It’s getting to be that time of the year. The NFL trade deadline is three weeks away. The make up of the NFL has already taken shape for the most part. We know the contenders from the pretenders, the Super Bowl favorites from the obvious tankers. The New Orleans Saints should be one of the teams looking to “buy” rather than “sell” at the deadline, and you know Mickey Loomis is just itching to make a trade.
If you’re short on draft capital, which the Saints are considering they have already traded away their 2020 2nd and 7th round picks in the Erik McCoy and Eli Apple moves respectively, you might be left trying to add players in free agency. The quality of the player is likely a tier lower than what you could get on the free agent market, but at least you aren’t giving up valuable draft picks.
Here are two realistic trades the Saints should consider plus an alternative option as a free agent.
Trade a 2020 3rd, 5th, and 2021 2nd to the Cincinnati Bengals for A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert
It is no mystery the Saints could use help at the wide receiver position alongside Michael Thomas. A.J. Green is a former elite option that presents an immediate upgrade at the position assuming he’s fully recovered from his ankle injury. At tight end, Jared Cook has failed thus far to live up to the hype, but even still the Saints only have two tight ends on the roster in Cook and Josh Hill. An elite pass catching tight end like Eifert could go a long way for the passing attack.
Last year, a healthy Golden Tate was traded for a third round pick. This year, there’s question marks surrounding Green’s health and he’s a year older than Tate at the time of the trade. Granted, Green has shown to be a far better receiver than Tate in his career when healthy, but that’s why the Saints would pony up a little more. If the Bengals want to trade Green and/or Eifert, trading to the NFC would make the most sense, so this is a move that could be mutually beneficial for both organizations as well as Green and Eifert who move to an immediate Super Bowl contender.
Other potential trade targets: Emmanuel Sanders (DEN), Davante Parker (MIA), Stefon Diggs (MIN)
Free agent options: WR Dez Bryant who should be recovered after a torn Achilles and has previously voiced a desire to return to the Saints and TE Ben Watson who was recently cut by the Patriots after failing to make the active roster after serving his suspension
Trade a conditional pick to Washington for Adrian Peterson
This one might stir up a fair amount of backlash, but a reunion with Adrian Peterson makes a lot of sense for the Saints right now. Latavius Murray, like Jared Cook, is another free agent acquisition who hasn’t impressed in limited work so far in 2019, and a power runner like AD between the tackles could go a long way for helping the offense pick up third-and-short or second-and-goal from the two.
The Saints traded Peterson to the Arizona Cardinals back in 2017 for a conditional draft pick, and now Peterson is two years older and on the dumpster fire that is the Washington football team so the price shouldn’t be that much different. Washington has just fired their head coach and they could be looking to continue to shake things up. Peterson previously voiced displeasure after ending up a healthy inactive in Week 1, and Washington clearly wants to roll with Derrius Guice as their running back of the future. If Washington puts Peterson on the block, the Saints should be willing to kick the tires if he can be had on the cheap.
Other potential trade targets: Kareem Hunt (CLE), Melvin Gordon (LAC)
Free agent options: RBs CJ Anderson and Jay Ajayi are both free agents, with the latter coming off an injury that scared teams away in the off season and the former recently cut by the Detroit Lions. This might actually be a scenario where the trade for Peterson comes at a cheaper price than signing someone like Ajayi.
What says you Who Dat Nation? Do you disagree? Tell me other players you think the Saints realistically could or should acquire? Do you think the Saints should make a run for someone like Jalen Ramsey or Trent Williams? Let me know in the comments. Send me presents.