NFL trade rumors are going to start heating up hot and heavy around the league heading into Nov. 3. Could someone like J.J. Watt be moved? The Texans star needs a change of scenery with his team in the midst of a lost season.
On the offensive side of the ball, rumors continue to persist around the NFL world that the Atlanta Falcons could trade Julio Jones. If that’s the case, what destination would suit him the best?
With less than two weeks to go until the NFL trade deadline, here’s a look at five star players in need of a change of scenery.
Minnesota Vikings trade Harrison Smith to the Tennessee Titans
Despite what Vikings general manager Rick Spielman might want us to believe, they are indeed throwing in the towel on the 2020 season. At 1-5 heading into Week 7, Minnesota traded recently-acquired Pro Bowl pass rusher Yannick Ngakoue to the Baltimore Ravens. It picked up a mere third-and-fifth round pick in return for the impending free agent.
If the Vikings are in full-scale sell off mode ahead of the No. 3 NFL trade deadline, sending veteran safety Harrison Smith to Tennessee would make a ton of sense. Teaming Smith up with Pro Bowl safety Kevin Byard would create a ton of mismatches for opposing offenses. Rumors of a Smith trade should heat up within the next several days. He’s 31 years old and likely won’t want to take part in a rebuild.
Philadelphia Eagles trade Zach Ertz to the Buffalo Bills
Ertz’s current status on injured reserve could potentially complicate things on the trade front. Prior to going down with a high-ankle sprain, rumors persisted that Philadelphia could trade its longtime Pro Bowl tight end. Despite said injury, more rumors have come out indicating that teams are still interested in the veteran.
If that is the case, Buffalo makes the most sense. NFL MVP candidate Josh Allen has been let down big time by his tight end, leading to struggles over the past couple weeks. Prior to going down with a calf injury, Dawson Knox caught just 6-of-12 targets in four games. Meanwhile, Tyler Kroft has just six catches himself. Buffalo needs to add a pass-catching threat at tight end. It’s in this that an Ertz trade to Western New York could heat up on the rumor mill.
Related: Philadelphia Eagles trade rumors
Jacksonville Jaguars trade Myles Jack to the Green Bay Packers
Green Bay lost starting linebacker Blake Martinez in free agency this past spring. The team has since not been able to duplicate what he was able to provide. Ty Summers and Krys Barnes simply are not long-term answers inside with the Packers. It’s led to rumors that Green Bay might look for an upgrade.
What better option than adding one of the NFL’s best linebackers to the mix? As we’ve seen in recent months, the Jaguars are willing to sell off their veteran defenders. The trades of Calais Campbell and the above-mentioned Yannick Ngakoue are two recent examples. If the Packers are willing to offer up a first-round pick and change, there would then likely be some merit to these rumors. After all, Jack can’t be happy playing for one of the worst teams in the NFL.
Related: Green Bay Packers trade rumors
Atlanta Falcons trade Julio Jones to the San Francisco 49ers
Trade rumors linking big-name wide receivers to the 49ers are nothing new. That had in the past included Odell Beckham Jr. Despite this, 49ers general manager John Lynch has opted to go young with Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk. Could this potentially change with San Francisco at 3-3 on the season and in need of reinforcements?
If so, rumors suggesting Jones is on the trade block could lead him to San Francisco. He has a built-in relationship with 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan dating back to their days together in Atlanta. The Falcons are about to partake in a long-term rebuild. If San Francisco were to offer up a first-round pick in a potential trade, it’s hard to imagine Atlanta passing up on that.
Houston Texans trade J.J. Watt to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Despite what he has said publicly, Watt can’t be happy about the direction of the Texans. Prior to being fired earlier in the season, former head coach and general manager Bill O’Brien dealt away both the Texans’ first-and-second round selections in the 2021 NFL Draft. The team is up against the cap. Its defense has been absolutely terrible this season.
As a consummate professional, Watt won’t request a trade. However, rumors continue to pop up in this regard given the fact that Houston needs to stockpile draft picks. It’s in this that Tampa Bay makes the most sense. The idea of teaming Watt up with Ndamukong Suh, Shaq Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul might be too hard for this organization to pass up on.