Why the Washington Football Team should trade up to No. 4

Washington Football Team owner Daniel Snyder. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Washington Football Team owner Daniel Snyder. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /
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Washington Football Team helmet. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Washington Football Team helmet. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

Why the Washington Football Team should trade up to No. 4

The Washington Football Team has everything you’d hope for in a franchise that’s going through a rebuild. That includes an elite defensive unit that’s littered with young talent and competent weapons around the QB.

But until they have their signal-caller of the future, in a sense, it’s all for nothing. They can have Pro-Bowlers in Chase Young and Terry McLaurin; they can have the top three defense. But until they have their solidified, 10-season starter under center, they’ll never reach the ultimate goal of a Super Bowl and perennial playoff success.

You can’t win in the NFL without a great starting QB. You can point to the Eagles winning with Nick Foles or the Ravens winning with Joe Flacco, but they are the outliers. The goal in the NFL isn’t to have a fluky, one-year run but to have a perennial playoff contender. It’s to have a sustained winning culture, on and off the field.

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With a recent culture change that came to the DMV with the arrival of Ron Rivera and a 2020 Draft Class that proved to be one of the best in recent team history, all signs are pointing up for the program. But in order to build sustained success in the NFL, the Washington Football Team might need to copy a couple of foundational pieces from other franchises.

The blueprint for teams in the NFL in recent history shows that the odds of winning a Super Bowl are better with a QB on their rookie deal. Adding premier talent around an immensely gifted captain of your offense gives you ultimate roster flexibility and upside while giving your QB all the chances in the world to succeed.

As of April 2021, the top 16 QBs are all on a roster with seemingly no way to come to Washington. From Rodgers to Wilson to Prescott to Murray, the better quarterbacks are locked into contracts with their current teams. The only way to pry them free of a deal even if they hypothetically became available would cost the equivalent of giving a player Sean Taylor’s treasured No. 21.

In addition, the amount of cap space these quarterbacks eat up on their current deals is insane. All nearing $40-million dollars annually. With new extensions for guys like Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson on the horizon, the cost to not only trade for them but to keep them at their average annual value seems like too much for a Washington team that has four defensive linemen to sign within the next four seasons.

Washington is currently in a spot where they have competent weapons around the QB and a defense that can go out and win for them when need be. They need an upgrade under center, but that someone must have the ability to be a 10-year starter for the team.

Thus, trading up for their QB of the future should be the move to make as soon as possible. There’s no other option. You can be reactive to the plethora of backup QBs every season and potentially waste the prime years of this defense before they become too expensive, or you can be proactive and trade unknown assets for someone who could be your franchise centerpiece.

The Washington Football Team has a shot to get one of Mac Jones, Trey Lance, or Justin Fields come April 29, should they trade up to No. 4. It’ll be a hefty price to pay, but it ensures that you get a player you believe can be the face of your franchise.

If a QB is your guy at No. 19, they certainly should be your guy at No. 4. Ensuring that you get the best possible scheme fit, combined with someone who has endless upside is the smart move for the Washington Football Team.