Commanders 2023 midseason awards: Biggest Surprise
- Trading Montez Sweat and Chase Young
It's not every day that a team trades two former first-round picks who also happen to be pacing the team in sacks. Chase Young and Montez Sweat had a combined 11.5 sacks for the Washington Commanders before being moved on hours before the 2023 deadline.
Although both were free agents after this season, the long-held belief was one of them would sign a long-term deal with the other potentially being franchise-tagged. The organization had other ideas.
The Commanders received a second-round pick from the Chicago Bears for Sweat. This could end up being a high-end selection considering how much the NFC North team is struggling heading into their Thursday Night Football clash against the Carolina Panthers.
Young - a former No. 2 overall selection who had the generational tag placed on his shoulders coming out of Ohio State - was sent packing to the San Francisco 49ers for nothing more than a compensatory third-rounder. This sort of deal lends weight to the fact both the player and the Commanders were eager for a fresh start.
Washington is now rich in draft assets and will also have some extra salary-cap space without having to commit a large financial sum to Sweat or Young. The deals made sense in many ways, but that didn't stop the trades from shocking almost every Commanders' fan when the news broke.