By: Ryan Cooley
Before the 2019 regular season began, I wrote an article about why the Redskins should trade Trent Williams. Fast forward almost seven months later, and we are back to square one. The Redskins announced last week that Williams and his agent are allowed to seek a trade.
During the season, reports said that the Browns offered their first-round draft pick for Williams. However, Bruce Allen believed he could get a better price. He ended up just causing the Browns to withdraw their offer and end negotiations. If the deal had been done, the Redskins would hold the 2nd and 10th overall pick in this year’s draft.
The Redskins still believe that they can get a first-round pick out of Williams. It is very difficult to say what his value is. In reality, he will be 32 years old, just took an entire season off, and has not played a full 16-game season since 2013. Another factor is his determination to get a new contract. Whatever team trades for him better be willing to make him the highest-paid OT in the league.
Even though there is a lot of red flags, there is no denying that finding a premier LT in the NFL is almost as difficult as finding a franchise QB. When healthy, Williams is one of the best in the league. I believe the need for LTs will end up boosting Williams’ trade value.
When trying to figure out what his value is, keep in mind other left tackles that have been traded. In 2017, Duane Brown was traded to the Seahawks for a second and third-round pick. At the time, Brown was almost the same age as Trent. Both are very good LTs, but Willams is better.
Laremy Tunsil was traded to the Texans this past season. Tunsil, WR Kenny Stills, a fourth-round, and a sixth-round pick were exchanged for two first-round picks, one second-round pick, and a couple of players. This was obviously a very different situation with Tunsil being much younger and other players being involved, but it goes to show what teams are willing to give up for a premier LT.
There are reportedly five teams that have already expressed interest in a potential trade for Willaims, which will also raise his price tag.
The Redskins would be wise to ask for a first-round and go from there. In negotiations, you always ask for more than you expect to get. If they get an offer for a second and third-round pick, I believe you have to take it. That will give them four picks in the first three rounds.
It would also be smart to make the trade before free agency begins. The Redsins will save $12.5 million by shipping Williams elsewhere. That will give them around $73 million to work with in free agency. This team needs a number of upgrades, and the more cap space, the better.
Overall, the Redskins should get reasonable compensation for him. I believe the most realistic trade will be a second-rounder, but I can see them getting a second and third if teams begin to get in a bidding war. I do not think a first-round pick is likely, but crazier trades have happened.
It seems Williams is much more likely to get traded this time around, especially due to the fact that they now have a competent front office. Trent will go down as one of the best players to put on a Redskins’ uniform, and I wish him nothing but the best where ever he ends up.