Before you get too excited, don’t.
Speculation is what makes the sports news world go ’round, especially when the offseason is east side of bum-fill-in-the-blank.
Rumors have been swirling lately—as they tend to do—of potential trade talks to acquire Panthers’ running back DeAngelo Williams.
Obviously, I don’t know all the sources, but currently at least three teams are rumored to be interested in trading for his services. If three teams are interested, then you can be assured that at least 16 teams are interested as well, give or take a few.
The earliest source of trade interest came from the Detroit Lions. Understandable. But what did they have in mind to trade for a young, stud, Pro Bowl running back? The compensation was nothing short of laughable: their 34th overall, Second-round draft pick for the 2010 NFL Draft.
In the words of Joe Pesci in the movie, My Cousin Vinny, when the judge decided to hold him in contempt of court for a wardrobe malfunction, “you were serious about that?”
Yes, indeed. At least initially, the Lions are interested in trading their early Second-round draft pick for DeAngelo Williams.
My thoughts? “Haha, either try again or look elsewhere.”
Aside from that, I really don’t see the need or want to break up the running tandem this team has. It’s not that it’s not right to break them apart, it’s just that it’s not right to break Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams apart at this time.
Running back Jonathan Stewart has shown that he too can be the work horse running back for the Panthers, but my biggest concern about Stew is the ongoing Achilles heel and toe problem he’s had since being drafted in 2008.
Do the Panthers need a young, fast receiver to complement Steve Smith (or vice-verse)? Yes. Does the receiver have to necessarily come out of the first round? No. Will the potential of selecting a good-to-great caliber receiver exist, when it comes time for Carolina to make it’s selection with the 48th overall pick in the draft? Absolutely.
Which leads me to the next team rumored to have interest in trading for Williams: the San Diego Chargers.
The Chargers are being said to offer their 28th overall pick (a late first-rounder), for the services of DeAngelo Williams.
Am I against the trade? Yes, without a doubt. But from a business aspect, it does make sense.
Williams is only signed with the Panthers for one more year—the 2010 season—and once again with the 2011 season being uncertain at this time, it does make sense to pull the trigger and move up into the first round of the draft.
Gaining back that pick, the Panthers have the ability to draft one of a few needs: defensive end, wide receiver, or quarterback. Maybe defensive tackle, though the team looks pretty much set with that aspect of the defense; in regard to depth at the position, anyway.
A third team which might have interest is the Houston Texans. A trade with the Texans would land the Panthers a higher first -round pick, making a trade deal almost certain.
This move might not necessarily make the Panthers any better, but it will allow the team to regain a pick that it traded away to the San Francisco 49ers in 2009.
If Matt Moore remains the starting quarterback (hopefully), and the Panthers go with a receiver at a high pick, this team has great potential to have a much more lethal passing game than it had with Jake Delhomme starting under center. After all, the NFC South is becoming a more pass-heavy division.