NFL Trade Rumors: Could Stay of Lockout Injunction Kill Draft Day Trading?
NFL Trade Rumors Ponder Whether Potential Stay of Lockout Injunction Will Affect Pick Trading In NFL Draft
In a move that could potentially quelch NFL trade rumors for the foreseeable future, the 8th District Court of Appeals Judge hearing the owners' appeal of Judge Susan Nelson's injunction ending the lockout could end this afternoon.
According to ESPN's John Clayton, a source in the judge's office told him a ruling on the temporary stay pending the appeal could come as soon as this afternoon, while Yahoo! Sports' Nate Silver reported that players were prepared for a stay of Judge Nelson's ruling.
Of course, with the lockout comes a renewed ban on player transactions (although the current ban was still in place for the time being), while the NFL drags its feet through legal proceedings.
But, will the transaction ban affect tonight's NFL Draft? With the second and third rounds set to take place during prime time tonight, would the transaction ban kill the trading of draft picks that makes the draft so enthralling to watch?
Fortunately, unless the league specifies draft picks as part of the ban, there's no reason why teams would be unable to trade picks before players were selected.
Draft picks are not quantifiable entities like players; they're not people and therefore, they're not hurt by the ban on player transactions in any way. Draft picks also lack a definable value, and while they turn into players when a team uses the pick, they don't equate to a specific person, and therefore can be traded freely.
Think of it like this: while we all try to predict who a team will take with a specific pick, and while we may have a decent idea of who a team may take, in theory they can draft anyone whose name is submitted to be drafted.
On top of that, the league isn't stupid (or, at least, they're not that stupid); they know fans tune in to watch teams wheel and deal their way into good drafts or bad drafts, and they wouldn't ruin one of their biggest events of the year by killing one of the aspects that make it so interesting.
Of course, we also thought there wouldn't be a lockout in the first place for much the same reason (that the NFL owners weren't stupid) and look where that got us.
However, given that there's no players involved directly in draft pick swaps, it makes no sense for the league to end draft pick trades.
So, regardless of the appeals court's ruling, the NFL Draft will still feature pick trades. In other words, you can relax; you'll get to see another team pull an Atlanta Falcons and overpay for a single pick.
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