Could the Las Vegas Raiders trade deadline activity pick up and help the team make moves to help secure the team’s first playoff appearance since 2016? We take a look at possible moves that could help the Raiders in 2020 and beyond.
Last season it was rumored the Raiders trade deadline activity could have included a big splash. Instead, the Raiders “big” move was trading disappointing cornerback Gareon Conley for a 3rd round pick to the Houston Texans.
This season the Raiders are 3-3 heading into Week 8 against Cleveland in early contention for the seven wild card spot and a moderate schedule over the final 10 weeks, an active trade deadline may be on the horizon.
With the Raiders struggling on defense, and several of their big-money free agents underperforming, a Raiders trade deadline deal – either as buyers or sellers – is possible. We’ll break down some potential trade deadline targets for the Raiders, as well as some players who could be on the move from Vegas.
Raiders Trade Deadline Targets
Ryan Kerrigan, EDGE, Washington
It’s been no secret the Raiders pass-rush is the team’s biggest weakness. With the lack of production from the likes of Maliek Collins, Clelin Ferrell, and Carl Nassib inconsistent, the Raiders could look to veteran Ryan Kerrigan of the Washington Football Team. Although Kerrigan is on the back-side of his career, he would instantly plugin as the Raiders 2nd best pass rusher, and be tied as the Raiders sack leader with four.
At his age, and the contract price, the Raiders could obtain Kerrigan for a 4th round pick or later and they should jump on it. The Raiders need a reliable option to rotate in at the edge position, and it should help 2nd-year player Maxx Crosby on the other side.
Marucs Maye, S, New York Jets
The Raiders have struggled at the safety position in 2020. Johnathan Abram has been injured (again) and is still learning the strong safety position and 2019 standout Erik Harris has struggled mightily. Marcus Maye is a good young free safety that would instantly upgrade the position for Las Vegas. Maye is a playmaker that can help Abram develop as well.
Considering Maye is in the final year of his contract, he may be had for less than you would think. I believe a 4th rounder should get a deal done, and hopefully the Raiders would be able to lock him in long-term.
Brian Poole, CB, New York Jets
The Raiders haven’t gotten the production they’d like from slot corner Lamarcus Joyner. Guenther and Gruden have been adamant on keeping Joyner at that position instead of moving him back to safety. However, If the Raiders made a trade for what I consider one of the most underrated slot corners in football Brian Poole, things may change. Poole has a 77.0 overall grade on PFF, and has already registered 2 interceptions on the season. Poole may not be a splash move fans are looking for, but he would help solidify the young secondary for the time being.
Considering he’s a rental and the Jets are in fire sale mode, a Day 3 pick should get this deal done. If the Raiders have their eye on more Jets players, it could be a key to a bigger trade.
Quinnen Williams, DT, New York Jets
Although a trade for the young Williams maybe a little tougher to get done, the Jets are reportedly shopping the former Alabama standout. Williams had a rough rookie season by some metrics, but still showed flashes of the top 5 draft status. This season, he has shown why the Jets took him in the Top 5 in the 2019 draft. Williams has registered three sacks and 25 tackles on the season in 2020. Those numbers would make Williams the Raiders most productive interior defensive lineman by a large margin.
Considering the draft stock it took to get Williams, the price won’t be cheap. The Raiders would likely have to have a package around a Day 2 pick to start. Mayock has shown how much he loves his picks, so the price may be to steep. In my opinion, it’s worth it because Williams is on his rookie deal. He gives the team another young player to build around, which is exactly what you would look for in the 2021 draft.
Derek Barnett, EDGE, Philadelphia
The Eagles have been rumored to be sellers, which may or may not be true at this point. They do have a plethora of pass-rushers and some may be expendable. Barnett stands out because he has a $10 million cap hit in 2021 – something the Eagles may be looking to shed.
The Raiders could take on a deal like this, because they will have some cap space to work with in 202 and Barnett will instantly help their pass-rush. Similar to Kerrigan, Barnett could step in immediately as a top option for the Raiders. The cherry on top with Barnett is that he is only 24 years old. Barnett may cost a little more than Kerrigan, because he is under team control next season, and doesn’t carry it $11 million this season. However, seeing the Raiders hit rate on 3rd round picks, getting a proven pass-rusher seems wise.
The Raiders as Sellers at the Trade Deadline?
Under Jon Gruden the Raiders have traded both Gareon Conley and Amari Cooper at the trade deadline. This season it seems less likely that they sell, they don’t have too many moveable pieces. However, there are a few guys that could be on the move.
Zay Jones, WR
In the off-season, we heard all about how Zay Jones was going to make an impact in 2020. Unfortunately for him, the Raiders have too many options ahead of him. He won’t offer much trade value, but a team like the Patriots could express some minor interest. The Raiders have options on the practice squad to act as the WR6 on this team and may want to add some Day 3 picks for next season.
Marcus Mariota, QB
It does seem far-fetched, and I wouldn’t give up any draft capital for him if I was an NFL team, but if someone comes calling, the Raiders should consider. The contract is a bit high, but a team like Dallas could be interested in trying to salvage their season. Mariota has produced at the pro level and could offer a better option than Andy Dalton for them. His deal is expendable at the end of the season or he could re-structure to try and keep a job in the league. Mariota for any draft stock would be a good deal for the Raiders.
Trent Brown, OT
The Raiders free agent moves haven’t worked out great the past two seasons. Brown has been pretty good when on the field but has been hindered by injuries. Gruden has voiced some frustration in the past about availability and if the deal was good enough the Raiders may bite. Trent Brown’s contract is under team control for the next two seasons, and a team that is offensive line needy may consider making a splash move. It’s a long shot but if someone calls, the Raiders should listen. Either way, Brown will most likely be in a new zip code in 2021.