Eagles could have a unique strategy for the NFL Trade Deadline

NFL: OCT 27 Seahawks at Falcons
ATLANTA, GA – OCTOBER 27: Atlanta Falcons Defensive End Takkarist McKinley (98) sprints onto the field before the NFL game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Atlanta Falcons on October 27, 2019, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA.(Photo by Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire)

We have arrived at the 2020 NFL Trade Deadline and the Eagles have yet to make a trade, weird right?

After the 23-9 win over the Dallas Cowboys, the Eagles sit a game and a half over the team in Washington. The team has close to a billion holes on the roster and for them to finish the season strong, some moves need to be made.

However, the cap space in 2021 may prevent significant moves from being made. Luckily, there are players around the league in their final year of their respective contracts and could help Howie Roseman achieve a compensatory pick in 2022 for their services.

With the recent trades involving 2022 draft picks, it got me wondering: could Howie trade for a player using a 2022 draft pick and receive that same round in compensatory when the player leaves via free agency? For example, could Howie trade a 2022 6th round pick and then allow the player to leave via free agency and sign a contract that would net the Eagles a 2022 6th round compensatory pick?

Comp pick formula

For a player’s signing to qualify for a compensatory pick, it needs to follow the following formula.

It’s safe to assume that the Eagles won’t be trading for anyone that will net them a 3rd round comp pick in 2022, but what about the lower half?

Possible names

Takkarist McKinley – DE – Atlanta

With Derek Barnett as a possible trade candidate, it’s worth exploring if a trade for the player 12 spots after Barnett is possible.

The two players’ career numbers are extremely similar. Barnett has more tackles in less games, and the same amount of sacks in less games, but the one big difference is the contract.

McKinley has about $984K left on his contract for this year and is a free agent for next year, as his fifth-year option was declined. Although Barnett’s option was picked up, his contract can be terminated prior to next season.

If the Eagles decide to part ways with Barnett by cutting him to shed his contract, they would not be in line for a compensatory pick. A player needs to fulfill the entirety of his contract to be eligible for a compensatory pick. Since Barnett technically has a year left, he is not eligible unless he plays out 2021 with the Eagles.

So why not deal Barnett, lose his $10 million hit for 2021, gain a pick for him, and add a player in McKinley that can help in 2021 and provide a comp pick for 2022?

McKinley could fetch himself a nice contract in the 2021 offseason that could net the Eagles a 2022 fifth-round compensatory pick. With that in mind, a 2022 5th round pick could be enticing enough for the Falcons to part ways with McKinley.

Curtis Samuel – WR – Carolina

A wide receiver? Yes.

I know, I know, it’s not the most pressing of needs. With Fulgham, Reagor, and Ward holding down the fort in the starting line up and with Hightower being the deep threat off the bench, wide receiver is the least of the many worries.

But you can never add too much talent.

Samuel has about $645K left on his deal if he is traded at the deadline, and is a free agent at season’s end.

He’s been a pretty big part of Carolina’s offense in 2020 but the 3-5 Panthers probably won’t be bringing him back in 2021, making him a prime trade candidate.

Adding Samuel’s receiving and rushing element to the Eagles offense could offer some possibility for some actual creativity, something we’ve all been yearning for.

At the end of the season, Samuel could net a contract that could get the Eagles a 2022 6th round compensatory pick, which is the round I believe could convince the Panthers to part ways with him for.

Montravius Adams – DT – Packers

The Packers need wide receivers. The Eagles have a couple (Jeffery, JJAW) to offer.

Fourth-year defensive tackle Montravius Adams seems to be the odd man out in Green Bay along the defensive line. The Eagles have some depth issues at that position with Hassan Ridgeway out for the season. Could a JJAW/Adams swap work?

He may not be the Adams that Eagles fans want from Green Bay, but he could provide a pass rush upgrade for the Eagles defensive line. Yes, the defensive line has been pretty good this year, but adding a DT who ran a 4.87 40 yard dash (an important drill for that position) is intriguing. He was lauded for his pass-rush ability while at Auburn. Adding him to the mix could help down the stretch in 2020.

As with Samuel, Adams could net the Eagles a 2022 6th round compensatory pick if he performs well. At the very worst, he’ll net a 7th round. Send JJAW and a conditional 7th round 2022 pick to Green Bay.

Justin Simmons – S – Denver

Would this be a Chris Infante article without some farfetched trade? C’mon.

Simmons and the Broncos couldn’t agree to a long-term deal in the summer and he is poised to net a big contract in 2021.

A big enough contract that could net the Eagles a 2022 3rd round compensatory pick.

However, I doubt a rebuilding team like Denver would want a 2022 pick for Simmons. Could they be enticed with a 2021 5th and 2022 3rd for Simmons? Possibly. The argument here would be that the Eagles are taking on the rest of the $6 million for this season, which would be eating into their roll over for next season.

It’s far fetched, but a secondary with Simmons and McLeod at safety while Parks roams the hybrid LB role is very, very enticing. With the CB depth being very shallow, adding Simmons would move Mills back to CB and provide some stability with Slay, Maddox, and LeBlanc. (NRC stinks.)

While not a “free” deal as with the others, it could end up being one pick sent to Denver for Simmons with a 2022 3rd round compensatory pick canceling out the original 3rd round pick.

Photo by Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire