This NFL off-season has been all about the Quarterbacks. As of right now, the LA Rams have traded Jared Goff to the Lions for Matthew Stafford and the Colts acquired Carson Wentz from the Eagles.
Not to mention Deshaun Watson’s “I will never play for you” trade request and Russell Wilson’s “I want to play for you, but if I was to be traded, these are the list of teams I’d want to play for” trade request.
Among the teams listed on Wilson’s list of teams he’d want to play for, was the Dallas Cowboys.
For the Cowboys, Russell Wilson is intriguing, as he’s a top-five QB that was better than Dak Prescott, even before the Cowboys quarterback’s devastating ankle injury in week 5 that held him out for the remainder of the season.
Dak Prescott’s future with the Cowboys is looking bleak
Dallas and Prescott are coming into their third off-season of contract negotiations, as both sides are a ways apart on what they want, with Dak looking likely to be franchise tagged again (March 9th is the deadline).
This would create a 37.7 million dollar cap hit on the Cowboys books, and ultimately spells out the end of the Dak Prescott era in Dallas, as he would then be an unrestricted free agent next off-season, free to sign anywhere if a deal isn’t done by then.
The Cowboys should trade for Deshaun Watson, not Russell Wilson
This series of events led me to this idea, “If Dak Prescott’s future with Dallas is looking bleak, and the team and fans are considering trading Dak away for Wilson, why wouldn’t we be more focused on Deshaun Watson??”
Like Wilson, Watson is also a top-five QB but is also much younger, and unlike Wilson, Watson has been much more aggressive in his trade talks, putting the Texans in a much tougher situation. There’s a higher chance Watson gets dealt this off-season than Russell Wilson.
Not to mention, Wilson has been sacked 394 times, an average of 43.8 sacks per season, which is more than any other QB since the 1970 merger. Are we sure we want to take all those hits on?
Deshaun Watson is younger and has been hit far less, both selling points for Dallas.
What a Dak Prescott/Deshaun Watson trade would look like
To bring Deshaun Watson to Dallas, the Cowboys likely would trade Dak Prescott, Michael Gallup, Pick 10 overall in this year’s draft, & next year’s first-round pick.
Why Dallas makes the deal:
If I’m the Cowboys, I take this offer and run. They would receive an upgrade at Quarterback who is signed long term and isn’t coming off of a gruesome injury.
Another thing I like is the fact that Watson’s cap hit is 15.9 million dollars this season, much lower than the 37.7 million dollar cap hit Dak brings if he were to be tagged.
I can already hear fans screaming about sending away Gallup and future draft capital.. but let me explain.
We’ll start with the easiest solution, Michael Gallup. Gallup has been a stud deep threat for Dallas since his arrival, but he is in a contract year and will demand a big payday, one that Dallas simply cannot afford. Trading him away now and gaining an asset like Watson is much better than letting him walk once he hits the open market. Not to mention the Cowboys would still have Amari Cooper and Cedee Lamb as offensive weapons.
As far as draft capital goes, this year’s tenth overall pick and next year’s first is a fair offer to Houston who would be downgrading at QB slightly, and taking a cap hit, not to mention them taking on a risk with Dak’s injury. With Deshaun Watson, Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, Ezekiel Elliot, Amari Cooper, and Ceedee Lamb on offense, along with big names on the defensive side of the ball such as Demarcus Lawrence, Jaylon Smith, and Leighton Vander Esch, the Cowboys 22′ 1st round selection will likely be a late first-round pick anyways.
Why Houston makes the deal:
Let’s just break down Houston’s options as far as potential assets they’d receive if they dealt Watson.
What the Miami Dolphins could offer:
Tua Tagovailoa, Xavien Howard, Pick 3, Pick 36 & 22′ 1st round pick
What the Carolina Panthers could offer:
Christian McCaffery, Pick 8, 22′ 1st round pick, 23′ 1st round pick
What the New York Jets could offer:
Quinnen Williams, Pick 2, Pick 23, & 22′ 1st & 2nd round picks
I just randomly came up with these hypothetical trade scenarios, but none of those fairly made-up offers would come close to the Dak Prescott, Michael Gallup, pick ten, 22′ 1st round pick scenario I came up with.
Injury and money aside, Dak Prescott is EASILY a top-ten QB in the league and one could argue he’s a top 5 QB even. For the Texans, replacing Watson for Prescott would be the best scenario, as Prescott is much better than Tua, and whoever they could select pick two overall, whether that’s Zach Wilson or Justin Fields.
Not to mention, Will Fuller is a free agent this off-season and will be looking to get paid. Gallup can easily slide in as the teams WR1 if both sides decide to part ways, and after almost being a Green Bay Packer this deadline, I don’t see Fuller coming back to Houston.
If I’m the Cowboys, I trade Dak Prescott, Michael Gallup, Pick 10 & our 22′ 1st round pick to Houston for a QB upgrade in Deshaun Watson, and use the additional 21.8 million dollars in cap space saved (Difference in Watson & Dak’s cap hit), and spend it on potential free agents, such as Aldon Smith, and perhaps…Richard Sherman. He has stated he won’t be returning to San Francisco, and very well could look to reunite with his former defensive coordinator in Dan Quinn.
Trading for Deshaun Watson could be a championship-winning move for the Cowboys.