On the Monday mailbag edition of the AP Laboratory, we were asked for some Kansas City Chiefs non-starters general manager Brett Veach could trade for a potential high-upside player.
Veach has made moves right before roster cutdowns with regularity — such as acquiring Charvarius Ward for offensive lineman Parker Ehinger. Last year, he moved one-year rental running back Carlos Hyde for three years of offensive lineman Martinas Rankin.
The Chiefs have had success in these player-for-player trades. So who could Veach move on from as part of another similar move in 2020? We had some suggestions.
Darwin Thompson, running back
Thompson was one of two running backs active for the Super Bowl, and he was stopped short of the goal line on his lone carry of the game. While he was able to earn that opportunity to suit up in Miami, his chances of seeing playing time in a crowded backfield aren’t high. Clyde Edwards-Helaire was the Chiefs’ first-round pick and is primed to see a good portion of the snaps. It’s going to be tough sledding for a former day-three selection.
Thompson had fans coming out and could be an appealing piece to a team in a flyer-for-flyer move similar to the Ward trade. With many options already on the roster, the Chiefs could move Thompson for a position in which they may be more thin.
Breeland Speaks, defensive line
An underwhelming rookie campaign followed by a season-ending injury and four-game suspension was not the start Breeland Speaks planned for his NFL career. It is a make-or-break year for the Ole Miss product: he’ll either be motivated by the adversity or his time in Kansas City may be drawing close its end.
Speaks could be a prime candidate for a change of scenery. On the podcast, Craig suggested a linebacker-for-defensive lineman trade with the Cardinals: Haason Reddick for Breeland Speaks. I’d love a move like that to help potentially improve the linebacker position.
Damien Williams, running back
Veach spent the only first-round pick he’s made in his career as a general manager to draft over who some people believe was the Super Bowl MVP. Edwards-Helaire is here to improve a running back position that was inconsistent last year. Damien Williams was a high-variance runner throughout the season — the Chiefs want more play-to-play consistency and are hoping to get that out of their rookie.
Where does that leave Williams in a contract year? Perhaps on the trade block?
The Chiefs have Edwards-Helaire, Darrel Williams, Darwin Thompson, as well as DeAndre Washington (do not sleep on him) in the running back room ready to play on day one. Williams’ stock will never be higher — he’s an asset that could appeal to a team wanting a veteran running back. The Chiefs can save over $2 million in cap space and sell high.
Actions speak louder than words here, and the Chiefs made a significant move to go in a new direction at running back both now and in the future. They can do right by Williams to give him more opportunity somewhere else and pick up an additional asset. Does Bill O’Brien have any more top 100 picks he wants to give up on too early?
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Who of these three players is most likely to be moved in a trade?
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