What could the New York Jets give up for a star wide receiver?
With Tyreek Hill heading to the Miami Dolphins, the New York Jets are looking elsewhere to get help at wide receiver.
ESPN’s Rich Cimini reported on Sunday that the Jets are keeping an eye on star fourth-year wide receivers A.J. Brown, D.K. Metcalf, and Deebo Samuel, who are each due for a lucrative contract extension in an exploding wide receiver market.
The Jets have connections to all three players.
Jets wide receiver Elijah Moore played with both A.J. Brown and D.K. Metcalf at Ole Miss. Brown and Moore are extremely close as shown by the former’s reaction when Moore was drafted.
Titans star WR AJ Brown shed tears after his Ole Miss teammate Elijah Moore got taken by the Jets.
This is so real. @brgridiron
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 1, 2021
Brown would likely love the opportunity to reunite with his former teammate.
Meanwhile, Deebo Samuel has an obvious connection to several members of the Jets coaching staff from their time in San Francisco. The Jets also signed former 49ers guard Laken Tomlinson to Samuel’s disappointment.
— Deebo (@19problemz) March 14, 2022
The Jets have a need at wide receiver. I think Corey Davis will bounce back in year two and I have written about why Elijah Moore can be a number one target, but in the modern NFL, you can never have enough weapons.
We have already seen two big wide receiver trades this season, and there were a few more over the last several years. By looking at these trades, we can get a general idea of what it would cost for the Jets to acquire one of these players.
Recent blockbuster wide receiver trades
Arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL was traded earlier this month when the Green Bay Packers sent Davante Adams to Las Vegas. In exchange for the 29-year-old star wide receiver, the Packers received a first-round pick (22nd overall) and a second-round pick (53rd overall) in the 2022 draft.
This trade and Adams’ ensuing five-year, $141.25 million contract resulted in the next player leaving his team in search of big money.
The Jets almost had Tyreek Hill but he instead went to Miami where he received a monster four-year, $120 million contract. The Dolphins sent a first-round pick (29th overall), a second-round pick (50th overall), and a fourth-round pick (121st overall) in the 2022 draft as well as a fourth-round pick and a sixth-round pick in 2023.
In previous years, the closest wide receiver trade to these two blockbusters occurred in 2020 when Buffalo traded for Stefon Diggs. In exchange, the Bills sent the Vikings a first-round pick (22nd overall), a fifth-round pick (155th overall), and a sixth-round pick (221st overall) in the 2020 draft as well as a fourth-round pick in 2021.
After selecting wide receiver Justin Jefferson with that first-rounder, the Vikings are quite happy with their decision.
So what could a big-ticket wide receiver trade look like for the Jets?
Potential trade package
An obvious starting point is the Jets’ offer for Tyreek Hill. The Jets were reportedly prepared to send their two second-round picks (35th and 38th overall) and their third-round pick (69th overall) in exchange for Hill and a fourth-round pick (103rd overall).
In terms of point value on the draft trade chart, this package is worth more than either the Adams or Hill trades. However, both of those players wanted new contracts and/or to be traded.
Brown, Metcalf, and Samuel are young and have not had any public issues with their teams over eventual extensions. Teams have reportedly made calls on Metcalf but the Seahawks do not appear ready to move him… yet.
Sources tell me the Packers and Chiefs have inquired about DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett’s availability.
Seattle is open to listening to offers for their star WRs but nothing is imminent.
— Jack Settleman (@jacksettleman) March 23, 2022
Everyone has a price and the Jets have more than enough draft capital to pay what it takes for these players.
Given the premium value of the Jets’ current first-round picks (4th and 10th overall), they probably will not include either of those selections in a potential trade. Instead, they may opt to send their 2023 first-round pick along with their third-round pick in this year’s draft (69th overall) to get the deal done.
After the trade, the Jets would likely sign their new star to a contract. With the recent deals signed on the wide receiver market, they’ll want a sizable contract.
Potential contracts would likely range between DeAndre Hopkins’ $27.25 million and Mike Williams’ $20 million. A reasonable expectation is a contract in the $22-$25 million range for these stars.
Will a trade actually happen?
Until Davante Adams and Tyreek Hill were about to be traded, everyone expected them to go back to their respective teams. Things change fast.
But there is currently no indication that Brown, Metcalf, or Samuel are available.
However, Adams’ record-breaking contract already facilitated Hill’s departure from Kansas City and he likely won’t be the last player whose plans are altered by the booming market.
On @SEASports710, John Schneider said there's a "sense of shock" at the size of recent WR deals. That was in response to a question about extending DK Metcalf in the current market. Said they love him and emphasized how impactful he is. Declined to go in depth about an extension.
— Brady Henderson (@BradyHenderson) March 24, 2022
There is no telling what can happen in the NFL. Players have changed teams like never before this offseason and it likely won’t stop any time soon.
New York has the picks to make a blockbuster move and a young quarterback who needs a reliable target. The 2022 draft features another talented wide receiver class, but as I went into here, very few rookies are ready to produce Week 1.
That’s why I believe the Jets should trade for one of these three players. Add any of them to the Jets’ current offense and they can finally start dreaming of the playoffs.
With a month until the draft, general manager Joe Douglas will explore every possible option to support quarterback Zach Wilson. Only time will tell if his next move at the wide receiver position will come in the draft or by trade.