A few teams other than Atlanta that Washington could call about trading up

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Peter Hailey
·4 min read
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Non-Atlanta teams that Washington could call about trading up originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Last week, reports emerged regarding the Falcons' apparent openness to trade down from the fourth spot. So, naturally, discussions followed about whether Washington should become the other half Atlanta needs to pull off such a deal and, most likely, try and acquire a potential franchise-changing quarterback.

However, jumping from the 19th selection all the way up to the fourth choice would cost the Burgundy and Gold lots of capital. Lots.

Also, while Washington would guarantee itself someone like Trey Lance or Justin Fields by swapping places with the Falcons, the team could still grab one of those prospects somewhere further down the order should one or both of them slip.

So, if Ron Rivera and his front office would rather wait and see how the draft is unfolding later this month, gauge if a passer is getting passed on and then take advantage of that scenario, they could forgo calling Atlanta and instead try to partner up with one of these other organizations.

The Lions

Where they're picking: 7th

Why they'd be open to a trade: Detroit has a new head coach (one who's ready to snack on some kneecaps) and a new general. In Jared Goff, meanwhile, they have a suitable quarterback in place who's under contract until 2024. 

Goff doesn't necessarily preclude the Lions from adding to their QB room via the draft, but he's still just 26, meaning that if they can make things work with him under center, they could rely on him for many more seasons.

Therefore, the thought of parting ways with the seventh pick and acquiring more assets that coach Dan Campbell and GM Brad Holmes can use to build a better roster around Goff could be an appealing one.

When new regimes take over in the NFL, there's typically a major focus on bringing in players that fit their mold and their style, and Detroit would have the chance to do more of that by letting Washington take over its current slot. 

The Panthers

Where they're picking: 8th

Why they'd be open to a trade: By grabbing Sam Darnold from the Jets, Carolina has put itself in position to address other sections of their depth chart if they so choose. 

Now, they could very well opt to do that by simply staying put, but with an offense that was 24th in scoring in 2020 and a defense that was 18th in scoring last year, Matt Rhule needs to further round out both sides of the ball to help make the Panthers a legit contender.

Plus — and sorry if this is too bold or too much of a stretch — Rivera appears to have a decent relationship with his former club, and he now has Carolina's old GM, Marty Hurney, on his side, too. If anyone could convince the Panthers to do a deal, it'd be those two.

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The Chargers

Where they're picking: 13th

Why they'd be open to a trade: First, let's quickly examine the board. 

After Carolina, the Broncos are scheduled to be on the clock, and then the Cowboys, Giants and Eagles will follow. Once the non-Washington NFC East squads wrap up, then it's LA's turn.

Denver could be a team for Rivera to ring, but the Broncos have a fresh GM and haven't seen a ton out of Drew Lock, making them a real candidate to pounce on Fields or Lance. Due to that, they shouldn't be considered a realistic option to negotiate with, and neither should any of Washington's rivals. That's why the Chargers are being mentioned on this list.

Hoping that there will still be a top quarterback available all the way down to No. 13 is risky, but if two of them tumble to Denver and Denver takes one, then that long shot could become a reality.

And with Justin Herbert representing the Chargers' future, they could probably be talked into moving down as long as they're comfortable that they'll be able to secure an offensive tackle to protect Herbert with Washington's choice at 19.