Prior to the Tom Brady hysteria, this chaotic NFL offseason was kickstarted by one of the more puzzling trades in recent memory.
The Houston Texans sent DeAndre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals in exchange for David Johnson and a pair of draft picks. Johnson can be a game-changer when healthy and a second- and fourth-rounder shouldn’t be totally scoffed at, but it still feels like an inadequate return for one of the game’s premier pass-catchers.
So, why did the Texans execute the blockbuster? Head coach Bill O’Brien offered some clarity during a recent town hall with season ticket holders.
“He had three years left on his deal and he wanted a raise. And we weren’t going to be able to go in that direction,” O’Brien said, per Sports Illustrated. “We felt like we had a great offer from Arizona that involved picks. That involved an excellent three-down running back who is hungry and humble and just can’t wait to get started. David Johnson is going to be a great addition to our football team. There’s a lot of things that go into trades. Lot of thoughts that go in. How much are you going to take on contractually? How much does it take to buy that second-round pick, that No. 40 pick? What type of player are you bringing in? What type of player are you losing and what is in the best interest of the team?”
Yeah, we can’t imagine that line of reasoning will make Deshaun Watson feel any better about the situation.
While news of the deal broke several weeks ago, Hopkins and Johnson still aren’t officially members of their respective new teams. According to Pro Football Talk, neither player has passed their physical yet, though something will need to give soon seeing as the draft is less than three weeks away.