NFL Players Who Are Trade Bait Before The Upcoming Deadline

Darren - October 24, 2022

NFL Players Who Are Trade Bait Before The Upcoming Deadline

Darren - October 24, 2022

As the season nears its halfway mark, the NFL trade deadline is approaching quickly and teams are scrambling to do business. Some of them are desperate to remove high earners and will do everything possible to offer them as trade bait. Others are trying to fill gaps in their rosters with last-minute moves.

So today we’ll look at some of the biggest names who may be on the move before the trade deadline. Many of these athletes are desperate for playing time or contract security. It’s also exciting for fans because of the potential arrival of big stars to their teams, so check out the players who could be trade bait below.

Robert Quinn

The Bears threw Quinn into the shop window after he failed to recapture his 2020 Pro Bowl form. They hung onto him throughout the offseason because they wanted to give the pass rusher another chance to prove himself. However, he isn’t lighting up Soldier Field like he used to.

Quinn’s production has dropped significantly this season, with him amassing just a single sack in the first six games. Nonetheless, his experience and profile mean that some teams will see him as trade bait. It’s safe to say that the New York Giants may think that he’s worth a gamble. Quinn probably won’t be staying in Chicago for much longer (via CBS Sports).

William Jackson III showing confidence in second year with Washington Commanders

William Jackson III

A lot is certainly going on behind the scenes in the Commanders’ locker room. Several news sources reported that Jackson wants to leave Washington because he wants to play for a more suitable scheme. However, the cornerback denied this in an explosive interview and says he’s happy in the nation’s capital.

Nonetheless, Jackson is living on borrowed time at FedEx Field because Ron Rivera doesn’t want to keep him. It’s difficult to know where he would go because of his ongoing back injury. Only time will tell where he goes, but the Commanders want to use him as trade bait (via Fansided).

Isaiah Wynn

It’s safe to say that nothing is going smoothly for Wynn in Foxborough after a rough start to the season. The Patriots benched him twice against the Browns and the Packers because he didn’t play well. He allowed sacks and committed penalties that cost his team dearly.

That’s why Bill Belichick wants to offer him up as trade bait. Bleacher Report suggests that a move to the Rams would benefit all parties because of the latter’s weak offensive line. Wynn is a former Super Bowl winner and could revitalize his career in California with a fresh start (via NESN).

Larry Ogunjobi

Nobody will pretend that Ogunjobi is one of the best players in the league, but he is still a useful option. The defensive tackle enjoyed a career year in 2021 with the Bengals. But he is struggling to assert himself in Pittsburgh despite an excellent game in Tampa. That’s why the franchise may use him as trade bait.

Ogunjobi is a good professional and an experienced athlete who brings a lot of character to the locker room. The Detroit Lions are an obvious fit because they have the worst defensive record in the league in 2022. Ogunjobi would raise their standards and improve their chances of a better finish this season (via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

Sam Darnold

Some readers will scoff because they don’t think Darnold and trade bait belong in the same sentence. That’s a reasonable assessment considering his struggles. He failed to show the Jets that he was their franchise quarterback and didn’t assert himself with the Panthers (via Vikings Territory).

But there may be somebody out there who desperately needs a quarterback and takes a punt on him. During the offseason, they mulled a possible trade with the Vikings for Kirk Cousins but that’s out of the question now. If the Panthers could move him, they would but it may be unfeasible.

Lorenzo Carter

There have been suggestions that the Falcons could use Carter as trade bait if it makes sense. Atlanta is performing better than most people expected in 2022 but they’re not going to be in the postseason conversation. Carter arrived on a one-year deal and is making the most of his time in Georgia (via Atlanta Journal-Constitution).

The linebacker is a good player so there’s no reason for them to want to move him on. Nonetheless, money does the talking in the NFL, and somebody may tempt them to part ways. Arthur Smith says that the Falcons won’t do more business after trading Deion Jones to the Browns, but who knows?

David Montgomery

Montgomery is running hot and cold in Chicago but may not be there for much longer. The running back returned from injury but his rushing game was garbage. That’s why the Bears may want to use him as trade bait before losing him as a free agent in the spring.

Another option is to allow his contract to expire before re-signing him but that doesn’t make sense with a running back. Instead, a team like the Ravens may likely trade a fifth-round pick for the player. The Bears must deflate their bloated cap too so it wouldn’t be shocking (via Yardbreaker).

Mason Rudolph

Rudolph is in no man’s land at the moment because the Steelers don’t want him. He’s their third-string quarterback right now behind Kenny Pickett and Mitchell Trubisky. It may seem excessive to describe him as trade bait but it makes sense for the franchise to move him on (via Heavy).

Everybody knows that Rudolph won’t lead a franchise but he’s a decent backup option. That’s why the Patriots may swoop for the former Oklahoma State star. They’re worried about Mac Jones’ injury and the lack of depth behind him. It may make sense to trade for Rudolph because he’ll add experience to their quarterback room.

C.J. Henderson

Henderson is another member of a bloated Panthers’ roster who may be potential trade bait. The former first-round pick didn’t live up to expectations with the Jaguars. He hoped to enjoy more game time in Charlotte but this hasn’t materialized. The team may try to trade him if they can find a willing suitor.

The cornerback is still on his rookie contract so it wouldn’t be too expensive to obtain his services. However, the Panthers will appreciate any dent they can make in their overinflated salary cap. They want to rebuild and this means shifting a combination of dead weight and stars (via The Athletic).

Sidney Jones

It won’t be a surprise if Jones is traded before the deadline closes. That’s because the Seahawks have already made him available and are willing to negotiate with other franchises. They’re happy to use him as trade bait because he fell behind their other three corners (via Sports Illustrated).

In an ideal world, Seattle would keep Jones because he brings experience to the table. But it’s unrealistic and he wants more game time than Pete Carroll can give him right now. Tariq Woolen is the main man for the Seahawks in this department right now but Jones can potentially bring a lot to another team.

Devin Bush

Bush and the Steelers are having a horrible season so it may be time for the two parties to sever ties. Pittsburgh traded up for the linebacker in 2019 but history isn’t kind to this decision. Injuries took their toll on their young man so he hasn’t been able to assert himself properly (via USA Today Sports).

It’s difficult to know where the linebacker goes but he may leave at the end of the season anyway. Perhaps that’s more likely than trade at this point but never say never. Pittsburgh is in freefall mode with a rebuild on the horizon. Bush isn’t the best trade bait yet they may try to get something for him.

Cam Akers

It’s fair to say that Akers isn’t enjoying 2022 very much. The Rams rushed him back from an Achilles injury and he failed to have the impact that he and the team both wanted. Now it appears that a change of scenery could be on the horizon. They may use him as trade bait because it isn’t working out (via FanNation).

FanNation hypothesized that the Seahawks will swoop for the back because Pete Carroll loves a good run game. Akers would fit into the veteran head coach’s preferred system and could be the difference between making the postseason. Seattle is overperforming in 2022 but Akers could help them to the next level.

Mike Gesicki

It’s difficult to find quality players at this late stage of the trade window but Gesicki fits this category. The tight end is a superb pass-catcher but he doesn’t fit well with the Dolphins’ current scheme. That’s why Miami is happy to use him as trade bait.

Sportsnaut suggests that Gesicki would be a good fit for Tampa Bay. Tom Brady is missing Rob Gronkowski in 2022 but Gesicki would offer a good replacement. Alternatively, he could be a useful weapon for Russell Wilson and the Broncos. It would be nice to see him prosper and find the right move (via Sportsnaut).

D’Ernest Johnson

Numerous sources are linking the L.A. Rams with Johnson because of their terrible running game. He’s one of the least-glamorous options on their list but it’s easy to overlook him. That’s because he’s sitting behind Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt in Cleveland so it’s not a shock (via USA Today Sports).

Nonetheless, Johnson is a decent player and is capable of fitting into an expansive scheme. Meanwhile, the Rams wouldn’t have to sacrifice a serious chunk of their cap space on the running back. This may make him more attractive to the Super Bowl incumbents because they can save money.

Kenny Golladay

The Golladay experiment has failed for the Giants and now they want to cut their losses. Unfortunately, his ridiculous salary mean that they’ll have to include some cash or draft picks if they want to shift him. Golladay should have some suitors because he was excellent for the Lions.

Sky Sports

He can’t find playing time with Big Blue but plenty of other teams want a wide receiver. There was a time when he was the best wideout option on the open market but it’s easy to forget that. Another coach could try to get the best out of him because he wants to bounce back (via

Nelson Agholor

Everybody knows that the Patriots want to move Kendrick Bourne on but they may use Agholor as trade bait too. The 29-year-old carries the third-highest cap hit on the franchise’s entire roster. That’s very significant and a major reason why they’d be willing to nudge him out of the door.

Another reason is that he drops the ball too often but the Patriots won’t mention this to any potential suitors. There’s no doubt that Agholor is a good player but his time in Foxborough is coming to an end. He produces some moments of quality but he lacks consistency (via USA Today Sports).

Michael Brockers

The Lions brought in Brockers from L.A. because they thought he would help to shore up their defense. However, they have the worst defensive record in the entire NFL and Brockers isn’t helping. Some people believe that they should keep him because of his experience instead of using him as trade bait.

Nonetheless, a return to the Rams may be the best option for everybody involved. Brockers is entering the twilight of his career and wants to win. Unfortunately, he isn’t in the right situation with the Lions but could still help a contender. It’s a curious situation but he’s still got something to offer (via Fansided).

Rasheem Green

The Texans don’t want to trade Green right now but the reality is that he’s on his way out. The defensive end is having a good season for Houston and is producing strong numbers. However, he will become a free agent at the end of the season and a parting of ways appears inevitable.

That’s why Houston may attempt to make the most of his value now while they can. This is always a tricky situation for franchises because they must choose between the future and the moment. However, the Texans aren’t contenders and are rebuilding so a trade makes sense (via Philly Voice).

Clelin Ferrell

It seems obvious that the Raiders will trade Ferrell because they’re not playing the former first-round pick. Las Vegas is already in discussion with multiple franchises as they look to offload the pass rusher. A separation will benefit both parties because it will give him a fresh start while freeing up cap space.

Atlanta is a realistic destination because the Falcons failed to replace Chandler Jones. They may gamble on Ferrell because it could help them make the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Dolphins and the Rams also have big aspirations. Ferrell could jump to a better situation if everything falls into place (via The Game Haus).

DJ Moore

Moore has been one of the few silver linings in the Panthers’ miserable season. However, he may not be staying in Charlotte for much longer despite his three-year extension. The franchise’s irresponsible cap situation means that they will move some of their bigger names on if they can.

They’ll likely try to use Moore as trade bait because it will ease their financial burden. He would be a solid fit for the Packers because Aaron Rodgers desperately wants an experienced receiver. It’s not an impossible trade and would be a sensible decision for everybody involved (via The Game Haus).

Roquan Smith

Smith is having a statistically impressive season in Chicago but he’s prone to mistakes. The fifth-year veteran commands a significant chunk of cap space so it wouldn’t be a shock if they use him as trade bait. Some analysts have speculated that the Ravens have an interest in the linebacker.

That’s unlikely because Baltimore is in the market for a wide receiver and has to deal with the Lamar Jackson situation. However, the Chargers maintain a good relationship with the Bears and require a strong pass rusher. Don’t be surprised if he moves to West Coast because it would be sensible (via Sports Mockery).

Brian Burns

There’s no doubt that Burns is the Panthers’ most lucrative piece of trade bait. The sack specialist is coming off a Pro Bowl season and is in the prime of his powers. Several more stable teams are crying out for an injection of quality into their pass rush and Burns is an exciting option (via Sporting News).

Carolina must rebuild after Matt Rhule’s departure and Burns may be a necessary casualty. Teams like the Niners or Ravens would love to add Burns to their roster because of his talent. It’s a shame for the Panthers that they’ll lose a genuine star but that’s what happens when a front office mangles their cap.

Albert Okwuegbunam

Okwuegbunam wasted one of the biggest opportunities of his career in Denver. Noah Font was traded to Seattle in part of the Russell Wilson trade, which gave him the chance to stake his claim as the Broncos’ primary tight end. Unfortunately, he isn’t producing for the beleaguered franchise and they may use him as trade bait.

Rookie tight end Greg Dulcich returned from injury and is already making waves as the new starter. The Broncos are rebuilding with a new coach and quarterback but Okwuegbunam won’t be there for much longer. He dropped down their pecking order and now it’s time for them to maximize his value (via The Athletic).

Daron Payne

Washington and Dallas hate each other but Bleacher Report believes there’s a chance that they’ll do business for Payne. This may seem fanciful but nothing is impossible where money is concerned. However, the last time this happened was in 2014 so it may be optimistic thinking (via CBS Sports).

Payne is entering the final year of his rookie contract and may enter the open market in 2023. The defensive tackle will want to make as much money as possible but that won’t be possible in Washington. It may be sensible for the Commanders to trade him before giving him that option.

Rashaan Evans

Atlanta fans won’t like seeing Evans’ name on this list because he’s having a good season. The Falcons gambled on the linebacker after he returned from injury and offered him a one-year deal. Now he’s repaying their faith by playing well for the franchise and impressing fans (via AJC).

But the team is in rebuild mode and business is business. The front office recognizes that Evans is a useful asset who may be worth a draft pick or two in 2023. They may offer him as trade bait if they think that it makes sense. Most fans prefer to keep the proven performer but the NFL is unpredictable.

Denzel Mims

There’s no point in the Jets hanging onto Mims anymore because he doesn’t want to be there. He requested a trade in August but Gang Green held onto him. Now it’s time to cut ties with the want-away wide receiver because they aren’t using him. Robert Saleh didn’t activate him for the first six games of the season.

It’s not surprising that he wants to leave because he wants to play. He may not even need to check real estate listings if the Giants opt to sign him. The surprising aspect of this is that he played well during their preseason but he can’t get a minute during the regular season (via Clutchpoints).

Terrace Marshall Jr.

Marshall is the final member of a plethora of Panthers players on this list. Unlike his teammate Brian Burns, Marshall isn’t having a great season on the playing field. However, he remains young and can turn his career around with another franchise. That’s also why the Panthers would use him as trade bait.

The young wideout had some potential in 2021 but is struggling to repeat those displays this season. We must remember that the team is going through a period of transition so it may not be entirely his fault. But a fresh start would be good for him and a move to Dallas or Green Bay could make that happen (via Fansided).

Kendrick Bourne

The Patriots appear to have an aversion to using Bourne in 2022 because he’s barely featured. He had 55 catches for 800 yards last year but fell down the pecking order. Luckily for him, there are several teams with a dire need for a decent wideout. These include contenders like the Ravens and the Packers but a move to Chicago would make sense.

Justin Fields is a top young quarterback but fans haven’t seen the best of him yet. If the Patriots use Bourne as trade bait and send him to Illinois, he could raise the Bears’ level. Fields lacks a competent receiver corps and Bourne would add an instant injection of quality into their ranks (via NBC Sports).

Brandin Cooks

The Eagles enjoyed an excellent start to the 2022 season but it’s always possible to make a good team better. That’s why they’re showing interest in Houston’s veteran wideout, Cooks. It’s a move that would make a lot of sense for Philadelphia because Cooks is very productive.

Many fans underrate him and fail to appreciate his overall qualities. He’s achieved over 1,000 yards in six of his nine seasons in the NFL. This kind of consistency is very impressive and that’s why the Texans are using him as trade bait. Only time will tell if the Eagles swoop for the experienced star (via Philly Sports Network).