A busy trade window, March ’18 Wrap Up – by Adil Khan Deshmukh

The 2018 NFL season officially got underway on March 14 and there have been plenty of moves across the league. Draft picks have been flying back and forth for the teams and this has shaped free agency and inevitably will dictate a team’s draft strategy come April 26.

One of the biggest trades in the year to-date was agreed in principle in January, with the Chiefs sending quarterback Alex Smith to Washington for Kendall Fuller and a 2018 3rd round draft pick.  This means that the Chiefs have sufficient trust in 2017 1st round pick Patrick Mahomes in taking over the reigns of the offense. Whereas the acquisition of Smith meant that Kirk Cousins had to test the free agency market, which resulted in his monster deal with the Minnesota Vikings.

alex smith
Photo Credit: Ed Zurga/AP Photo

2016 All-Pro Marcus Peters and 2018 6th round pick was traded from the Chiefs to the Rams in exchange for a 2018 4th round pick and a 2019 2nd round pick. Peters is one of the best young cornerbacks in the league, with 19 regular season interceptions in his first three seasons but his hot-headed nature was enough to convince the Chiefs hierarchy to send him away to the Rams. 2018 will be interesting to see how the Chiefs secondary performs without their previous star corner.

The LA Rams in exchange for a 2018 5th round pick acquired veteran cornerback Aqib Talib from the Broncos. Denver had the need of freeing up cap space and their decision was probably swayed by them believing that Bradley Roby is ready to take over the starting position at corner. Talib’s choice of the Rams was influenced by the idea of being reunited with defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. Talib and Peters will most likely slot into the starting positions at corner. Sean McVay will certainly have a few big personalities to deal with in the locker room with volatile characters such as Talib, Peters and the free-agency signing of Ndamukong Suh joining the defensive ranks.

The Rams defense has also had a couple of departures; defensive end Robert Quinn being traded to the Dolphins in exchange for a 2018 4th round pick and a swap of picks in the 6th round. Quinn is a two-time Pro Bowl defensive end, a significant improvement to last year’s starting DE Andre Branch. The Rams managed to clear substantial cap room and may have been influenced by Quinn’s production since back surgery in 2016. In addition to letting Robert Quinn go, the Rams traded Alex Ogletree (plus 2019 7th round pick) to the Giants in exchange for a 4th and 6th round pick in this year’s draft. Ogletree’s performances have not lived up to his first two years in the NFL and the cap space freed in future years could prove handy.

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The Eagles improved their stacked defensive line with the acquisition of Michael Bennett (plus 7th round pick) from the Seahawks with WR Marcus Johnson and a 5th round pick going the opposite way. The Eagles will be concerned by the fact that Bennett has been charged with felony assault of a 66 year-old paraplegic security worker following Super Bowl LI and the NFL will also conduct their own investigation into a potential personal conduct violation. The Eagles also traded WR Torrey Smith to the Panthers in exchange for cornerback Daryl Worley. The Panthers add some much needed depth to the WR position and the Eagles gain a cheap option at corner.

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The Browns cannot do worse than they did last year and they were the talk of the league come March 9 when they made three trades that significantly shook up their team. Jarvis Landry was acquired from the Dolphins after being franchise tagged with a 4th Round pick in 2018 and a 7th round pick in 2019 going the other way. Landry had the second highest number of receptions in 2017 with 112, but was only 17th in receiving yards. The Browns gain a reliable option in the slot, one which the Dolphins really couldn’t afford with their lack of cap space. Landry joins Josh Gordon, David Njoku and Corey Coleman in the receiving core for the Browns.

Jarvis Landry
Photo Credit: Jasen Vinlove/ USA TODAY Sports

After much disappointment at QB in recent times for the Browns, the receivers will be catching balls from Tyrod Taylor, for 2018 at least; with Taylor moving over from the Bills in exchange for a 3rd round pick in this year’s draft. Tyrod is an athletic quarterback who rarely turns the ball over and will most likely act as a bridge for the potential for Cleveland to draft a QB with either the 1st or 4th pick in the draft. The last trade of that potentially fateful day in Cleveland was the acquisition of defensive back Damarious Randall from the Packers. DeShone Kizer went the other way to serve as Aaron Rodgers’ backup and both teams swapped 4th and 5th round picks.

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The first trade that had relevance for the first round of this year’s draft happened when Buffalo sent unwanted LT Cordy Glenn to the Bengals. In doing so, the Bills were able to move up from the 21st pick to the 12th. The Bills have significant needs at QB, and the Bills still hold a significant amount of draft capital; so there is significant speculation over whether the Bills will trade up again.

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Despite signing two quarterbacks in the free agency period, the Jets are likely to draft one in the first round. As of now, the biggest trade relevant to the first round of the draft happened when the Jets moved up to 3rd pick in the draft with the Colts receiving the 6th pick, two 2nd round picks in 2018 and a 2019 2nd round pick. Colts GM Chris Ballard had always stated that the Colts would be ‘open for business’ with respect to trading down and they found their perfect match in the Jets. Indianapolis now hold four picks within the top 50 of this year’s draft and they certainly need them with the team undergoing a significant rebuild. The Jets surely must view three quarterbacks in the draft in high stead for them to jump up to just the 3rd pick.

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Trade rumours will continue to fly around up until and beyond the draft, with teams trying to fill as many of their needs as possible. Could Odell Beckham Jr really be traded away from the Giants, will the Bills move up again or will there be another blockbuster trade for a big name player?

Keep your eyes peeled for future articles here at Across the Fantasy Pond for the best insights into fantasy football and the low down on all things NFL.

Full trade list as of 31-March-2018:

Team 1 Acquired Team 2 Acquired
WAS QB Alex Smith KC 2018 Rd. 3

CB Kendall Fuller

LAR CB Marcus Peters

2018 Rd. 6 (comp)

KC 2018 Rd. 4

2019 Rd. 2

MIA DE Robert Quinn

2018 Rd. 6 (comp)

LAR 2018 Rd. 4

2019 Rd. 6

PHI DE Michael Bennett

2018 Rd. 7

SEA WR Marcus Johnson

2018 Rd. 5

NYG LB Alec Ogletree

2019 Rd. 7

LAR 2018 Rd. 4 (comp)

2018 Rd. 6

LAR CB Aqib Talib DEN 2018 Rd. 5
CAR WR Torrey Smith PHI CB Daryl Worley
CLE Jarvis Landry MIA 2018 Rd. 4

2019 Rd. 7

CLE Tyrod Taylor BUF 2018 Rd. 3
GB QB DeShone Kizer

2018 Rd. 4

2018 Rd. 5

CLE CB Damarious Randall

2018 Rd. 4

2018 Rd. 5

NE DE Danny Shelton

2018 Rd. 5

CLE 2019 Rd. 3
CIN LT Cordy Glenn

2018 Rd. 1

2018 Rd. 5

BUF 2018 Rd. 1

2018 Rd. 6

MIN QB Trevor Siemian

2018 Rd. 7

DEN 2019 Rd. 5
MIA C Daniel Kilgore

2018 Rd. 7

SF 2018 Rd. 7
NE CB Jason McCourty

2018 Rd. 7

CLE 2018 Rd. 6
NE Cordarelle Patterson

2018 Rd. 6

OAK 2018 Rd. 5
NYJ 2018 Rd. 1 IND 2018 Rd. 1

2018 Rd. 2

2018 Rd. 2

2019 Rd. 2

DAL FB Jamize Olawale

2018 Rd. 6

OAK 2018 Rd. 5
TB DE Jason Pierre-Paul

2018 Rd. 4

NYG 2018 Rd. 3

2018 Rd. 4

DEN OT Jared Veldheer ARI 2018 Rd. 6
DEN S Su’a Cravens

2018 Rd. 4

2018 Rd. 5

WAS 2018 Rd. 4

2018 Rd. 5

2018 Rd. 5

2020 Rd. 6 (conditional)

JAX QB Cody Kessler CLE 2019 Rd. 7 (conditional)

By Adil Khan Deshmukh – @dillytoon

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