Cowboys Trade Deadline Rumors: Randle, Forte, Davis


Will the Dallas Cowboys be players in the trade market and if they are, will they be buyers or sellers?

The NFL trade deadline is less than a week away and the trade buzz is starting to pick up. The NFL isn’t exactly known to be the thriving marketplace that the NBA, MLB, and NHL are at their respective trade deadlines but that doesn’t mean we’ll be hearing crickets next Wednesday.

Names like Matt Forte (running back, Chicago), Roddy White (receiver, Atlanta), and Vernon Davis (tight end, San Francisco) are the hottest names on the market this season. Each player is playing at or near the end of their contracts and each player appears to be on the decline.

Hey, they’re available for a reason, right?

It’s important to keep in mind, just because their best years are behind them, doesn’t mean they don’t have something to still offer the right team.

Matt Forte has proven to be one of the NFL’s very best receiving RBs in recent memory. Far from one-dimensional, Forte is a decent runner up the middle, fast enough on the outside, patient to hit holes, and a reliable pass-protector.

The money due him this season is substantial so the Cowboys would have to find a way to make the money work and/or extend the money a year with more guarantees. But trading for a 29 year old runner is a long-shot for the 2-4 Cowboys, especially since Darren McFadden stepped up last week.

Roddy White, who’s under control for two seasons, seems discontent with his role on the Atlanta offense. Talks of trading him have been buzzing around but the Falcons have no reason to trade their modestly priced veteran.

If the Cowboys wanted to try to convince the Falcons, they would have to include actual players and not just draft picks. Maybe a package of Gavin Escobar and Terrance Williams would do the trick? Both are cheaper and still-developing players with moderate upside but I’m not sure even that would be enough.

Vernon Davis is the biggest TE name on the market, who is most likely to be traded. The declining TE from San Fran has disappeared on the offense and can be had for a low draft pick. How much is left in the tank appears to be the question at hand and even optimists think it’s unlikely he will live up to the $4.35M on his expiring contract.

The Cowboys need another under-performing, unreliable TE like they need a hole in the head. This shouldn’t even be considered by Cowboys brass.

All of this talk of the Cowboys being buyers at the deadline may be completely unfounded. After all, the Cowboys are 2-4, in last place of the NFC East, and haven’t won a single game since losing Romo. The Cowboys are far more likely to be sellers than they are buyers.

The only issue is – Who are the Cowboys willing to trade, are they desirable to others, and at what cost are they desirable?

Teams rarely get anything more than low draft picks in return for player trades in the NFL. Joseph Randle, Gavin Escobar, and Terrance Williams wouldn’t garner much in return in the form of draft picks. It’s often times more valuable to keep a player than to trade the player.

Patience is dwindling with Terrance Williams and Gavin Escobar but who’s going to give much more than a 6th round draft pick for either guy? Joseph Randle is diligently trying to wear out his welcome in Dallas but it’s hard to conceive of anyone giving up much for him in return either.

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Rolando McClain is another knucklehead (clinical term) who is seemingly tradeable if the Cowboys give up on the season. But that’s the bigger issue. The Cowboys haven’t given up on the season and still have a slight chance at making the playoffs. With an early trade deadline, most teams don’t know they are out of playoff contention until after the deadline has past.

The Cowboys are one of those teams.

The most attractive trade possibility for the Cowboys may be Roddy White but why would Atlanta risk messing with their offense?  A reliable veteran may not be flashy but it sure is valuable, that’s why I don’t put much stock in his trade rumors.

A runner like Matt Forte would be an instant upgrade, but with the passing game in such flux, would another RB investment even matter? Probably not.

It’s fun to think about trade possibilities but as of now, it’s a considerable long-shot for the Cowboys to get too involved. But then again, a lot can change in a week.

If the Cowboys can somehow manage a win this weekend against Seattle, they may be inspired to seek a deal. If they get destroyed and/or suffer another significant injury, they may suddenly be willing to sell off players. The NFL deadline may not pack the same excitement as the other professional leagues but it still has surprises and could turn the fortune of a franchise.

Next: Breaking Down Matt Cassel's Game

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