The NFL’s frantic 2022 trade deadline expired Tuesday afternoon with 10 deals involving 12 players descending on the last day – some of them were executed on the wire.
Perhaps none was the headline that last month’s blockbuster involving All-Pro running back Christian McCaffrey was. But when a player of the caliber of pass rusher Bradley Chubb changes address in the 11th hour – especially when he finds himself on a loaded roster like Miami’s – the balance of power can shift dramatically while the odds of the Super Bowl are frantically revised.
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GO FOR IT : Dolphins trade for Bradley Chubb puts Miami in winning mode now
It’s time to sort out the winners and losers of this year’s very memorable deadline period:
San Francisco 49ers: By winning the McCaffrey contest, they may have set themselves up for far more success than your standard-rate mid-season acquisition. CMC’s impact was evident Sunday against the Rams — after his first full week of practice with the Niners — when he rushed for, passed and caught a touchdown while racking up 149 yards from scrimmage. His presence could make the 49ers, who lost a good quarterback of Super Bowl football last season, the most dangerous team in the NFC as the playoffs roll around. What’s more, he’s under contract for three more seasons beyond this year and should help ease the burden on QB Trey Lance when he takes over the reins from Jimmy Garoppolo in 2023. And while San Francisco likely won’t have plenty of draft next spring, money saved from paying new recruits can be redirected to the mega expansion Pro Bowl DE Nick Bosa needs sooner rather than later.
Miami Dolphins: Their acquisition of Chubb from the Denver Broncos gives the Fins a formidable — albeit currently underperforming — team of passing throwers that includes Jaelan Phillips, Melvin Ingram and Emmanuel Ogbah. Miami’s 15 sacks are currently tied for 21st in the league and the pass defense registers for 26th. But Chubb’s arrival makes everyone more dangerous – especially if he agrees to a new contract that will make him a long-term foundational piece to terrorize Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes for years to come. A later move for RB Jeff Wilson, who knows that offense intimately after playing four years for new Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel in San Francisco, should bolster a 28th-ranked ground game nicely.
Back Tags: The defense that backs the Dolphins’ flourishing passer has improved significantly. The same goes for peace of mind in Tagovailoa. While his 2022 season to date has been massively defined by the concussion controversy he was thrust into a month ago, there’s no denying that Tagovailoa has begun to emerge as a franchise quarterback that he was drafted to be with the No. 5 pick in the 2020 draft. His 279.7 passing yards per game is, by far, a career high – fueled by the arrival of WR Tyreek Hill – and his rating passer of 112.7 leads the league. But the deal with Chubb means a team that had two first-round picks in 2023 three months ago – one was lost in August due to owner Stephen Ross tampering with Tom Brady and Sean Payton – doesn’t have any left, that is, this organization almost certainly won’t. be in the quarter market again for a while.
Omar Khan: The Pittsburgh Steelers’ new general manager began putting his stamp on the struggling team with a few shrewd moves on Tuesday. He traded No. 3 WR Chase Claypool, a second-rounder in 2020, to the Bears for a second-round pick next year — a pick that will most likely be in the top 40 overall given how he stands. unfolds Chicago’s season. Khan also bolstered a struggling defense by removing veteran CB William Jackson from Washington commanders. Pittsburgh has improved in the short and long term.
Trevor Lawrence: The Jacksonville Jaguars’ low-risk, high-reward bet for suspended WR Calvin Ridley, who is out for at least the rest of the 2022 season for betting on NFL games, could result in providing pick No. 1 of the 2021 draft with the No. 1 wide he badly needs … assuming Ridley is reinstated and regains his 2020 form (90 catches, 1,374 yards, 9 touchdowns).
Roquan Smith: The former Bears linebacker is leaving a team that didn’t like him and joining a Ravens team that should be at the heart of the AFC playoff mix. And showing his abilities in Baltimore should be a fantastic opportunity for Smith to aim for whatever extension he wants, whether in Charm City or elsewhere.
Minnesota Vikings Attack: Nice picks up two fourth-rounders and Pro Bowl TE TJ Hockenson through next season for reasonable compensation, a second- and third-round pick headed to the Detroit Lions. Hockenson may not be Rob Gronkowski’s second coming – who is? — but he can improve blocking past QB Kirk Cousins and RB Dalvin Cook while making teams on the field pay for doubling up on Pro Bowl WR Justin Jefferson. The 6-1 Vikes are increasingly legit.
Deshaun Watson: Admittedly, you hate framing the still-suspended Cleveland Browns quarterback as a winner. But if he makes his expected return in five weeks, it won’t be to a squad drained of talent given that RB Kareem Hunt and All-Pro RT Jack Conklin were among those rumored to be on the move.
Carolina Panthers: Dealing with McCaffrey and WR Robbie Anderson, GM Scott Fitterer has replenished his quiver of choice while keeping together an underrated young core of players that includes LT Ickey Ekwonu, CB Jaycee Horn, DT Derrick Brown, DE Brian Burns – all are still on rookie contracts, though Burns needs an extension — and WR DJ Moore, who collectively hold the top non-quarterback positions in football. The Panthers, who look likely to pick early in the 2023 draft, could be a very attractive job next year assuming their quarterback carousel stops spinning.
Odell Beckham Jr.: The superstar free agent wide receiver has now seen where the chips have fallen and should still have marquee options for his services once he decides to sign a deal. The Bills, 49ers, Rams, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers and even the New York Giants – OBJ’s home club – remain among the teams that could use the catcher’s help and will be probably viable during the season.
Buffalo Tickets: Considering them losers is certainly relative. But can you imagine what the acquisition of McCaffrey or Alvin Kamara – the Bills have made serious inquiries for both versatile backs, according to reports – could have done to further propel a 57-year-old franchise away from its championship? most recent (AFL variety)? Their deal with the Indianapolis Colts for fast halfback and returner Nyheim Hines is a nice consolation … even if the explosive but tiny Hines is a situational player who can only handle a limited number of touches. Meanwhile, Chubb’s move to the Dolphins, the only team to beat Buffalo this season, certainly cements Miami as a looming threat to the Bills and Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC.
Brandin cooks: A veteran of two Super Bowls and an experienced wide who could have impacted almost any offense, Cooks is stuck with the Houston Texans for at least a few more months … and possibly much longer considering he’s under contract through the 2024 season. According to ESPN, the Cowboys pushed Cooks, but his $18 million guaranteed salary for 2023 was too big a hurdle.
Los Angeles Rams: The defending champions knocked out McCaffrey and their reported offer of multiple first-round picks for Burns was rebuffed. With no one capable of helping them “pick them,” the Rams (3-4) may be watered down even as they attempt to overcome their various injury-related hurdles in order to mount a title defense. Additionally, coach Sean McVay must now figure out how to rebuild a bridge to exiled RB Cam Akers, for whom a move never materialized.
Elijah Moore: Unhappy and untargeted, the 2021 second-round pick is also deadpan, sticking with the New York Jets despite catching just 16 balls this season.
Jared Goff: The Lions already had several first-round picks in 2023 and could now have all the ammunition they need to replace their current quarterback with the one they truly covet in the long run.
Ryan Polish: Chicago’s rookie general manager had done a good job of siphoning off players like Smith and DE Robert Quinn, who weren’t part of the Bears’ future, for much-needed draft capital. But giving up a second-round pick for Claypool, even if Chicago’s lowest-ranked passing offense needed help, felt like a major reach. Claypool hasn’t proven he can be a consistent No. 2 receiver let alone the 1 or 1A he’ll likely become by default in the Windy City.
Zack Moss and Chase Edmonds: A day from the penthouse to the outbuilding for the two running backs. Moss is leaving Buffalo for Indianapolis as part of the Hines deal, while Edmonds is moving from South Florida to Denver as part of the Chubb package.
Aaron Rodgers: Shit, man. The struggling Packers haven’t budged — even though it’s almost universally agreed they need receiver help — on a day the Lions conspired to boost the Vikings’ NFC North title aspirations by sending Minnesota Hockenson . Mired at 3-5, if the Pack’s playoff viability wasn’t already in serious question, it certainly is now.
Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 2022 NFL Trade Deadline winners, losers: Bills, Packers miss out
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