Houston Texans general manager Nick Caserio made it clear Friday the organization has “zero interest” in trading quarterback Deshaun Watson.
This doesn’t mean the Texans won’t ultimately be forced to move on from the three-time Pro Bowl selection, though. And it definitely won’t stop rumors from continuing to surface in wake of Watson reportedly requesting a trade out of Houston.
Heck, even the Green Bay Packers were floated in an imagined four-team blockbuster also involving likely NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers, first-round backup Jordan Love, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and the New England Patriots.
Yeah, it’s a gong show out there. And one of the more bonkers, albeit compelling, trade ideas was tossed out Friday by former NFL quarterback Dan Orlovsky, now an analyst for ESPN.
Orlovsky suggested the New York Giants, the runners-up in the weak NFC East, should offer their starting quarterback, the 2018 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year and a bunch of draft capital for Watson.
“If I was (general manger) Dave Gettleman of the New York Giants, I would take Daniel Jones, I would take Saquon Barkley and I would take three first-round picks, and call Houston and not allow them to get off the phone with me,” Orlovsky said on ESPN’s “Get Up.”
So, who says “no” in that deal?
Probably the Texans, if anyone, right? Unless the Giants truly believe Jones, the sixth overall pick in 2019, is capable of blossoming into a franchise quarterback, in which case New York also might be hesitant to pull the trigger on such a league-altering trade.
Barkley, coming off a torn ACL, is a special talent who turns just 24 next month. So he’d certainly add a layer of explosiveness to Houston’s offense. But franchise quarterbacks are far more valuable than running backs, even if someone in your fantasy football league argues otherwise.
“As a general manager in this moment, if ever you were gonna take a swing, this is the swing to take,” Orlovsky said. “If Deshaun Watson was coming out of college football this year, everybody in the NFL I think — outside of maybe Kansas City (with Patrick Mahomes) — would be trying nonstop to get the first pick. ‘What package do we have to put together to go get the first pick?’ This is the same type of situation.
“As a general manager, the last thing you wanna do is look back with regret that we didn’t try hard enough, that we didn’t throw in one extra first-rounder. That’s type of player and person that you’re gonna get with Deshaun Watson.”
It’s unprecedented for a player of Watson’s caliber to become available. He’s an elite quarterback just entering his prime at age 25. Plus, he’s on a reasonable contract after signing an extension with Houston back in September that runs through the 2025 season.
It’s been suggested that the Texans might garner at least three first-round picks if they trade Watson. But even that might be selling Watson’s true value short, further evidenced by Orlovsky’s proposal.
“Who as a general manager is gonna get creative? How creative are they gonna get to go get one of the best players in the NFL?,” Orlovsky asked Friday. “This is the time where you can make your career as a general manager.”
Jones, Barkley and three first-rounders for Watson is crazy to think about. Is it crazy enough to work?