NFL Trade Rumors: Latest Buzz Surrounding A.J. Green, Josh Norman, O.J. Howard

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistOctober 29, 2019

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 22:  A.J. Green #18 of the Cincinnati Bengals on the field before a game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field on September 22, 2019 in Orchard Park, New York. Buffalo beats Cincinnati 21 to 17.  (Photo by Timothy T. Ludwig/Getty Images)
Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

With the 2019 NFL trade deadline just hours away, a number of high-profile names continue to pop up in the rumor mill.

Below is a look at the latest buzz as the 4 p.m. ET deadline approaches.


Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green

The Cincinnati Bengals may be 0-8, but don't expect them to be overly active prior to the trade deadline.

Josina Anderson of ESPN reported Monday that Cincinnati is not expected to move any of its "key guys." That figures to include receiver A.J. Green, whose contract expires at the conclusion of the season. 

Head coach Zac Taylor made it quite clear earlier this month that "we are not trading that guy" as rumors swirled around the 31-year-old. Jay Glazer of Fox Sports noted Sunday that teams have called about the receiver but have been turned away.

League sources recently told Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic that Cincinnati operates under the stance "it's not their job to make other teams better." 

If the Bengals made Green available, there would be no shortage of interest in the seven-time Pro Bowler. He started his career with six 1,000-yard performances in his first eight years, with the two exceptions coming when he was limited to 10 games or fewer due to injury.

PFF OAK Raiders @PFF_Raiders

In @PFF_Sam’s article of 6 trades that should be made before the deadline, he lists AJ Green to the #Raiders as one 👀 He trails only Julio Jones over the past 5 years in yards per route run with 2.46. What say you, #RaiderNation? https://t.co/TBN9ZtlGCC https://t.co/S2EmeViq7Q

The 6'4", 210-pound Georgia product has proved to be extremely valuable to Cincinnati. The team is 1-15 without him since the start of 2018, having gone 5-4 with him during that span.

It's not clear what the Bengals could get for Green, given he has missed the first eight weeks of the season with an ankle injury and is an impending free agent. It doesn't seem worth speculating about at this point, though, as the team does not appear willing to part with its best player.

Green has gone on the record multiple times and let it be known he wants to spend his entire career with one team. The 2011 fourth overall pick said earlier this month, per Bengals.com's Geoff Hobson, he's "loyal to the person who gave me my shot," pointing to longtime Arizona Cardinals star Larry Fitzgerald as his role model. 


Washington CB Josh Norman

Though Green may not be likely to change jerseys Tuesday, one name to keep an eye on is Washington cornerback Josh Norman.

According to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network, the team has been active in trying to trade the 31-year-old as it sits at 1-7 on the season:

Tom Pelissero @TomPelissero

In addition to LT Trent Williams, the #Redskins are calling around trying to trade CB Josh Norman, per sources. Tough to get value right now: Norman is due almost $6 million for the rest of this season and hasn't been practicing because of thigh and hand injuries.

ESPN's Jenna Laine confirmed the veteran is on the trade block.

Four years removed from his only All-Pro season, Norman is still capable of helping a team looking to make a playoff push down the stretch. He has recorded 31 tackles, four pass breakups, one interception and one sack in seven appearances this season.

Although he has remained productive, his contract may limit his trade value. The defensive back is owed nearly $6 million still this season and is scheduled to make $12 million in 2020, per Spotrac.

CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora suggested any trade of Norman would be viewed as a "salary dump" for Washington, with the team likely to expect a minimal return.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE O.J. Howard

Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end O.J. Howard is available—for the right price.

According to Laine, Tampa Bay will not consider trading the 24-year-old unless it receives a "substantial offer." Laine added that "multiple teams" have inquired.

Phil Perry @PhilAPerry

OJ Howard...not unavailable. https://t.co/Z74KjIftC4

Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated wrote last week that the New England Patriots had been turned away by the Buccaneers as they continue to try to find a replacement for five-time Pro Bowler Rob Gronkowski, who retired during the offseason.

After showing progress last season (565 yards and five touchdowns), Howard has gotten off to a quiet start in his first year in Bruce Arians' offense. He has just 13 receptions for 176 yards and has yet to find the end zone.

His lack of production has not gone unnoticed in Tampa. Last month, Arians told reporters that Howard "can play a heck of a lot better than he's playing." The 6'6" tight end has just nine catches for 144 yards in four games since being called out.

Though the Buccaneers appear poised for a lost season, they will not just give Howard away. After all, the 2017 first-round pick is under contract through 2020 at a reasonable price (he will make $3.5 million next season), and the team reserves the right to exercise a fifth-year option on his rookie deal for 2021.


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