While the Deshaun Watson speculation continued over the weekend, another story involving a proven quarterback surfaced and that one could end up being the one that directly impacts the Miami Dolphins.
The latest involves Matthew Stafford and the mutual decision with the Detroit Lions for the eight-time 4,000-yard passer to continue his career with another team. But after Stafford is traded, new head coach Dan Campbell and new offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn will need a new quarterback to lead their offense, and that's where the Dolphins come in.
The Lions are expected to ask at least for a first-round pick in exchange for Stafford, which will go along with the seventh overall selection they already possess.
The expectation is that the Lions are going to want to draft a quarterback in the 2021 NFL draft, though their options aren't going to be as good at number 7 as at, say, number 3.
The Dolphins have two picks in the first rounds and a clear need for a wide receiver, and logic says they should be able to get either Ja'Marr Chase from LSU or DeVonta Smith from Alabama at number 7. That makes them a great trading partner for the Lions, especially since the teams play in different conferences.
The Pro Football Network draft simulator came up with a proposed trade of the seventh pick and first- and third-round picks in 2022 going from Detroit to Miami for the third overall pick.
It says here the Dolphins should jump all over it if that trade proposal ever materialized.
Examining the top of the 2021 draft, we can break down who the Lions also could engage in trade talks.
It won't be Jacksonville at number 1 because it would be the biggest upset in the NFL in a long, long time if the Jaguars didn't simply take Trevor Lawrence.
At number 2 are the New York Jets, and there are all sorts of possibilities with them, including a mega trade with Houston for Watson, taking a QB at number 2 or also trading down, which would make them a competitor with the Dolphins.
The three teams between the Dolphins and Lions are Atlanta, Cincinnati and Philadelphia. The Falcons very well could go looking for a quarterback, but the Bengals likely will focus on an offensive lineman (Penei Sewell) and the Eagles aren't likely to go for a quarterback given the financial commitment they have made to Carson Wentz.
If the Lions end up trading up, the most logical trade partners are the Jets, Dolphins and Eagles, though some of it might depend on how the draft unfolds. The Eagles aren't as desirable for the Lions because they play in the same conference, though it obviously would be less costly to move from 7 to 5 than from 7 to 2 or 3.
Any way this shakes out, the Dolphins have a clear potential trade partner in the Lions, to go along with the San Francisco 49ers, who just might be ready to move on from Jimmy Garoppolo.