It has been a busy NFL offseason, and it may not be done just yet.
As the calendar moves toward June, teams will look to continue shedding cap space and making roster moves that they may not have been able to complete earlier this spring.
There are still quite a few notable names who could still be on the move this summer.
Here are the blockbuster trades we could see happening:
Falcons trade Julio Jones to Patriots
Jones is among those whose contract saves the Atlanta Falcons more cap space if they trade him after June 1. The 32-year-old veteran says he wants to play for a winner and has reportedly said he wants to play with Cam Newton, specifically. The New England Patriots could also use another wide receiver and have reportedly had internal discussions about adding Jones.
Former Patriots tight end and WEEI’s Jermaine Wiggins believes the Patriots would go 15-2 if they could add Jones to the team.
New England has the cap space to add Jones, but he will not come cheap, likely a 2022 second rounder plus another pick or player. Someone like cornerback J.C. Jackson, who could help Atlanta’s secondary, may be required to get a deal done. Or, perhaps they swap out a receiver like N’Keal Harry, as explored by WEEI.
Regardless, we should not underestimate Bill Belichick’s ability to add another weapon to his offense.
Packers trade Aaron Rodgers to Broncos
Nobody seems to be quite sure what to make of the Aaron Rodgers drama. The Green Bay Packers continue to downplay it, but Rodgers acknowledged there is a difference in philosophy between him and the team.
If Rodgers really has hit a point of no return with the organization and wants out, the Packers’ hands might be tied and will trade the reigning MVP. Trading Rodgers after June 1 would save Green Bay $22.8 million in cap space while owing Rodgers $14.3 million in dead money, per overthecap.
The Denver Broncos seem to be the most logical landing spot. Rodgers, by all accounts, wants to head West and the Broncos do not have an absolute slam dunk answer at quarterback. They also have about $20 million in cap space and could probably make it work to get Rodgers on the roster.
Rodgers would probably cost the Broncos two first round draft picks, plus a player. Perhaps a wide receiver like K.J. Hamler or Tim Patrick could get the deal done?
Eagles trade Zach Ertz to Bills
Everyone seems to acknowledge that Zach Ertz’s days in Philadelphia are numbered, yet the Eagles have not dealt the veteran tight end yet. Part of that may be because by waiting until June 1, the Eagles would save $8.5 million against the cap with a trade of Ertz.
Two teams have mostly been linked to Ertz this offseason: the Indianapolis Colts and Buffalo Bills. A reunion with Frank Reich and Carson Wentz would certainly be intriguing, but the Bills, arguably, have the greater need at tight end with Dawson Knox and Jacob Hollister as their only options.
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell suggested a package of a seventh round pick and tight end Tommy Sweeny for Ertz. The Eagles really just need to move Ertz for the cap space and the Bills get another weapon for quarterback Josh Allen. It seems like a win-win for both teams, and could bring the Bills back to the negotiating table after Philadelphia was asking for a third round pick earlier this offseason.
Texans trade Deshaun Watson to Eagles
If you thought the Aaron Rodgers saga is tough to predict, the Deshaun Watson drama is much more complicated. The Houston Texans quarterback still wants to be traded despite the nearly two dozen civil lawsuits alleging sexual misconduct from massage therapists.
The NFL is handling its own internal investigation of the 25-year-old quarterback, and his status to play at all in the 2021 season is up in the air. Yet, there continue to be whispers, particularly linking Watson with the Eagles.
With so much uncertainty surrounding Watson, we acknowledge this is an extreme long-shot scenario. The Eagles would likely need the legal issues to be resolved before making any sort of deal, but let’s say, for argument’s sake, the lawsuits are dropped or settled this summer.
Watson would suddenly become a hot commodity once again and the Eagles, despite having Jalen Hurts, do not seem as if they would shy away from the quarterback. The Eagles have three first round picks and Hurts, a Houston native, could even be a part of a potential deal, Houston Chronicle reporter John McClain said on WIP.