10 NFL Players Guaranteed to End Up on the Trading Block After 2011
When the 2011 NFL season has finally come to an end, there will be certain situations that exist on NFL teams where a player will ultimately be placed on the proverbial trading block.
It could be the result of two players being of comparable value, and the only way to alleviate the problem is to trade one guy away. It may be that a player has worn out his welcome, or just doesn't feel like he wants to play in a certain location any more.
Some players have fallen out of favor with the head coach. Some players have made such outrageous salary demands that they have to go away. Some players are considered to be a cancer in the locker room.
Those are just some of the reasons why a player will wind up on the chopping block. There are many more reasons, as you will see as we go through our presentation of players that should be on the trading block after 2011 comes to an end.
By the time the 2011 season comes to an end, Carolina will have established that Cam Newton is their franchise quarterback. We are not about to make any claims as to how far Newton progressed in his rookie year, but the point will be clear to all that Clausen is no longer in the Panthers' plans going forward.
The Panthers invested a high draft pick to land Clausen, so they will want to get something back of value for letting him leave.
It doesn't make much sense to have Clausen sit on the bench for most of the year, when you already have a backup veteran in Derek Anderson who can tell Newton more about what is going on in the game than Clausen can.
The only way that Clausen can improve his game is to be actually playing, and he can't do that in Carolina. There are enough teams that have quarterback issues that would be willing to let him come in and compete, and see what he has learned from his 2010 debut. Can't see him still being on this roster in 2012.
Asante Samuel or Joselio Hanson
Over the past few years, the Philadelphia Eagles have done a very nice job of finding value for their stockpile of quarterbacks, trading away Donovan McNabb and Kevin Kolb. Now they find a similar situation developing with their cornerbacks, as they once again have a logjam of talent at a position.
You figure that both Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie are going to be the mainstay starters for the near term. That leaves the duo of Asante Samuel and Joselio Hanson to either play in the nickel packages, or sit on the bench and wait for an injury before they see more playing time.
Samuel is used to starting, and although he is saying the right things now, you know eventually his patience will wear thin, and he will want to be starting for somebody.
Hanson was the subject of trade talks as multiple teams had made inquiries to the Eagles about him. But his contract price was deemed to be excessive. The Eagles released him, but when nobody picked up the hefty contract, the Eagles swooped in and signed him to a cheaper two-year deal.
Now that Hanson is less expensive, it would make sense that either Samuel or Hanson will be traded once the year is done. Too many teams need help in the secondary and the Eagles are happy to oblige as long as they get a pick or two in return.
Carson Palmer is still a relatively young man at only 31 years old. How many people do you know that have officially retired at 31? Like nobody, right?
It is conceivable that at some point during the season of watching NFL games from his home, or maybe even after the season ends, that Palmer breaks his retirement plans and reports to the Bengals organization.
We don't think that he will still ever play for the Bengals again, but by simply reporting to the team and working with the Bengals owner Mike Brown, some sort of deal could be worked out. There are too many teams that need quarterback help for a player of Palmer's ability and stature to remain out of the game, wasting away for more than a year.
Another consideration in this assessment is that Palmer still has not taken the formal steps to file his retirement papers with the NFL. Until that happens, Palmer is leaving a window open for his return.
My educated guess is that when he starts watching the games, the itch will start bothering him to get back to what he loves to do.
Not only that, but the value that the Bengals should get back for trading Palmer will help to address the many holes with the team. Makes too much sense not to happen.
Although the Panthers did a nice job of retaining a mix of their veterans with contract extensions, the team is too far away from being ready to contend for the playoffs or playing for a Super Bowl. Veteran wide receiver Steve Smith has been very good for a long time, but he doesn't have many years left.
Smith agreed to stay for 2011 to help break in Cam Newton and give him one more reliable target to throw to. But, after the 2011 season is done, I expect Smith will step up his efforts to ask for a trade so that he can play for a team that gives him a realistic chance to make the playoffs.
Despite having the top-selling jersey in the NFL, the Denver Broncos current management is under no obligation to keep Tim Tebow around after the 2011 season is over.
The Broncos are content to let Kyle Orton start the season and see how well he plays before they consider what to do about extending his contract.
Backup Brady Quinn is also on the final year of his contract. It is somewhat ironic that the only quarterback that the Broncos have under contract after 2011 is Tim Tebow, the one guy that they are not all that enamored with.
If the Broncos decide to bring back Orton as the starter, it is curious to see if Tebow would be content to wait another year on the bench for his chance.
He is being paid handsomely to hold the clipboard, but his fans probably want to see him starting somewhere. Chances are he is playing for a different NFL team in 2012.
We are not sure if Jerry Hughes will fall in to the recent first-round bust world of Vernon Gholston and Aaron Maybin, but he seems like he could be headed there.
A first-round draft pick for the Indianapolis Colts in 2010, Hughes has been unimpressive so far and finds himself third-string behind the likes of Jamaal Anderson and Tyler Braxton.
While the Jets and Bills were not able to get anything of value for their busts, the Colts are hoping that at least they can get enough good plays on tape where they can possibly get a draft pick or something in return. Right now, that might seem like a tall order, but the year is still young.
Sometimes you can find a trade partner based on what teams did when a player was a free agent. Such is the case with the Atlanta Falcons and Tyson Clabo. Clabo agreed to a contract extension to stay with the Atlanta Falcons, but only did so after being courted by the Buffalo Bills.
It is well-known that the Bills need a lot of help to build up their offensive line, and Clabo would be a right step in that direction. The other factor is that the Falcons lost some key draft picks in the process of acquiring wide receiver Julio Jones.
The Bills would have to agree to help restock the Falcons missing draft selections to get a player of Clabo's value, and then it would be incumbent on Atlanta to find a tackle through free agency or the draft to replace Clabo on the line.
In what is now becoming an annual rite of passage, the Philadelphia Eagles trade off one of their quarterbacks to help stockpile for the draft.
The 2012 draft will be no different.Vince Young will determine that he likes playing in Philadelphia and enjoys working with Michael Vick.
So, the Eagles will sign Young to a contract extension, at which point Mike Kafka lets it be known that he is ready to follow Donovan McNabb and Kevin Kolb out the door, so that he can go to another team and actually play somewhere.
Kafka is still under contract for 2012 and 2013, and is a relative bargain. While Vince Young is hurt, it would drive up Kafka's value if Vick went down for half of a game, or maybe a game and a half, during which time Kafka comes in and saves the day.
The rest of the NFL would then be left to salivate and speculate about how much other teams would have to secure him prior to the 2012 draft.
Steve Slaton's situation is one where the only way to escape from his existence as the fourth-string running back with the Houston Texans is to work out some kind of a trade to a team that needs help at the running back position.
Slaton is currently sitting behind Arian Foster, Ben Tate and Derrick Ward. That means that his touches will be minor and that he will be doing lots of watching this year.
Slaton is only 25 years old, so there is lots of football left in his legs. However, ever since his rookie year, his production continues to drop.
He went from 1,282 yards rushing in 2008, to 437 in 2009 and then only 93 yards in 2010. His touchdowns have gone in a very similar pattern from nine to three to zero.
As we recommend, some team that needs help at running back needs to acquire Slaton before he turns into rust.
Sometimes trades happen because a player asks his team to go above and beyond for them, and when they do, they want the team to do it again, and when they refuse, you have two parties that are very unhappy with each other.
That is essentially the deal going on between the Chicago Bears and linebacker Lance Briggs.
The way it stands is that Briggs asked the Bears to front-load a six-year contract in 2008 with lots of bonus money and guarantees in the first couple years, with a much smaller payout in the second half of his contract.
Now that he has collected the vast majority of the available money in the deal that he signed for, (last we checked nobody was holding a gun to the side of his head to sign the deal), he is unhappy because there isn't that much money coming in for the next three years. Surprise!
You signed the deal, Lance, now live with it. The Bears aren't going to budge, nor should they. If Briggs continues to sulk about how poor he is, he can thank his financial advisers and agent, when he is traded away to a different team in the offseason.