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Peter King: Seahawks “more likely” to trade CB Richard Sherman before the draft

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The Patriots aren’t one of the top options.

MMQB’s Peter King dedicated a section of his weekly scribe to discuss the possibility of the Seattle Seahawks trading CB Richard Sherman. King is on board with CSNNE’s Tom Curran and ESPN’s Mike Reiss that the New England Patriots won’t be the top landing spot for Sherman, but King thinks that the Seahawks are “more likely” to trade their star cornerback before the draft.

“I think there are five clues about the possibility of Richard Sherman being traded that lead me to believe it’s more likely than not he will be traded, and probably before the April 27 first round,” King writes in his weekly MMQB column.

King goes on to list the following reasons:

  1. Sherman is “aware of the trade talks” and “wouldn’t mind it happening.”
  2. The Seahawks leadership have “acknowledged it’s possible.”
  3. Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll highlighted Sherman’s sideline explosions, despite the fact he “very rarely says anything about his players remotely negative.”
  4. Sherman and Marshawn Lynch (?!) “went too far” with their freedom of expression allowed by the team, so “getting rid of Sherman...could be the logical next step.”
  5. Sherman is in his prime and effectively under an affordable 2-year, $22 million contract that could entice a wide number of “cornerback-needy teams.”

While I disagree with point number four, the other thoughts make plenty of sense. Both sides could want a fresh start out of Seattle and Sherman is playing at an elite level while under an extremely affordable contract.

But Sherman wants to play for a contender, limiting the number of landing spots. King notes, “the Patriots chose to give huge money to Stephon Gilmore, and I doubt they’d employ two corners making in excess of $11 million a year. Just not their way.”

So where could Sherman end up? Oddsmaker Bookmaker.eu has opened odds on where Sherman will start the 2017 season, and here’s the list:

New Orleans Saints +300
Oakland Raiders +400
Atlanta Falcons +500
Dallas Cowboys +550
Tennessee Titans +600
Seattle Seahawks +800
Jacksonville Jaguars +1200
Green Bay Packers +1600
New England Patriots +3000
Field +350

The Saints are clearly in the market for a cornerback, but are they really a contender at this point? The same applies for the Jaguars, although they make sense from a schematic standpoint; but Jacksonville just handed out a big contract to A.J. Bouye this offseason- would they want to go for Sherman, too?

The Raiders are paying $8+ million to both Sean Smith and David Amerson; the Falcons are paying $9.5+ million to both Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford; and the Titans are paying $8.5+ million to both Logan Ryan and Jason McCourty. These three teams don’t make sense from a contractual standpoint.

This leaves the Cowboys, Seahawks, Packers, and Patriots, as well as a “field” option like, say, the Steelers. These teams should all contend for the next couple of seasons, while the Cowboys, Seahawks, and Steelers have more obvious openings in their defense for Sherman.

The Steelers don’t acquire players for high draft picks (biggest acquisition since 2000: CB Brandon Boykin in 2015 for a 2016 5th round pick), which leaves the Cowboys as potential suitors.

And what would be a more Dallas move than acquiring a player like Sherman? The Cowboys have less hesitation iving up top draft picks for players (WR Joey Galloway for a pair of 1sts in 2000; QB Drew Henson for a 3rd round pick in 2004; WR Roy Williams for a 1st, 3rd, and 6th in 2008), they are about to enter the 2017 season with Nolan Carroll, Orlando Scandrick, and Anthony Brown as their starting cornerbacks, and they represent a team on the upswing.

That’s where I would project Sherman going prior to the draft, although I still think he’ll remain in Seattle after the two sides work out their problems.