New York Jets Should Trade Up in the Draft for Trent Richardson

Sam QuinnContributor IIIApril 24, 2012

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 09:  Trent Richardson #3 of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter against the Louisiana State University Tigers during the 2012 Allstate BCS National Championship Game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 9, 2012 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

In the words of Michael Scott, "it takes a big man to admit his mistakes, and I am that big man."

On Sunday, I wrote that the Jets need to trade down in the draft and accumulate picks. While I still agree with myself in theory, I think an exception needs to be made for Alabama running back Trent Richardson

If the rumors are true, and the Jets really do want to trade up for Richardson, then I think it's absolutely the right move. 

Trent Richardson isn't like most players. If the Jets trade up for Melvin Ingram, they may have filled a hole. If the Jets trade up for Richardson, then they've changed their entire offense.

If Richardson really is the next Adrian Peterson, then there's no price too steep to pay for that kind of talent. Speaking of price, what kind of deal would the Jets be looking at?

Last year the Falcons moved all the way from No. 27 to No. 6 to take Julio Jones. That cost them their 2012 first rounder, their 2011 second rounder and two fourth rounders. Before you freak out Jet fans, there is no way a move up for Richardson would cost as much. 

First of all, The Jets would be moving up 13 spots, not the 21 Atlanta did. Second of all, Minnesota desperately wants to trade the pick. They've done everything short of posting it on Craigslist. If they get a deal even close to fair value they'll take it.

Obviously the No. 16 pick would be involved. The rest of the deal would be based around either a collection of picks this year (and based on the trade value chart, it would cost pretty much every pick the Jets have), or their first round pick next year along with some smaller items. 

ATLANTA, GA - NOVEMBER 13:  Julio Jones #11 of the Atlanta Falcons fails to pull in this touchdown reception against Jabari Greer #33 of the New Orleans Saints at Georgia Dome on November 13, 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

So let's say it costs the Jets the two first round picks and some other stuff. What else would be involved? Logic says that it would probably be a third or fourth round pick along with a late rounder. The Jets could go that route, or they could offer to fill some of Minnesota's holes with players.

The Vikings have a need at corner, so the Jets may be willing to offer Antonio Cromartie. They also have needs on the offensive line, so if the Jets have any confidence in Vladimir Ducasse, Brandon Moore may be available. Wayne Hunter could be an option as well if the Vikings have any interest in him. 

I would guess the price comes down to the two first rounders, a third and a sixth. I would make that trade without any hesitation.

Let's look at the Jones deal. Cleveland basically ended up with two solid starters (Phil Taylor and Greg Little) and another first rounder this year. That's a solid haul. 

But in the end, Atlanta got the star. Julio Jones is going to be a superstar in the NFL for a decade, and while Taylor and Little are both fine players, none will do nearly what Jones will. For a team like Cleveland with very little talent, it made sense to go for quantity. But Atlanta felt like they could win the Super Bowl, so they went all in with Julio Jones and probably don't regret it. 

If Rex Ryan and Mike Tannenbaum really feel like the Jets can win the Super Bowl, then they should go for it. The Jets have 10 picks in the draft this year, they can afford to give a few of them up. If they feel like they'll be contending next year then losing their first rounder isn't a critical blow. 

Making this trade might cost the Jets several long term contributors. But Richardson is more than that. Richardson has the kind of potential to be someone we remember forever. He has the talent to carry a ground and pound offense. If the Jets really think they can contend over the next few years, they have to trade for Richardson and never look back.