NFL Trade Speculation: 5 Trades That Would've Happened Without the Lockout

Eli Nachmany@EliNachmanyCorrespondent IIIMay 9, 2011

NFL Trade Speculation: 5 Trades That Would've Happened Without the Lockout

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    ATLANTA - OCTOBER 24:  Chad Ochocinco #85 of the Cincinnati Bengals fails to pull in this reception against the Atlanta Falcons at Georgia Dome on October 24, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    This year, the Green Bay Packers proved that drafting a homegrown roster is the new blueprint for success in the NFL.

    As teams try more and more to build rosters from scratch, it can't be ignored that offseason trading is integral when it comes to getting rid of those disgruntled superstars or acquiring the final piece to a Super Bowl contender.

    Last offseason, the Jets made some serious noise, trading for Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie, among others.

    Holmes and Cromartie were invaluable in the Jets' run to the AFC Championship game, and now, we are left to speculate what big trades could have gone down if not for the lockout.

Kevin Kolb to ARZ

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    PHILADELPHIA, PA - JANUARY 02:  Kevin Kolb #4 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on against the Dallas Cowboys on January 2, 2011 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    Trade: PHI trades QB Kevin Kolb to ARZ for 2011 first- and third-round draft picks

    If Kevin Kolb were in the 2011 draft class, he'd undoubtedly be a top-five pick.

    Kolb has a vote of confidence from Larry Fitzgerald, and would have been (still would be) a perfect fit in Arizona.

    The Cardinals basically trade two draft picks for their franchise quarterback, and make a deal in line with what Houston gave for Matt Schaub a few years back (two second rounders and a swap of first-round picks).

    On the flip side, Andy Reid gets two more draft picks to work with, and the Eagles are able to add another talented, young player to the fold.

Steve Smith to SD

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    CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 19:  Steve Smith #89 of the Carolina Panthers points to the Arizona Cardinals sideline during their game at Bank of America Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    Trade: CAR trades WR Steve Smith to SD for a 2011 third-round draft pick

    CBS recently reported that both sides (Smith and the Chargers) have a mutual interest, while the Panthers are obviously keeping mum on the issue to keep Smith's trade value reasonably high.

    The Chargers need a 5'10", 180-lb vertical threat to round out their receiving corps, and the speedy Panther would add a dangerous element to the Chargers offense.

    Smith would be more content listening to an established professional like Philip Rivers in the huddle than Jimmy Clausen, and the veteran receiver would be motivated to play hard for another shot at a Super Bowl.

    On the other side, the Panthers probably want the unhappy Smith gone, and Cam Newton would benefit from having a group of receivers that are all-in for the team.

Donovan McNabb to MIN

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    ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 19:  Quarterback Donovan McNabb #5  of the Washington Redskins on the sidelines against play against the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Trade: WAS trades QB Donovan McNabb to MIN for a 2011 fifth-round draft pick

    Donovan McNabb is out in Washington and has a limited number of options on where he could play ball in 2011—one of those options was Minnesota.

    Looking back, the Vikings could have traded a late round pick for McNabb and drafted a defensive end instead of Christian Ponder with the 12th pick.

    The Redskins would have gotten rid of McNabb for a later-round draft choice, and would have been able to start fresh at the quarterback position.

    The Vikings, by contrast, would have acquired the quarterback to lead their talented roster deep into the playoffs, and both sides would come out better for the trade.

Chad Ochocinco to NE

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    KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 23:  Chad Ochocinco reacts during his tryout with Sporting Kansas City on March 23, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Trade: CIN trades Chad Ochocinco to NE for a 2011 third-round draft pick

    Chad Ochocinco's time is undoubtedly up in Cincinnati, and the former star is looking for a new home.

    In an odd way, Ochocinco and the New England Patriots are a perfect fit.

    The Patriots would take on a new attitude project in Chad Ochocinco, and Tom Brady would utilize the Oregon State graduate like a rejuvenated Randy Moss.

    The Patriots need a No. 1 receiver, and Chad Ochocinco needs a fresh start somewhere.

    For the Bengals, Marvin Lewis gets rid of a headache for a mid-round draft pick, and moves on without the me-first pass-catcher.

Aqib Talib to NYJ

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    CINCINNATI, OH - OCTOBER 10: Aqib Talib #25 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers returns an interception against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
    Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

    Trade: TB trades Aqib Talib to NYJ for 2011 third-round draft pick

    The New York Jets would do something like this.

    With Antonio Cromartie up for a new contract, the Jets could have flipped their third-round pick for the embattled Buccaneers cornerback.

    Talib brings similar attributes to the table when comparing him and Cromartie, except that Talib is better.

    The Jets took a gamble with their third-round pick anyway, picking Kenrick Ellis, a DT facing up to 20 years in prison—they would have been well served to have traded the pick for the more talented Talib, who is in the same position.

    The game-breaking defensive back plays with intensity and would be able to gamble even more on passes with better safety help behind him.

    For the Buccaneers, they get a mid-round draft pick and move on from the distracting Talib.