What Player Should the Giants Trade?

For the past few weeks Giants fans have been envisioning dumping underperforming players such as Evan Engram (who actually played well yesterday) and Lorenzo Carter for draft picks. Of course after yesterday, as Ralph Vacchiano points out, the Giants are not far from the last wild card spot despite their poor record:

And there are a lot of winnable games left on the schedule. But we know the Giants aren't a winning team yet. Would we trade places with WFT, who got their 7-9 division title and a playoff game last year? The price was giving up a draft slot from which they could have chosen Justin Fields as their QB of the future. And this year they are showing that they are still in re-building mode.

The Giants are still in re-building mode. Giving up Engram and Carter for late round draft picks is not going to move the needle much. To move the needle, you have to trade a valuable player at the right time to the right team. Consider a suggestion that @JustinPenik made this past winter about what we might have done in 2020, knowing that we were probably not going to be able to pay Dalvin Tomlinson:

This makes a lot of sense to me. Trade a good player you know you are going to let go anyway, get something valuable for him, and get a preview of what life is going to be like without him before the draft. (I know, many of you wanted to keep Dalvin, this post is not about that, it's about what you do once you've decided not to re-sign a player.)

In this vein, I saw an interesting suggestion recently from @StevenHaglund:

As he indicates, Austin Johnson is having a really good year: 3 sacks, 33 tackles, 5, TFL, 4 QB hits. He is playing about 60% of snaps for the Giants. He is signed for 1 year, $3M. He'd be nice to keep, but we have little cap room to re-sign him, and this is his chance to get paid decent money.

Meanwhile the LA Chargers are serious Super Bowl contenders. But they have problems defending the run. They were absolutely gashed by the Ravens a couple of weeks ago, revealing their soft underbelly on defense. They are surely buyers rather than sellers at the trade deadline.

The Chargers have all their usual draft picks for 2022, plus they are anticipated to get a few round 6 comp picks. Austin Johnson was a round 2 draft pick (#43) by Tennessee. This year he is playing like a round 2 pick. Might the Chargers be willing to let go of their round 2 pick to get a guy that might help them go deep in the playoffs?

Of course this would create a big hole for the Giants. We would have to play Danny Shelton, who has been awful, more, or give more playing time to David Moa or even Raymond Johnson III (by moving LW inside more). And the results would probably be worse, although in the vein of Justin Penik's tweet, it would allow us to see what Moa and Johnson III can do before the next draft.

And we would then have 2 round 1, 2 round 2, and 2 round 3 picks in 2022. Plenty of chances to grab a replacement IDL in the draft. I like it. What do you think?

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