Drafting from other teams: Is it smarter to use draft picks for established players?

Dayna O’Gorman
Senior NFL Reporter
AFC North/AFC West

By Dayna O’Gorman // @DaynaOG

The Super Bowl is officially 2 weeks old. Congratulations to Kansas City, but… the football world has already moved on. As Kate mentioned in her article about quarterbacks last week, the free agency frenzy and the trade block rumors have already started and it is at full steam.

While yes, the draft is just a few months away and we are seeing plenty of articles and mock drafts online, the focus has definitely turned to who is available via trade. We know the free agents traditionally go with who throws them the biggest amount of cash, which I’m all for, but trades are a little different. A surprising trade… now that makes a splash!

Ok ok, you’re right. Trade rumors usually start early and can often be ridiculous. I mean, it’s almost like a game to see who can come up with the most insane trade.

But what about those trades that might make some sense? Trades that some fans might hate, but in the end are a smarter move than an unproven rookie?

When a team sets up their draft board, there is a lot that is unknown. How will a young player make the transition into the NFL? Will he live up to the hype of the Combine and Draft? But when teams look to trade for an already established player, there is less that is left to chance. There is already so much more known about the player, not just about his presence on the field, but as a person. It’s sometimes the safer option to “draft from another team”, using those picks to find an established player.

Now I’m not saying a rookie can’t make a huge impact. Just look at the rookie classes from the last 20 years. Almost every class has major impact players in them but we have also seen a lot of rookies that are total busts. Its a crapshoot.

Looking at a few names that have been mentioned as possibly being available for trade, would you want your team to bet on them? Cam Newton? Le’Veon Bell? Darius Slay? Odell Beckham? These aren’t just random players that have been rolling along on a team, playing ok enough to keep their jobs. These are impact, proven, superstar players. Do you honestly think OBJ wouldn’t garner a first-round pick in the 2020 draft?

Now before you start yelling at me… yes, I realize those players come with a very different price tag than the rookies do. Super Bowl teams are often built around rosters made up of young players who are cheap. But this year seems a little different. Have you seen the teams with the most amount of cap space?

Of the top 15 teams with the most cap space, there are 4 playoff teams and a handful of teams that almost made the playoffs. While yes, some of these teams listed are in need of a full rebuild (and those cheap rookie deals), most of them do not. These are teams who are 1-3 impact players away from being powerhouses. This is where relying on trades and free agency makes sense.

So how do you feel about drafting from other teams? Is it something you want your favorite team to do? I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.

Follow Dayna on Twitter // @DaynaOG

#SmartWomen #SmartFootball

Shop for NFL Gear Here

2 thoughts on “Drafting from other teams: Is it smarter to use draft picks for established players?

Leave a Reply