Agent’s Take: Three deals that should have been made before NFL trade deadline expired

The final days before this year’s trading deadline started with a bang and ended with a whimper. On Monday, the Broncos traded outside linebacker Von Miller to the Rams for 2022 second- and third-round picks. The Broncos reportedly converted $9 million of the Super Bowl 50 MVP’s remaining $9,722,222 2021 base salary into signing bonus prior to the trade, which means the Rams only have a $722,222 salary cap charge to acquire him. He is in a contract year.

Miller being moved was the only 11th-hour trade of major consequence before the deadline. It’s the type of deal MLB and NBA teams are more willing to make for what is perceived to be a missing piece to better make a championship run.

Here are three of trades that should have been explored before the deadline that may have improved a team’s chances to make the postseason or go on a deep playoff run. The financial ramifications of the moves are highlighted. Salary cap space is based off NFLPA data.

An acquiring team would have needed enough salary cap room to absorb the remainder of the player’s current salary unless the original team was willing to eat salary like the Broncos in Miller’s case. Since the trades would have occurred after Week 8, the acquiring team would have been responsible for 10/18ths of a player’s 2021 base salary and any other applicable salary components in his contract.

The salary cap situations around the league weren’t ideal for trades. The teams with the most existing cap room like the Jaguars and Eagles aren’t playoff contenders. Most of the contending teams have very limited cap space.

I had a Browns/Saints trade idea centered around a swap of wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Michael Thomas that was scrapped with Thomas now being out for the season because of a setback in his recovery from ankle surgery. A standalone trade of Beckham to the Saints didn’t seem feasible. The Saints have just over $710,000…


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