The biggest NFL trade since the draft went down last week when the Saints traded OT Jammal Brown and sixth- or seventh-round 2011 pick to Redskins for third- or fourth-round 2011 pick and conditional sixth-round 2012 pick. Below are some thoughts on the trade; we’ll compare it to other offseason trades in an upcoming Football Relativity comparison.
The Saints won the Super Bowl last year with Brown on the sidelines with hip and sports-hernia injuries, and despite missing the former two-time Pro Bowler New Orleans’ offense moved on just fine. So with Jermon Bushrod in place to play left tackle, and with Brown making noise about wanting a new contract or leaving via free agency after the 2011 season, the Saints decided to get something in return for Brown now. The price – basically either a third- or fourth-round pick- isn’t great, but that should be a roster player for New Orleans. Getting 60 cents on the dollar for an unhappy player trying to come back from an injury isn’t the worst result in the world. Brown moves to Washington, and he’ll probably move positions as well from left tackle to the right side, where he will be a bookend to fellow Oklahoma product Trent Williams. Brown is good enough to excel in that role, the Redskins (who had a horrible offensive line last year) are now starting to address a problem area. If Brown proves he’s healthy, and if the Redskins are able to resign him, he’ll be well worth the price. But taking a gamble on a name tackle with two big ifs is the kind of approach that has blown up in the Redskins’ faces in the past, so it bears watching whether the franchise can actually make this situation work. There’s potential for success in his move for the Redskins, but Washington hasn’t always been able to turn such potential into production, so we view this move with just a bit of skepticism.