As the preseason winds down, teams are already starting to use trades to address weaknesses in their rosters.
It won’t be long before John Schneider joins the fray.
Schneider always makes a trade at some point before the season — he made seven deals from the start of camp to just before the season last year, and he has made 15 other preseason deals since 2010. That’s an average of 2.75 per preseason.
Schneider has been 50-50 in acquiring and moving out players in these deals. Last year, for example, he traded Kevin Pierre-Louis, Cassius Marsh, Tramaine Brock and Jermaine Kearse while adding D.J. Alexander, Matt Tobin, Sheldon Richardson, Justin Coleman and Isaiah Battle (Duane Brown didn’t come until October).
He probably won’t be nearly as active this year, but it’s a good bet he will make some kind of deal — because he always does. So, which trades might he make?
The Earl Thomas-Dallas innuendo continues as the Cowboys struggle to put healthy safeties on the field, but all indications are the Boys are unwilling to offer a first-round pick and the Hawks are unwilling to take less. How about a second-round compromise?
The Hawks are deepest on the defensive line, where they could keep 10 players. And they have such good depth at corner that a couple of good players will be released. Maybe Branden Jackson, Dontae Johnson or Neiko Thorpe would bring late-round picks. Of course, injuries at corner have messed with the value there, so they actually might work it the other way and try to add a guy.
The Hawks don’t have any talent to spare on offense, but they might look to add to the unit. Tight end Ed Dickson still has not practiced and potentially could be replaced, and they might be interested in a better fullback.
On defense, they could use another outside rusher and perhaps a safety.
The Raiders are entertaining offers for Khalil Mack, with four teams (the Jets among them) reportedly serious about trying to acquire the sack master. The Seahawks were mentioned as a team that could pursue him, but Schneider wouldn’t want to pay $20 million a year for a pass rusher (he won’t even want to pay $14 million APY for Frank Clark next offseason).
A more realistic pass-rush possibility, though still a long shot, is Jacksonville’s Dante Fowler. The Jets reportedly checked into him as well. The Jaguars probably would want a mid-round pick for the talented former first-rounder, who brings off-field baggage (a one-game suspension this season) to go with his 12 sacks the past two years.
At safety, the Seahawks could check into Detroit’s Miles Killebrew, who seemed like a Kam Chancellor clone in the 2016 draft. The 6-2, 222-pounder has switched from safety to linebacker under new Lions coach Matt Patricia. Would the Seahawks offer a late-round flier on the former fourth-round pick and see whether he can become Pete Carroll’s new enforcer in a year or two?
Maybe none of the aforementioned players will be traded to or from Seattle, but you can bet Schneider will make some kind of deal — maybe more than one — in the next week.
Carroll said the switch to one roster cut “does make for a very eventful finish to the week and the preparation that goes in for our guys to know what’s happening as best they can going in and then they have to assess the injuries and what happens. It’s like going into draft time again, really. We go right back to work and make sure that we’re making good decisions for our club.”