On the one hand, as many view the Houston Texans' roster as being as thin as any in the NFL, it wouldn't seem as though there are very many "trade-worthy'' Texans.
On the other hand, as we look way down the road to the NFL trade deadline in October, if Houston is suffering through a dismal year but still offers a few talented performers who can be exchanged for future picks?
Sure. "Trade-worthy'' can happen.
This concept was recently played with by The Athletic, and we think they pretty much nailed it down. The Athletic writes, "Teams contending for the No. 1 pick tend not to have a ton of players other teams want, so besides Deshaun Watson, I wouldn’t label any Texans player as likely to be traded.''
We'll leave Watson out of this; he belongs in a category all his own. And we'll echo the thoughts of writer Aaron Reiss, who gives us:
1) Brandin Cooks. The receiver talks of not wanting to be traded anymore, but that's really not how this thing works. The final year of his contract is 2022. How long will this re-build take? Long enough to prefer a middle-round pick in 2022 to a Cooks on his expiring deal?
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2) Randall Cobb. The Athletic writes that "Cooks (is) a culture fit'' (in the view of exec Jack Easterby). We've gotten to know Cobb well enough over his NFL years that we'll make the same point in his favor ...
And so what?
Reiss speculates that "maybe the Texans could get a late-round pick from a team that wants proven emergency depth for a Super Bowl run.'' That's pretty specific. We'll keep it general: Cobb is an expensive "extra guy'' on a bad team. A trade can change that.
3) Jordan Akins. He is suddenly 29, and as The Athletic writes, "Houston recently spent a fifth-round pick on Brevin Jordan, a tight end with a similar skill set.''
We're not sure what the Texans could get for Akins; he's never really established himself as a force, in the eyes of the NFL, we bet. But expendable? Yes, with all due respect to Akins, that is the point of Jordan. And it would be the point of an October trade of the sort that would help build Houston's roster long-term.
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