Three Trades The Redskins Should Look to Make this Offseason

December 4, 2013 in Redskins Personnel

Trading Kirk Cousins-

Why make the deal: I've written about trading Cousins before at length so I won't go into all the details. The fact of the matter is the Redskins have an excess of supply at the most important position in the NFL. Yes Cousins hasn't played that much, but that doesn't mean he doesn't have value to opposing teams. His potential, age,and price tag can all be very interesting to some teams out there this offseason. With Marcus Mariota heading back to school and Zach Mettenberger and Aaron Murray recovering from serious knee injuries, the once deep quarterback class for 2014 isn't as strong. More teams are going to need to go the trade/free agent route to land their signal caller, which makes the market for Cousins that much stronger. Cousins also can offer immediate impact to some teams, but still be a guy who can be the long term option for a team. That makes him more attractive than some rookies and most free agent options.

While it is nice that the Redskins have an insurance policy, Robert Griffin III is their quarterback of the future so having the best back-up QB in the league means very little, particularly when the Redskins have so many needs. Cousins can help the Redskins land some additional quality draft picks and that is what the Redskins need to do.

What can they expect: A lot will depend on how the QB market stacks up after underclassmen declare and if there are any additional injuries out there that force other teams to need a new signal caller. I believe a fair estimate will be a 2nd and a 4th round pick (though possibly the 4th rounder being a 2015 selection).

Trading Roy Helu Jr.-

Why make the deal: Roy Helu Jr. is a nice player for the Redskins, but he's never going to be the starter in Washington and frankly he should even be playing less as Morris needs more touches and snaps. Helu is a quality back-up and 3rd down back for the Redskins, but he's entering his final year of his rookie contract and probably isn't going to be back in 2015. The Redskins can trade him now and get a pick or two that will hopefully help them contend from 2015-2018, as opposed to letting him walk for nothing. The market for a back like Helu may be better than expected. Quite a few teams could use a boost to their rushing attack, and while it doesn't look to be a horrible draft class in that area, it's not also particularly strong either. A cheap semi-proven option like Helu could be attractive to a few teams.

What can they expect: Last year the Saints traded Chris Ivory to the Jets for a 4th round pick in a similar situation. Helu has fewer injuries and has proven himself to be a better pass catcher out of the back-field. I think the Redskins could land a 4th rounder for Helu and possibly a 6th or 7th rounder as well.

Trading back in the 2nd round-

Why make the deal: The Redskins need to make up for not having a first rounder, and though moving back won't fix that entirely it can help get some more picks to the Redskins. Not only can this help bring depth to the team, but if there is a coaching change extra draft picks can help facilitate a quicker rebuild. Now the Redskins could do any number of things here. They could try to trade back only a handful of spots and get one or two lower round picks (maybe 4th and 7th), or they could move back 10+ spots and maybe land another team's 3rd rounder. Some people may be hesitant to move back from a likely top 5-10 pick in the second round, but it's really not the end of the world. With the Redskins having so many needs they can move back some and still find a quality player at a position of need.

What can they expect: This all depends on where the Redskins pick is, and how far they are willing to trade back. Last year from the 34th overall pick the 49ers traded to the 40th overall pick and picked up a 7th rounder last year and a 3rd rounder for this upcoming draft. The Cardinals traded back from 38th overall to 45th overall and landed a 4th round pick for their trouble. The Redskins could at least land a 4th round pick out of the deal and possibly as high as a 3rd rounder.


I realize these might not be the most popular moves for Redskins fans, but they all make sense to help this team build through the draft and get this team the foundation they need going forward. Cousins and Helu are nice players, but they aren't a part of that foundation for the Redskins, so Washington should capitalize and get pieces who are. None of these moves are going to guarantee a turnaround for this team, but they all put the Redskins in a better spot going forward. While the Redskins need quality talent, they need quantity as well. Having a strong draft with a number of extra mid-round picks could help that cause. A draft like this, with a strong and smart free agency period could get the Redskins in a position to contend by 2015.


  • Megan Shoup

    Agree on Helu and trading back in 2nd round…they should do both!

    But not Kirk Cousins! A) May need him for long period of time next season (do we really think Griffin is getting thru another entire season running around and taking the hits he does?) and B) I'm not convinced the wheels totally won't come off the wagon for Griffin! Everyone wants to point to Cam Newton as to what Griffin could be next year, but what if that's not the case next year? Griffin is such an ego maniac, that whether is Shanny or a new coach, I could see issues.

    My gut tells me something isn't right with the Griffin situation and they should hang onto Cousins another season for insurance policy.

  • kenlinkMD

    How about trading up! Maybe play LeRibues the last 2 or 3 games to show case him / build up value (along with the one game he played in 2012) also have the GM to tell any trading partner the truth about him and Coach Shanahan not getting along due to him holding out and being out of shape at OTA's. A number 2 pick with a 3rd year NFL O-Line man could move us up into the late 1 round. I would give up a few later round picks to get a 2 impact players in 2014 like a DT or LB or CB in rounds 1 and 2 (might have to throw in Helu with picks to make it work). As for Cousins, I would wait until we know if Coach Shanahan is going to be here longer than 2014 as QB is always the first thing a new coach looks at, that would give a new coach some options. I hate thinking that way, as I hate having weakness on the field and skill on the bench. Now if we fire coach Shanahan at the end of the year, then everything changes. I would want more draft picks to help replace all the Free Agents that will be running for the door,and I would let the go, giving the new coach more room to pick his type of Free Agents. Also, we could use some of the guys signed that are on IR now, there is some skill on that list. IMO this head coach was keeping as many players as he could for 2014 knowing he had a ton of Free Agents on the 2013 team. I am looking for a ton of turn over in 2014.

    • Steveospeak

      LeRibeus has little value at this point. It's not just a coaching feud he's just not that good. He wasn't worth the 3rd round pick and he's done nothing to prove otherwise since being here. Skins would be lucky to flip him for a 7th rounder at this point.