4 Ideal Trade Scenarios for the Atlanta Falcons to Pursue This Offseason
Player trades are rare in the NFL. The Atlanta Falcons have some options they should pursue that are ideal scenarios. These are trades that would be cap-logical as well as affordable should the Falcons be able to get a long-term deal out of the players involved.
These trades will focus on situations that could address the Falcons' biggest needs for depth along their lines, maximizing values for underperforming players with solid reputations around the league and possibly even bringing in that big defensive tackle the team has needed for half of a decade.
WR Harry Douglas for a Midround Pick
Harry Douglas isn't the receiver his 85-catch, 1,067-yard and two-touchdown season suggests. The Falcons realize he's a solid No. 2 receiver on any other team in the league and could possibly get a third-round pick for his services.
Ideally, they get a mid-third-round pick and can get a tight end among the caliber of Austin Seferian-Jenkins or even Troy Niklas. The Falcons have multiple players who could replace Douglas on the roster in Darius Johnson and Drew Davis.
They also could take the money spent on Douglas and put it toward Andre Roberts of the Arizona Cardinals, Jacoby Jones of the Baltimore Ravens or Tiquan Underwood of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in free agency. Any of those players would be instant upgrades over Douglas in the offense.
OL Andrew Whitworth
Andrew Whitworth isn't exactly on the trading block. However, he has made his wishes to continue playing left tackle known to Bengals.com reporter Geoff Hobson. If the Bengals re-sign Anthony Collins to be their long-term left tackle, Whitworth could possibly demand a trade.
Atlanta would be a near-perfect landing spot for him as it has the right cap situation to absorb his contract and would be more than willing to play him next to Justin Blalock to solidify the left side of the line. Sam Baker could then slide inside where he could be more effective with his injury history.
On top of that, Lamar Holmes could slide to his more natural right tackle role. The Falcons would have an upgraded offensive line with just a single—albeit high-profile—move. The cost may be worth more than what Atlanta would want to pay as it would likely take a third-round pick or higher, though.
DL Haloti Ngata
When a team needs to upgrade its defensive tackle situation, the best move is to go after the best defensive tackle in the league. While Haloti Ngata doesn't look like he's anywhere close to the trade market, his contract leaving the Ravens would free up over 10 million in cap after the 2014 season.
He's a perfect fit for the Falcons' 1-technique defensive tackle role. Mike Nolan would love that he finally has an explosive beast on the inside of his defense—as would Paul Worrilow, Sean Weatherspoon and Akeem Dent.
Atlanta would then have to restructure the massive defensive tackle's contract. A multiyear deal that pays him to stick with Atlanta would have to pay him at least what he's making in his current contract.
However, he's worth the investment. Even if it would cost at least Atlanta's second-round pick.
OL Peter Konz for a Midround Pick
Peter Konz has been nothing but a disappointment since he's been drafted. He's been a poor fit at right guard and even worse at center. Konz is a legitimate option for another team's center role, as he could fit in well for a zone-blocking scheme.
He played in a zone-blocking scheme flanked by two excellent guards at Wisconsin. A return to that type of situation will only be beneficial to Konz. Atlanta could possibly get a third- or fourth-round selection in an ideal scenario for Konz.
With that pick and the open spot at center, Atlanta could bring back Joe Hawley to be the starter. On top of that, it would be able to use that third- or fourth-round pick on a versatile offensive lineman that could provide depth along the entire line or even compete for another one of the starting roles.
Scott Carasik is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He covers the Atlanta Falcons, College Football, NFL and the NFL draft. He also runs DraftFalcons.com.
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