10 Teams That NEED to Trade for Deshaun Watson
Could Deshaun Watson do the unthinkable and force the Houston Texans to trade him?
Just a few months after signing a four-year extension worth $160 million, the Watson trade speculation has ramped up quickly.
Sources told Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that Watson has approached some teammates about potentially requesting a trade
Chances are, of course, that Watson stays with the Texans. But you can’t dismiss the possibility of a deal being worked out.
And if we’re heading down that road, it’s probably a good idea to take a look at 10 teams who should trade for Houston’s superstar quarterback.
But first, one honorable mention:
The Cowboys will most likely pay Dak Prescott, who played under the franchise tag in 2020 before he suffered a brutal season-ending ankle injury in Week 5.
But if Jerry Jones wasn’t willing to meet Prescott’s asking price BEFORE his injury, it’s still very possible that he refuses to pay Dak and decides to move on this offseason—especially if there’s a quarterback like Deshaun Watson available on the market.
Could Jerry go bold and let Dak walk in free agency, and opt to trade for the younger, healthier quarterback in Watson? Again, highly unlikely, but if the latter does become available, you have to think Jones will at least inquire.
And if he and Dak can’t reach a deal, then Jones should be all over this.
Now, to the top 10.
10. New York Giants
Joe Judge did a lot of good things with a not-so-talented Giants team in 2020. They fell just short of winning the NFC East despite a sluggish offense that finished 31st in scoring, averaging a woeful 17.5 points per game.
The Giants don’t want to admit it, but taking Daniel Jones sixth overall in 2019 was a mistake. Everyone knew it was a massive reach. He has a very limited ceiling and commits way too many inexcusable turnovers. The Giants should find an upgrade.
New York has the draft capital and cap space to make a play for Watson. Such a move would start with the No. 11 selection in 2021, which would give Houston the chance to snag someone like Zach Wilson, Trey Lance or Mac Jones.
Throw Watson on the young, up-and-coming Giants…with Saquon Barkley as his running back,…and you have the makings of a serious championship contender. He’d automatically be the most talented quarterback in franchise history.
9. Atlanta Falcons
The cap-strapped Falcons would have to get crafty to make it work. They’d have to find a taker for Matt Ryan. They’d have to trade Julio Jones. And they’d have to clear out even more expensive players to take on Watson’s contract.
Still, this is a franchise that needs a drastic change. And adding Watson would bring them that much-needed reset.
Many think the Falcons will take a QB with the No. 4 selection and move on from Ryan after the 2021 campaign. We like that idea, but we also like the idea of acquiring a proven top-five NFL quarterback who’s in the early stages of his prime.
Theoretically, Atlanta could offer the No. 4 pick, Jones and obviously additional selections. For Houston, they could even offer to take on Ryan’s contract, then deal him elsewhere or utilize him as a bridge to their next quarterback.
The Falcons wouldn’t be instant contenders with Watson, but he would accelerate their rebuild by a solid one or two years. If they want to fix this quickly, trading for Watson is the solution.
8. Washington Football Team
Though Washington won the NFC East with a 7-and-9 record in 2020, it’s obvious that their long-term quarterback isn’t on the roster. Dwayne Haskins is long gone. Kyle Allen was struggling before his season-ending injury and Alex Smith’s age and injury woes can’t be ignored.
Ron Rivera has quickly turned this team into something special. They have a top-tier defense led by Chase Young. Terry McLaurin and Antonio Gibson are core players to build around on offense. Most of the pieces are in place.
If Washington could just find a long-term answer at QB — something they haven’t had in three decades — they would go from a horrible division winner to a legitimate Super Bowl contender. The draft capital is there, and they could even offer one of their many young pass rushers; Montez Sweat, Jonathan Allen or Daron Payne all come to mind?
Add it all up, and Washington is a great landing spot for Watson if he becomes available.
7. Miami Dolphins
No team would be better-suited to trade for Watson than the Miami Dolphins. The only reason they aren’t higher on this list is because they’re still unlikely to trade for him. I mean, they just drafted the highly-touted Tua Tagovailoa with the No. 5 pick a year ago.
But Miami will at least kick the tires on Watson if the Texans decide to trade him. The Phins, of course, own the No. 3 pick—courtesy of the Texans—as well as the number 18 selection
And of course, there’s more than enough cap space to take on his contract. This team won 10 games by playing musical chairs with Tua and Ryan Fitzpatrick. Now imagine if they had Watson to lead the offense.
Miami could easily offer a package that includes Tua and a couple of first rounders—which the Texans could sure use right about now.
Just saying. Miami could easily make this move if they wanted. But whether they’d move on from Tua so quickly is the question.
6. Denver Broncos
John Elway’s failure to find Peyton Manning’s successor has been well-documented. We wouldn’t TOTALLY object to the idea of giving Drew Lock another year, but if Watson is available, the Broncos should definitely be looking into it.
Denver could offer up their Number 9 selection plus more picks and maybe some key roster players. Would Houston maybe want Von Miller? What about one of Denver’s talented young pass catchers? Or maybe they take a flyer on Luck and see if he can figure things out in a new city.
It wouldn’t be surprising if the Broncos went all-out to acquire Watson. They have to deal with Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert in the AFC West, so why not fight fire with fire?
Landing Watson would change everything for a franchise mired in long-term mediocrity.
5. New Orleans Saints
The expectation is that Drew Brees retires after the 2020 season. And if that’s the case, the Saints will need a successor to No. 9. Sean Payton may want to tell us that he thinks the next Saints quarterback is currently on his roster, but we’re not buying it. We just can’t see him settling on Jameis Winston or Taysom Hill’s as his next franchise signal-caller.
And yes, they have a horrible cap situation. But we’re sure they’d be able to pull off some cap gymnastics. And surely, several Saints would be willing to restructure their deals if it meant getting Watson.
Because the Saints don’t figure to have any top 5 or 10 selections any time soon, they’d probably have to throw in a core roster player or two. Could Michael Thomas be offered up in a potential blockbuster for Watson? There are questions about his future in New Orleans.
Can you imagine the Saints going from Brees to Watson? That’ll extend the team’s Super Bowl window for another 10 years!
4. Chicago Bears
The Bears and their fans are sick of being reminded that they drafted Mitch Trubisky over both Mahomes and Watson in 2017. Well, here is the chance to redeem yourselves!
Chicago’s struggles at QB have been well-documented. Yes, Mitch Trubisky played well in the final stretch to help Chicago sneak into the postseason. But even if he improves from here, he’s still no Deshaun Watson.
The Bears have an elite defense and a better-than-you-think offense led by David Montgomery. If you add Watson, then you have a serious championship-caliber team that could totally dethrone Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers in the NFC North.
With so many expensive veterans on defense, Chicago could even offer someone like…shall we say Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks or Eddie Jackson?…Plus draft picks to get Watson.
Watson should have been a Bear in 2017. Could he be a Bear in 2021? Hey, we’ve seen crazier things happen.
3. New England Patriots
This would be so Bill Belichick to let Tom Brady walk, endure one bad season and then come away with Deshaun Watson to lead the next chapter of your 21st century dynasty.
Cam Newton didn’t pan out in Foxborough, and Belichick knows he’s gotta find a solution quickly. We highly doubt he wants to endure a rebuild at this point in his coaching career. So if Watson is available, why wouldn’t Bill go for it?
It helps that he has a relationship with new Texans GM Nick Caserio, who served as the Patriots’ Director of player personnel for over a decade.
Belichick certainly wouldn’t be shy to throw in multiple picks and maybe one of his stud offensive linemen to get Watson. The guy alone would make the Patriots instant Super Bowl contenders again.
The Buffalo Bills’ reign atop the AFC East could be a short one if Belichick pulls this off.
2. New York Jets
The Jets can offer the world to the Texans… Okay, not quite the world, but pretty close to it.
The No. 2 overall selection and Sam Darnold, who could use a fresh start, would round out a nice package. Not to mention the Jets own the Seattle Seahawks’ next two first-rounders thanks to the Jamal Adams blockbuster trade.
Few would be able to match what the Jets could offer in a trade. New York could easily make an offer that the Texans couldn’t refuse—one that could include up to five early-round selections. Maybe even three first rounders. And they could even throw in Darnold, if they Texans want to take a shot at reviving his career.
Missing out on Trevor Lawrence hurts. The other QB prospects of 2021 are no sure-thing to succeed at the NFL level. But guess who IS already a proven, successful NFL quarterback… Deshaun Watson!
Watson would instantly turn the Jets around, and they could load up on playmakers for him in the stacked free agent wide receiver class. If New York is impatient and unwilling to stick with Darnold OR draft a new quarterback, then Watson is their guy.
Yes, there’d be concerns about giving up all that draft capital, then not being able to build around Watson. But when you get the chance to acquire a top-five quarterback, YOU GOTTA do it.
1. San Francisco 49ers
No team makes more sense for Watson than the 49ers. And perhaps few, if any teams, would top his wish list ahead of Kyle Shanahan’s club.
The 49ers were a couple of plays away from winning Super Bowl 54 with a slightly above average quarterback in Jimmy Garoppolo. The logical decision would be to cut the injury-prone and inconsistent Garoppolo and find an upgrade. In Shanahan’s offense, so many quarterbacks could do better.
San Fran resides in the NFL’s toughest division—with two legitimate Super Bowl contenders and a promising young Arizona Cardinals team. But adding Watson would make San Fran the team to beat in the NFC West, and maybe in the entire NFC.
This roster is stacked with franchise cornerstones, ranging from George Kittle to Nick Bosa to Fred Warner. The 49ers cannot waste their window to compete with this core.
San Fran could offer the No. 12 selection and a lot more for Watson. Maybe the Texans are keen on Garoppolo, who has ties with the aforementioned NIck Caserio from their Patriots days.
Houston needs to bolster its pass rush, and maybe San Fran is willing to unload one of their pass-rushing studs. Dee Ford or Arik Armstead, perhaps?
The 49ers are one top-tier QB away from being a legitimate Super Bowl contender again. If they got Watson, that would put this team over the top. And they can easily top most other team’s offers, thanks to a rich amount of roster talent.
Deshaun Watson is the quarterback the 49ers need to get…if Houston is willing to do business.
Which NFL team do you think is most likely to trade for Deshaun Watson?