Potential Trade Packages, Landing Spots for Seahawks Star DK Metcalf

Brent Sobleski@@brentsobleskiNFL AnalystApril 4, 2022

Potential Trade Packages, Landing Spots for Seahawks Star DK Metcalf

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    Matt Patterson/Associated Press

    The wide receiver market has been turned upside-down over the last month, with another superstar target possibly on the move. According to ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, league executives believe the Seattle Seahawks' DK Metcalf could be traded for "the right price," and the wide receiver "would welcome a change." 

    'I'm told that Metcalf has gotten indications, informally from the team, that he's not going to be traded. Seattle has said publicly they have no intention to trade him," Fowler said.

    But the organization didn't intend to trade quarterback Russell Wilson, either. 

    "There were financial issues, there were roster issues, the ability to be really active moving forward in the draft," head coach Pete Carroll told reporters. "… It was all of those elements that came together."

    Those elements can come together again. 

    The Amari Cooper, Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill trades to the Cleveland Browns, Las Vegas Raiders and Miami Dolphins, respectively, set the precedent.

    The Dallas Cowboys dealt Cooper for a fifth-round selection and a swap of sixth-round picks to Cleveland for salary-cap relief. Adams cost the Raiders far more with first- and second-round picks going back to the Green Bay Packers. Hill brought a windfall for the Kansas City Chiefs when the Dolphins sent them a first-, second-, and fourth-round pick in 2022 and a fourth- and sixth-round pick in 2023.

    Metcalf, 24, is at least three years younger than all of them, though he's entering a contract year. Any trade would likely include a new deal to go along with the move. Plenty of draft assets will come the Seahawks' way if the front office chooses to fully embrace a rebuild. 

New York Jets

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    Adam Hunger/Associated Press

    Trade Package: Jets send this year's 10th (via Seattle), 38th (via Carolina), 117th (via Minnesota) and 163rd (via Pittsburgh) overall picks to the Seahawks for Metcalf

    The New York Jets have been on the hunt for a big-time threat in the passing game and fell short of acquiring Tyreek Hill. 

    Despite the big swing and miss, the Jets may not be done pursuing a star wideout.

    "If the opportunity is right and the price is right, we're going to strike," general manager Joe Douglas told reporters at the NFL owners' meetings. 

    No better time exists than now to strike if the Seahawks are willing to listen. 

    The Jets have a quarterback under a rookie deal for at least the next three seasons. New York can bring in Metcalf on the final year of his rookie deal and offer him a long-term extension. Considering the wide receiver doesn't turn 25 until December, he and Zach Wilson can grow together over time. 

    Furthermore, the move makes sense from both the team's financial and draft perspectives. 

    New York can easily absorb Metcalf's $4 million base salary this season with the flexibility for a massive extension. The Jets feature attractive draft properties to entice Seattle. Metcalf is well-worth this year's 10th overall pick, the second of New York's two top-10 selections.

    Ironically, the selection came courtesy of the Jamal Adams trade. Douglas also has a pair of second-, fourth- and fifth-round picks at his disposal. 

    The Jets aren't one player away, but Metcalf's addition has the potential to form an excellent offensive core with Wilson, Elijah Moore, Michael Carter, Mekhi Becton, Alijah Vera-Tucker and Laken Tomlinson.

New Orleans Saints

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    John Froschauer/Associated Press

    Trade Package: Saints send this year's 18th overall pick and a 2023 first-round selection to the Seahawks for Metcalf

    The New Orleans Saints' manipulation of the NFL salary cap is truly amazing. The team entered this offseason tens of millions in the red but currently own the second-most cap space, per Spotrac

    Granted, the team did lose left tackle Terron Armstead and safety Marcus Williams in free agency. Otherwise, the nucleus of last year's 9-8 team remains intact. 

    The Saints finished above .500 despite quarterback Jameis Winston playing in only seven games, the pass offense ranking dead last and wide receiver Michael Thomas not participating in a single contest. 

    Yes, Sean Payton is gone. But the Saints can remain competitive and drastically improve on offense if they place the right pieces around Winston. 

    Everything started by mending fences with Thomas, who is coming off of season-ending ankle surgery. The two sides already reworked his contract, and new head coach Dennis Allen met with his star receiver last month. 

    With Thomas expected back and Tre'Quan Smith re-signed, the Saints are already better at wide receiver than they were at the start of the offseason. But the team isn't done adding to the receiving corps. 

    "We feel good about the position, but yet it's still a position we want to add to," Allen told reporters last week. 

    Metcalf immediately adds a home-run threat on the outside. Thomas posted monster numbers earlier in his career, but he's never been considered a consistent vertical option. The two could play off each other nicely and give Winston the type of support, with Alvin Kamara, for the 2015 No. 1 overall pick to thrive. 

Detroit Lions

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    Jack Dempsey/Associated Press

    Trade Package: Lions send this year's 32nd and 97th overall picks, as well as next year's first-round pick (via Rams), to the Seahawks for Metcalf

    The Detroit Lions entered last season with the league's worst wide receiver corps. Fortunately, fourth-round rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown made an immediate impact by leading the team with 90 receptions for 912 yards and five touchdown catches. 

    While St. Brown is a talented slot receiver capable of being a productive piece of the offensive puzzle, he isn't a true No. 1 target.

    The Lions lack a true difference-maker in the passing game. The free-agent signing of D.J. Chark doesn't change that fact. 

    Yes, questions persist about Jared Goff and how long he'll be the organization's starting quarterback. Maybe the team sinks this year's second overall pick into a signal-caller with significant upside. Regardless, whoever is behind center needs weapons.

    Big swings in the draft and trade market would be the jolt the franchise desperately needs after years of disappointment. Sadly, the Lions managed 10 or more wins only twice in the last 26 years. 

    Metcalf is a star on and off the field. He can immediately come in as WR1 and give Detroit the type of threat they've lacked since Calvin Johnson unexpectedly retired. Plus, the Lions have the real estate to make something happen. 

    Detroit owns the Los Angeles Rams' first-round picks in each of the next two drafts. Those can be flipped to the Seahawks for Metcalf while maintaining this year's second overall pick for the possible selection of Liberty quarterback Malik Willis. 

Indianapolis Colts

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    Michael Conroy/Associated Press

    Trade Package: Colts send this year's 42nd (via Commanders), 122nd, and 159th overall picks, as well as their 2023 first- and third-round selections, to the Seahawks for Metcalf and this year's 229th overall pick

    The Indianapolis Colts already deftly executed two offseason trades to significantly improve the roster. Why not add a third? 

    After the organization dumped Carson Wentz, seemingly without a contingency plan, the Colts were fortunate Matt Ryan was available. In essence, Indianapolis traded away Wentz and got better (and cheaper) at the quarterback position while adding a future conditional third-round pick. 

    An earlier deal brought Yannick Ngakoue into the fold to bolster the team's edge-rush. DeForest Buckner has done the heavy lifting along the defensive front since joining the team, and the Colts made sure to give the two-time Pro Bowl selection some much-needed help. 

    The same should be said for Ryan and Michael Pittman Jr.

    Currently, Ashton Dulin and Parris Campbell are behind Pittman on the depth chart. The duo combined for 23 catches for 335 yards last season. Metcalf would give the Colts the league's most physically intimidating pair of wide receivers—the 24-year looks like he's sculpted from granite, while Pittman stands 6'4" and weighs 223 pounds. 

    But the acquisition of Wentz for a 2022 first-round pick from last offseason places the Colts in a bind. Therefore, they have to be somewhat creative by moving off their second-, fourth- and fifth-round selections while hoping the enticement of first- and third-round picks next year help offset the immediate return. 

    The Colts understand their window to win with the soon-to-be 37-year-old Ryan is now. The veteran signal-caller is only under contract for the next two years. A move for Metcalf can make the Colts legitimate contenders in the loaded AFC. 

Green Bay Packers

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    Jeffrey Phelps/Associated Press

    Trade Package: Packers send this year's 22nd (via Las Vegas), 53rd (via Las Vegas), 140th overall pick, as well as next year's third-round pick, to Seattle for Metcalf

    Imagine the Green Bay Packers taking their return from the Davante Adams trade and flipping it for Metcalf. 

    While the Packers handed quarterback Aaron Rodgers the keys to the franchise, the move came with both sides knowing Adams wanted out. Green Bay eventually traded the league's best wide receiver to the Las Vegas Raiders. 

    "While Aaron Rodgers was negotiating his contract, he knew Davante Adams would never play for the Packers again," NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported. "The situation was too far gone. Something had to give. And when Adams informed GB he wasn't playing on the [franchise] tag, talks got fired up."

    The Athletic's Matt Schneidman added, "Ultimately, the move came down to Adams wanting to play with Raiders quarterback Derek Carr, one of his best friends and his college quarterback at Fresno State."

    The chance to become the highest-paid wide receiver in NFL history in terms of total value certainly helped matters. 

    Green Bay might have to invest a little more draft capital to get the younger Metcalf in return, but the idea of making him the league's highest-paid wide receiver probably isn't in the cards. Obviously, the former second-round pick will get paid but likely not to the same extent, especially if the Packers are willing to extend him as a part of the trade agreement.

    An earlier investment is smart business anyhow, considering Metcalf should experience an uptick in production playing alongside Rodgers. 

    The idea of a veteran acquisition is another wise approach because the four-time league MVP is notoriously hard on young wide receivers. 

    Green Bay can invest one of their two first-round picks on a wide receiver and hope the incoming rookie pans out, or it can make a strong push to bring one of the league's best young targets into the fold.