With a plethora of offensive line talent this season, there has been plenty of chatter regarding the Kansas City Chiefs shipping off one of their offensive linemen in exchange for some sort of compensation.
This discussion came to a head in early September when Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer wrote that the defending AFC champions were fielding phone calls in regards to reserve offensive lineman Laurent Duvernay-Tardif as a trade piece. And an even more recent trade proposal for the veteran guard has us thinking that general manager Brett Veach should trade Duvernay-Tardif to one NFC team in particular.
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Trade: LDT to Bears
Joe Tansey of Bleacher Report recently wrote about three trades the Chicago Bears should consider making to bolster their roster. One of them involved Chicago sending a draft pick to Kansas City in exchange for Duvernay-Tardif. Here’s what Tansey wrote:
“The rearrangement of Kansas City’s offensive line left Laurent Duvernay-Tardif on the second level of the depth chart. Since the Chiefs are committed to their revamped unit, they could look to get something for the 30-year-old on the trade market. Duvernay-Tardif spent all of his career as an offensive guard, so he would not be a direct solution to Chicago’s struggles at left tackle. If he is one of the best offensive linemen available, it could rework its offensive line to fit him in and give its quarterback more protection. … Chicago may only need a third-day draft pick to acquire Duvernay-Tardif in an attempt to bolster its interior protection.”
Through the weeks of the regular season, the Bears rank 12th in pass blocking and 31st in run blocking, according to PFF. The mediocre protection from the offensive line led to a rather disappointing debut for rookie quarterback Justin Fields, who got his first start in Week 3 against the Cleveland Browns. Fields completed six of 20 pass attempts for 68 yards, and also rushed three times for 12 yards. But the most significant stat: Fields was sacked nine times in that game, per ESPN’s box score.
Would Chiefs Make Trade?
If the Chiefs were offered a third-day pick for Duvernay-Tardif, one would imagine it would have to be a fourth-round pick in order for Veach to pull the trigger on the trade. Yes, Duvernay-Tardif is a reserve option along the offensive line for Kansas City at this time. But having depth on that unit is of the utmost importance for the Chiefs this season after seeing how much a lack of depth impacted the entire offense last season when injuries started plaguing the offensive line.
If Duvernay-Tardif were to be traded, Kansas City does have other options to back up guards Trey Smith and Joe Thuney. Kyle Long, who is currently on the physically unable to perform list, would be the top reserve option when healthy. Then there’s Nick Allegretti, Andrew Wylie, and Austin Blythe, with the latter two better off as a tackle and center, respectively, but are capable of shifting to guard.
After signing Josh Gordon to the practice squad the day after the team’s Week 3 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, Kansas City’s offense should have what it needs to get back on track moving forward. However, their defense needs to add a piece or two along with welcoming back linebacker Willie Gay, who has been on injured reserve and is eligible to return this week. Shipping away Duvernay-Tardif and using that draft capital — or some of the other draft picks they have — to trade for a defensive playmaker or acquiring one via the free agent pool, like recently-released Jamie Collins, is something to seriously consider. Ultimately, this should be something to consider regardless of whether or not a trade happens involving the veteran lineman.