This time of the year is a fairly common time to discuss trade rumors. After all, the deadline is today at 4pm ET and Dallas is clinging to their 1 game division lead. With such a slim division lead, could a roster addition such as All-Pro DE Jared Allen really make a difference?
Of course he could!
In the NFL today the real difference makers in the season and especially the playoffs are the quarterbacks and the pass rushers. You don’t have to be the best team. You simply need a great QB and/or a dominant pass-rush and anything can happen.
The Cowboys have proven they ARE NOT the best team. Heck, they are barely anything more than just mediocre. But they play in a terrible division and that gives them a chance. Winner goes to the playoffs and in the playoffs anything can happen.
Jared Allen is a great teammate and a top pass-rusher. Plug him in opposite Demarcus Ware, with a dash of Hatcher in between, and we suddenly have a Defensive Line.
A Defensive Line with names (as opposed to the gratuitously heralded, No-Name Line).
Don’t forget what the Giants were able to accomplish with a pretty mediocre 9-7 team. With a dominant pass-rush and a statistically average QB on a well-timed hot streak – they won a Super Bowl. I’m not going to begin to make an argument for the Cowboy’s Super Bowl chances. That’s a battle I want no part of. But with a dominant pass-rush and a QB like Romo – they would at least have a chance.
The details in a trade like this are the real hold-up. Jared Allen is due in excess of $8M for the remainder of the season and Dallas only has roughly $2M available. That is what makes this trade truly unlikely. Minnesota would have to find a way of taking on extra salary to make this work. Trading Miles Austin could make it fit. But seriously – it’s Miles Austin. Not sure anyone would want him under that contract.
But still, if the Vikings and Cowboys want it to work it’s perfectly possible. Word on the street is they’ve had multiple discussions so it’s clearly a possibility. Compensation would be steep. At a minimum it would cost a 3rd rounder and change (change = Austin/later pick/additional young player). Most likely it would cost a second rounder.
Upon first thought, I felt a second rounder was way to high for a player set to become a free agent in 2014. But then I thought about Gavin Escobar. I mean Gavin Escobar is what we do with second round picks. Wouldn’t you trade him in a heartbeat to get Jared Allen for a playoff push in a particularly weak NFC?
Note: I’m not insinuating Escobar is on the market but rather a draft pick of Escobar’s worth may just be worth it.
The Cowboy’s just aren’t very good as constructed. Jared Allen would help them in a very key area heading into the home stretch of the season. It’s a move that’s short-sighted and expensive. But if it gives us chance isn’t it worth it? Especially since the Cowboys will be partially rebuilding next season anyway?
Chances are slim but it’s at least something to think about. If the price is right.
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