Minnesota Vikings fans have been shouting into the void all offseason about upgrading on the offensive line.
But at what cost?
ESPN’s Bill Barnwell proposed a wild trade scenario that would send Vikings Pro Bowl defensive end Danielle Hunter to the Dallas Cowboys.
Not for a king’s ransom, but enough to get one of the top two offensive linemen Minnesota is desperate for.
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Barnwell’s Ridiculous Trade Proposal
Disclaimer: Barnwell’s trade proposal is banking on the Vikings making a Hershel Walker trade proportion blunder.
Cowboys get: 1-14, DE Danielle Hunter
Vikings get: 1-10, 2-44, 4-115
Forreal… The Vikings give up Hunter, the youngest player to reach 50 career sacks and the best player on defense to move up four spots in the first round and add second and fourth-round draft picks?
It’s ludicrous, but it’s also an offer Barnwell suggested the Cowboys should make and likely wouldn’t be accepted by the Vikings. However, it does outline the cost ceiling of trading up to get one of the top two offensive linemen in Penei Sewell or Rashawn Slater.
Here’s Barnwell’s justification for his proposal:
By the Johnson chart, this deal would value Hunter as roughly equivalent to the 25th pick in a typical draft; given that he’s coming off neck surgery and is due for a meaningful raise, that’s probably close to fair value. The Vikings would be moving up to grab Slater, who would step in as their left tackle after they cut Riley Reiff. The Giants (No. 11) and Chargers (No. 13) would both be plausible candidates to take Slater ahead of Minnesota, who would then have to address its holes on the edge later in the draft. The second-rounder it gets from the Cowboys would help make up for the second-rounder it shipped off to the Jaguars as part of the ill-fated deal for Yannick Ngakoue last year.
A More Realistic Trade
While Cowboys fans ate up Barnwell’s proposal, the scenario he listed for the Vikings was much more realistic.
Barnwell suggested the Vikings trade down from the No. 14 overall pick and recover more draft capital for next season.
Vikings get: 1-24, 2022 first-round pick
Pittsburgh Steelers get: 1-14, 2022 fourth-round pick
Depending on how the board plays out, the Vikings could still get the player they want 10 picks later and pick up more draft capital — a move that’s been customary by general manager Rick Spielman.
Here’s Barnwell’s take on the trade:
If you want what the Patriots might be having, this is your last chance to get ahead of New England at No. 15. In some scenarios, that could be for a linebacker such as Micah Parsons or Tulsa’s Zaven Collins. Here, though, it would be in a world in which one of the five first-round quarterbacks is still left on the board. The Vikings aren’t taking a quarterback, and they’ll be able to address their defensive depth and tackle concerns later in the first round.
Fans can put all the speculation and trade scenarios to rest when the NFL Draft begins at 7 p.m. CT on Thursday.