Trades are the most exciting, intriguing roster moves in the NFL. Sure, the crazy rumors and crazier contracts of free agency can be fun, and the draft almost always makes teams better. A trade, though, is a game within a game—one than can be won or lost.
There are so many aspects to every trade, whether it's a player for draft picks, player for player or a combination of the two.
There's immediate on-field impact: Which team is going to get more production this season? Then, there's long-term on-field impact: Which team will still be benefiting from this trade down the road?
If draft picks are being swapped for players, what kind of pick value is getting moved? Is it enough to make up for the loss of the player?
The salary cap confuses everything. Is either team taking a cap hit, with acceleration of dead money? Is either team taking on a monster contract that's going to restrict spending going forward or getting a bad contract off the books?
Finally, and most importantly, there's team need. What is each team trying to accomplish with the trade? Is one team loading up for a title run or in the middle of a fire sale? Does the player fill an obvious need or just muddy the depth chart?
For every trade so far this offseason, we put all of these factors on the scales of justice and render judgment: Which team won every trade so far?