Sherman to Green Bay?

Richard Sherman, one of the most polarizing players in the NFL, has been the subject of trade talks in recent months. Sherman has been in the news repeatedly since entering the NFL in 2011, both for the quality of his play and quantity of his comments. His disdain for the league’s leadership (such as commissioner Roger Goodell) couldn’t be clearer, and he’s never shied away from calling his team or his teammates out. That being said, no player has walked the walk quite like Sherman has. In his six NFL seasons, he’s made four pro-bowls while accumulating 30 interceptions, 92 passes defensed, and 332 tackles, all while never missing a single game. To top it off, he’s shown repeatedly to be a clutch player, providing game sealing plays for the Seahawks in the playoffs, and he’s played in two Super Bowls.
Photo via KC Confidential
It’s unclear why the Seahawks are hearing trade offers for one of their defensive cornerstones, but the possibility of a player like Sherman changing teams with two years left on his contract has put several teams on notice. As for possible destinations, he’s been linked to the Patriots, Falcons, Titans, Jets, Browns, Raiders, and Chargers, among others. The one team nobody has linked him to? The Green Bay Packers. Sherman is in many ways a defensive version of the newly acquired Martellus Bennett. They are both vocal players who want to win at all costs and who hold themselves and their teammates accountable. Players of this nature aren’t typical in Green Bay, where the team runs a ship tighter than any other, save for the Patriots, but Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy appear to slowly be forging a new identity in an attempt to win at least one more Super Bowl while Aaron Rodgers is still playing at mythical levels.

Anybody with half a brain cell can tell that the Packers need help in the secondary. They ranked 31st in pass coverage in 2016 and haven’t made many changes, other than signing Davon House. The team will likely add a corner in the draft as well, but they still need either another move to improve the unit or massive improvement from last year’s guys. What better way to improve the cornerback position than by adding one of the 10 best players at the position in the NFL?

The asking price for Sherman is pretty clear, a high draft pick and a high level player. This seemingly goes against every fiber of Ted Thompson’s being. Trade away a draft pick and give up a quality player that is still being developed? Sounds almost like treason, doesn’t it? But as long as Ted is breaking the mold and signing multiple free agents, who’s to say he won’t go a bit further. For the sake of consideration, we’ll assume that any trade would require at minimum the Packers’ 2017 second round draft pick (probably the first round pick). What player could they pair with it? Here are a few options.

Jason Spriggs – Offensive Tackle
The Packers traded up in the second round to take Spriggs last year, and he played admirably as a backup in his rookie campaign. However, the team has David Bakhtiari and Bryan Bulaga locked up with long term contracts at tackle and has made claims that suggest Spriggs won’t be moved to guard to replace T.J. Lang. While quality backups are extremely valuable, pro bowl starters are even better. Seattle had a notoriously horrible offensive line last season and may welcome the addition of a young talent like Spriggs in exchange for Sherman.

Bryan Bulaga – Offensive Tackle
The argument for trading Bulaga is nearly identical to trading Spriggs. Each team fills a position of need with a quality player. In this scenario, the Seahawks get a player of similar age to Sherman rather than a young player, and the Packers insert Spiggs into the starting lineup in place of Bulaga.

Demarious Randall – Cornerback
This move would constitute some reshuffling for Seattle, as they replace one corner with another. However, Randall wouldn’t need to be the No. 1 guy in Seattle and he’s young enough to develop into a top quality coverman down the line. The Packers would get an instant boost with Sherman and the Seahawks would get a quite, consistent, young replacement.

Photo via Ray Carlin / USA Today Sports
Do I think it’s likely that Ted Thompson and Seahawks’ general manager John Schneider strike a deal? Heavens no. Do I think Sherman would transform the secondary? Hell yes. Trading a top pick and one of the aforementioned players would be a bold win-now move that Thompson has never made, but there’s a first time for everything, right? No, it’s not likely, but it’s possible, and what is there to do in the offseason other than embrace beautiful possibilities like this?


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