As a follow-up to my post on Trading Up Scenarios for the Ravens, this post looks at trading down from the Ravens’ 1st round Pick #17.
Based on the Walter Football NFL draft value chart, the Ravens first pick at #17 is worth 950 points.
To sell our pick, we have to find another team willing to buy. Here are some possible buyers and what they could sell us.
San Francisco. In addition to its first round Pick #30, San Francisco has two 2nd round picks and three 3rd round picks. It can afford to spend some of that currency to move up to Pick #17. It could use Pick #17 to land a speedy WR or some youth at DT. Pick#30 combined with 2nd round Pick #56 would equal 960 points, or only a hair more than the value of Pick #17. That could land us Jimmie Ward at #30 and give us an extra second with which we could fill a need at RT, CB, DL or WR. One problem with trading with SF is that Pick #30 is it is right after New England picks. New England picked Gronkowski right before we picked Sergio Kindle -- an sad precedent. This year, they need a safety, and they know we do, so I would avoid picking after them. (Of course, trading with New England would largely give us the same benefits as trading with SF, but the Patriots have fewer picks to trade and may prefer to trade down, not up).
Cleveland. Cleveland has its own second 1st round Pick #26 (via Indy) and high 2nd and 3rd round picks. Assuming it uses Pick #4 on someone other than a QB (such as Watkins or Matthews), it may want to come back in the mid-1st round to land a QB. If there is a run on QBs, Cleveland may not want to sit waiting for one to fall to Pick #26. Pick #26 is worth 700 points. Cleveland’s early 3rd round Pick #35 is worth 235 points, and its third pick in the 7th round is worth 13.4 points (a total of 948.4 points), which should be close enough. With Pick #26, we should be able to get Ward, and we would still have our own 2nd round pick plus four 3rd round picks.
Carolina. The Panthers lost Jordan Gross to retirement and have to replace him, among others, on their OL. Their 1st round pick is at #28, and likely too low to land a quality starting LT. If Zach Martin or Kouandjio is available at Pick #17, they may want to trade up with us (if Lewan is there, we’re staying put and taking him ourselves). Pick #28 is worth 660 points, and their 2nd round Pick #60 is worth 300, adding up to 960 points. Thus, trading down with Carolina is identical to trading with San Francisco (points-wise), only the higher picks are reversed (SF offers the higher 2nd round pick and lower 1st round pick). Between the two, I would prefer the higher 1st round pick Carolina offers, because it is right in front of New England at Pick #29.
Houston. As with Cleveland, if the Texans spend their top pick on Clowney, they may want to come back sooner than their next scheduled pick (Pick #33) to land a QB. That’s a big jump, so Houston would have to give up the top pick in the 2nd (580 points), 3rd (265) and 4th (112) rounds to reach 957 points. This deal would give us two 2nd rounders, four 3rd rounders and three 4th rounders. Having the top pick on day two and day three of the draft also has its own benefits (time to reset our board and negotiate with other teams). But there is some risk that Ward could get stolen by the Patriots or Broncos at the bottom of the first round. Another issue is I’m not sure the Texans would feel it necessary to pay us for #17 to get what they want, because the Jets, Dolphins and Bears, picking immediately after us, are unlikely to draft a QB. The next team likely to pick a QB is Arizona at Pick #20. So Houston would likely try to trade with the Bears, which would save them 75 points.
Washington. Washington has the second pick in the 2nd round (Pick #34), but is very unlikely to want to give up so many picks in a draft where they’ve already forfeited their 1st round pick. Bruce Allen is not like his dad, George Allen -- he wants to build through the draft.
Jacksonville. Like Houston or the Browns, the Jags might feel desperate enough to trade up to get a QB if it uses it’s early 1st round pick on a different position, but that’s a very steep price to pay for a team with many needs. Similarly, by the seventh pick of the 2nd round (Pick #39), we are risking losing out on too many high quality players, like Ward and quality OL, WR and CBs.
Final fun fact. Losing the coin flip to Dallas cost us 50 points in the first round alone. Pick #122, a fairly late 4th rounder, is worth 50 points. Dallas picks above us in the other rounds, too, so the value of the "lost" points is probably equal to a mid-4th rounder. In this deep draft, that might be a WR like TJ Jones or Devin Street, or a starting RB.