Rumors: Patriots were willing to offer Redskins 2020 first-round pick for Trent Williams
Trent Williams doesn’t appear to be returning to the Washington Redskins, yet the team reportedly turned down a first-round pick for him in trade talks with the New England Patriots.
The Trent Williams saga is still ongoing and with two weeks left until the NFL season opener, the time to deal the left tackle in running a bit thin. While it may be nice for the squad to wait until a truly tackle-needy team makes a godfather offer for the perennial Pro Bowler, their leverage will soon run out if Williams doesn’t report to start the season.
For that reason, it’s a bit odd that the Redskins reportedly had a seemingly solid offer on the table for Williams but weren’t willing to bite.
According to Kevin Sheehan of The Team 980 and JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington, the New England Patriots reportedly were will to offer the Redskins a 2020 first-round pick in exchange for Williams. However, their efforts were rebuffed, as the ‘Skins thought the package wasn’t enough.
The Patriots’ interest in Williams certainly makes sense. They lost last year’s starting left tackle, Trent Brown, to the Raiders in free agency. They do have former first-round pick Isaiah Wynn waiting in the wings, but he just played for the first time last week after suffering an Achilles tear last preseason. Wynn could easily win the starter job, but the team doesn’t have depth behind him; Dan Skipper, a 6-foot-10 third-year player out of Arkansas, has performed well this offseason, but using the unproven commodity as a swing tackle could be risky.
With the Patriots needing to protect Tom Brady as their window to win Super Bowls remarkably remains open, acquiring Williams to start with Wynn operating as the swing would make sense. That would give them proven, veteran protection for Brady and would protect them against any injury issues. Plus, it would afford them the opportunity to continue to develop Wynn as the swing. And if Williams needed a maintenance day, they could afford to give it to him.
However, the Redskins apparently think that they can get more than what would likely be a late first-round pick for Williams. Perhaps they were angling to pick up and extra asset, like a Day 3 pick, in the trade. Or maybe they could even have a high-upside player, like the 24-year-old Skipper, added into a potential deal.
That said, turning down a first-round pick does come with some risk, especially when dealing with the Patriots. Bill Belichick is very particular about the values he places on players, so unless he viewed the tackle depth as a glaring problem, he probably wouldn’t adjust the deal much. And right now, it’s unclear what other offers might be out there for Williams and if any involved first-round picks.
While the Patriots’ pick would almost certainly be late and could even be the last pick in the first round, it would still be a nice asset for the Redskins to have. After all, they lost their 2020 second-round pick in the move to get Montez Sweat, so adding a second first-rounder could give them a chance to move down, recoup the second-round pick, and add another asset.
Alas, it appears that the team is still holding out hope that they can get more for Williams. Or maybe, they’re hoping that he’ll return. But either way, at this point, it does seems that the Redskins will have solid offers on the table if they do make Williams available. But will another team offer a first-round pick and more for him? That remains to be seen.
UPDATE: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the rumors are “unequivocally not true”, so make of them what you will.