Posted October 27, 2013

Larry Fitzgerald and Darren McFadden reportedly could move before trade deadline

Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars, NFL rumors, Oakland Raiders
Larry Fitzgerald has five more seasons remaining on an eight-year, $128.5M deal signed in 2011.

Larry Fitzgerald has five more seasons remaining on an eight-year, $128.5M deal signed in 2011. (Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

The NFL trade season tends to be a lot of sound and fury, followed by very little actual movement. That may be the case again this season, but once again several big names may be on the block ahead of Tuesday’s trade deadline.

Arguably the biggest of all: Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald. ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted Sunday that “Larry Fitzgerald will be in play this off-season, in likely event a deal not completed before Tuesday’s trade deadline.” The 3-4 Cardinals would be waving an early white flag by dealing their franchise player prior to the Oct. 29 deadline, but Fitzgerald’s numbers continue to suffer at the hands of a shoddy line and QB play in the desert.

Fitzgerald also has five more seasons left on the eight-year, $128.5 million deal he signed in 2011. Even though he finished shy of 800 yards receiving last season and is sitting on a sub-1,000-yard pace in 2013, Fitzgerald could draw a substantial return package for the Cardinals. That possibility may be especially intriguing ahead of the 2014 draft, which features a bevy of potential star quarterbacks — a position of great need for the Cardinals for multiple seasons now.

CBS’ Jason La Canfora added five running backs to the rumor mill Sunday: Darren McFadden, Maurice Jones-Drew, Mikel Leshoure, Mark Ingram and Ryan Williams.

With the Jaguars possibly headed toward an 0-16 season and Jones Drew’s contract up after the year, the longtime Jacksonville back’s name has come up repeatedly as a trade candidate. But La Canfora reiterated that Jones-Drew’s “high salary and paltry production” have rendered any talks moot thus far — Jones-Drew is set to be a free agent at the end of the 2013 season, so he might be a rental for any team looking to trade for him.

McFadden is the biggest name among the remaining list pitched by La Canfora. Injuries have hindered him both this season and throughout his career, but he may benefit from being asked to do less on a more successful team. If the Raiders cannot move him in the coming days, they would face a decision on McFadden’s impending free agency at the close of the season

Ingram, Leshoure and Williams all have fallen out of favor with their teams (New Orleans, Detroit and Arizona, respectively). Williams, who has played just five games in three seasons, has yet to be active for the Cardinals in 2013. Leshoure only recently rejoined the Lions’ lineup, though he has garnered a mere two carries and has seen most of his limited work on special teams.

Of that trio, Ingram has the most NFL production on his résumé. He rushed for more than 1,000 yards combined over his first two seasons in New Orleans, before stumbling badly to open the ongoing campaign. Ingram carried 17 times for 31 yards in New Orleans’ first two games and has been inactive since with a toe injury.

All of Ingram, Leshoure and Williams may have some upside to offer a team willing to roll the dice, but the price tag may not be worth it for their current teams.

Jones-Drew and McFadden, on the other hand, are more proven — albeit depreciating — commodities. A trade of either of those backs would constitute a significant transaction for an oft-dormant NFL trade market. Fitzgerald swapping teams would move the needle even further into “blockbuster” range.

History has taught us that the NFL trade deadline is more likely to come and go in silence than it is to bring about a momentous move. The trend could snap in 2013, if Fitzgerald, Jones-Drew or another recognizable star finds a new home.

21 comments
The Burning
The Burning

Dallas will land Fitzgerald or McFadden. The wheels are in motion (slowly nodding head).

IndependentsDay
IndependentsDay

As a Cards fan, I can tell you that Fitz won't be traded.  He is too beloved here that if the Cards did trade him, they would lose way too many fans.  The Cards have an easy schedule coming up and can easily be 9-5 going into the last two weeks.  Not time to give up now.  

PeachtreeBart
PeachtreeBart

Seems the Lions could use Fitzgerald, at least if Matt Millen were still in charge!

rich0671
rich0671

He's one example how over paid players are hurting the league and sports in general.

DustinDaigle
DustinDaigle

Personally, if I had to pick the most talented WR in the league I'd have to go with Anquan Boldin.  Despite his stats because let's be honest he has really suffered, having to deal with Flacco over the past few seasons and now Kaepernick who (in my opinion) is a bit overrated.  After Boldin, you could make a case for Fitzgerald, Megatron, Bryant, Green etc.  Not necessarily in that order.  But in terms of pure skill and talent as a WR, Boldin takes the cake.

NEsports27
NEsports27

Fitzgerald is going nowhere.  Which is a shame.  Possibly the game's best receiver (bracing for the criticism of Megatron fans) will continue to languish uselessly on a losing team with QBs who can't get him the ball.  Ever since Warner was done he hasn't had a decent QB.  Put him on the Broncos, Pats, Saints, Packers and the numbers would be staggering

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@rich0671 Yeah, the NFL is on the brink of bankruptcy.   So is MLB.  And the NBA.

bigmouth22
bigmouth22

You sir are a moron, comparing Boldin to Calvin, AJ, or dez you are a fool

bigmouth22
bigmouth22

@DustinDaigle You are a moron, comparing Boldin to Calvin Johnson, AJ Green, or Dez you are a fool

JoeCabot
JoeCabot

@DustinDaigle I don't even think that Anquan Boldin would agree with that one.   When he and Larry F were with the Cards and had a competent QB, the difference between the two was noticeable.

JohnMcCarthy23
JohnMcCarthy23

@DustinDaigle you're a fool if you think anyone is better than Calvin Johnson. Like, clinical, your opinion is no longer relevant.

Mark112
Mark112

@DustinDaigle  

You make some good points but they're not relevant to the topic at hand. 

tdot.allday
tdot.allday

@NEsports27 i would love to see him go to New England .. he would be a great fit and cure all problems that NE offense has been facing. Also he is drama free WR, only few of which exist today. But sadly his 15mill a year contract is a big hinderence ..


kyyled5
kyyled5

@NEsports27Larry's got 422 yards for the season. Johnson had 300+ TODAY.

Love Larry's game, but Johnson's the best receiver on earth.

joe6647
joe6647

@tdot.allday @NEsports27 The Pats would never, not a million years, pick up Fitz's contract.  They only trade for guys they can possibly control for close to minimum salary.


From what I remember the guys they traded for werent making much.


Talib was on a rookie deal, Corey Dillon was on a reasonable deal, Randy Moss also didnt have a huge deal with Oakland.  They gave up peanuts for Wes Welker (and had him under control for a reasonable salary) when they got him from the Dolphins.

EvanBixen
EvanBixen

@joe6647 you are correct....however I would say this is probably the last year that model will work for the Pats...they haven't won a SB in quite some time and it's getting hard for players to drink the Belichick kool-aid when it comes to their salaries....because that's how the Pats have managed to have such stacked rosters until this year....Wes Welker had already had enough of that game and left