For those who may be unfamiliar, D.J. Swearinger is a five-year veteran safety for the Washington Redskins. Swearinger played a mentorship role last season for then-rookie cornerback Kendall Fuller, who is now a Chief via the Alex Smith trade.
When the trade went down back in late January, Swearinger was very unhappy, and he took to Twitter to air his grievances.
Not the #1 slot corner in the game? No way!— DJ Swearinger (@JungleBoi_Swagg) January 31, 2018
Was There Ever A Standard On How It Was Done!! When Is Elite Overlooked!?! When Is Your Best Not Worth Fighting For?? This Is A Tough One! ♂️— DJ Swearinger (@JungleBoi_Swagg) January 31, 2018
Swearinger appeared on NFL Network this week to discuss why the trade impacted him so much:
“I sat in the meeting rooms with Kendall Fuller,” he said. “Last year he was a rookie. I saw the struggles he’s had as a rookie and to come in and watch him grow—in the meeting room, OTA one to the end of the year—seeing him grow into the tremendous player he is, it just hurt me a little, to see a young guy who can grow to be one of the best DBs in this league, to see him walk away, it kind of hurt me a lot.”
Swearinger added that he did not understand the move at the time, but now that a few weeks have passed, he gets it.
“We wanted Alex, and we needed Alex, and we needed to give [the Chiefs] a player to get Alex, and Kendall was the guy that they wanted, and that’s what happened.”
We’ve talked about why the Chiefs liked Fuller so much plenty on this site, including a film review that left RealMNChiefsfan wondering how the Redskins could part with him.
Film reviews matter, and so do outstanding Pro Football Focus grades, but the distress in Swearinger when the deal was made and his comments now speak even more volumes.
“A young guy who can grow to be one of the best DBs in the league.”
By the way, Fuller is 23.
What an acquisition for Kansas City. I can’t wait to watch him play.