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Trading draft picks for veterans

(By John McDonnell - TWP)

I'm going into this blog post with my eyes wide open. I realize that every single Redskins fan who reads it will hate it, and will hate me, and accuse me of incurable anti-Redskins bias.

But after the team acquired a third external player this season essentially by trading a draft pick (Jammal Brown, following Adam Carriker and Donovan McNabb) I was curious just how many times the team has done that in, say, the past decade. And I was similarly curious how many times the Redskins had done the reverse: traded an unwanted spare part and received at least one draft pick in return.

I realize that you can't analyze these trades in a vacuum. I realize that offensive tackle and quarterbacks were both huge needs for this particular team, and that every trade must be judged on its own merits. I realize that some of these trades actually worked out. I realize this is old news. I realize everything. I was just curious.

Trading players exclusively for other players doesn't count. Trading draft picks exclusively for other draft picks doesn't count. Trading up to select a particular player doesn't count. Signing restricted free agents and thus forfeiting picks doesn't count. I'm just interested in cases where one of the primary carrots the Redskins held out in a trade was a draft pick, and in the reverse. There isn't a great database of this stuff, so please tell me if I missed any.

Picks For Players:

June 2010: Traded either a third- or fourth-round pick for OT Jammal Brown.

April 2010: Traded a second-round pick and either a third- or fourth-round pick for QB Donovan McNabb.

July 2008: Traded a second-round pick and a sixth-round pick for DE Jason Taylor.

May 2008: Traded a seventh-round pick for DE Erasmus James.

August 2007: Traded a fourth-round pick for G Pete Kendall.

August 2006: Traded a third-round pick and a fourth-round pick for RB T.J. Duckett.

March 2006: Traded a third-round pick and a fourth-round pick for WR Brandon Lloyd.

March 2004: Traded a fifth-round pick for WR James Thrash.

March 2004: Traded CB Champ Bailey and a second-round pick for RB Clinton Portis.

March 2004: Traded a third-round pick for QB Mark Brunell.

August 2003: Traded a seventh-round pick for DT Lional Dalton.

August 2003: Traded a seventh-round pick for DT Martin Chase.

February 2003: Traded a fourth-round pick for RB Trung Canidate.

August 2002: Traded a fifth-round pick for G Brenden Stai.

Totals: Traded 1 player and 18 picks (2 second, 4 thirds, 5 fourths, 2 fifths, 1 sixth, 3 sevenths) for 14 players.

[Break. Take a breather.]

Players For Picks

April 2010: Traded QB Jason Campbell for a fourth-round pick.

March 2007: Traded S Adam Archuleta for a sixth-round pick.

March 2006: Traded QB Patrick Ramsey for a sixth-round pick.

July 2005: Traded WR Rod Gardner for a sixth-round pick.

March 2004: Traded FB Bryan Johnson for a sixth-round pick.

August 2002: Traded QB Sage Rosenfels for a seventh-round pick.

Totals: Traded 6 players for 6 picks (1 fourth, 4 sixths, 1 seventh).

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 23, 2010; 12:57 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
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Posted by: franky4fingers | June 23, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

It would be helpful if you took it a step further and list what players were taken with those draft picks.

Posted by: tsbrul1 | June 23, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

The instant gratification owner who satisfies no one.

Posted by: disgruntledfan | June 23, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

It would be helpful if you took it a step further and list what players were taken with those draft picks.

Posted by: tsbrul1 | June 23, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Why would that be helpful? The odds that one team would draft the same player as another team with that same pick are a long shot. Never ceases to amaze me how many people don't realize this.

Consider the Jamison trade from 2004. Wiz fans often talk about how we could have Devin Harris. No, we couldn't--or at least wouldn't. We already had a lot of money tied up in Arenas and Larry Hughes. We weren't going to use that pick on another point guard when our biggest need at the time was a big man. So listing what players were taken with those picks is absolutely irrelevant.

Posted by: Barno1 | June 23, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The indictment lies in the production that the Redskins received for those 18 picks that were traded away.

If McNabb and Brown give us the production we hope for, no one will complain. If they give us limited production -- a la Taylor, Lloyd, Archuleta and Duckett -- it merely adds to the Skins' history of front office incompetence.

Time will tell.

Posted by: Vertible | June 23, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

So listing what players were taken with those picks is absolutely irrelevant.

Posted by: Barno1
* * * * * * * * * * * *

While I agree that listing the players taken with those picks isn't entirely relevant, listing what players were AVAILABLE at those picks would be useful.

Using your Wizards example, yes the Wiz could have had Devin Harris with the pick they traded to get Jamison. Maybe the Wiz wouldn't have picked Harris because of who they already had on their roster.

But they also could have used the pick to draft Iguodala, Deng, Al Jefferson, David West, or Varejao. I'm not saying that's what they should have done, but it's worth considering that those were all ways they could have used the pick instead of trading it for Jamison.

Posted by: TheSecretWeapon | June 23, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

TheSecretWeapon, I'd still have done that trade...remember, a big part of that trade was dumping salaries and dropping locker room troublemakers Stackhouse and Laettner. Not to mention Jamison became a 2-time all star with the Wiz. How many did those players you mentioned go to COMBINED? I count 2. So, it was still a good trade for the Wiz in my opinion.

And while I understand wanting to know who were the best players available at the time we would've's still unfair to assume we would have drafted any of those players.

Posted by: Barno1 | June 23, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

The only relevant trades or bad trades among all listed are the Jason Taylor 2nd rounder which we almost had to do when both starting DE got hurt on day one of camp, and the 4 picks in 2006 for Duckett who we didnt even use once he got here, and Lloyd who used us to get rich. The rest of them either performed as well as the draft pick round we gave up, or were decent. The guys we got rid of e were lucky to get what we got for them. The Champ Bailey trade was a tragedy only because of the draft pick. We could have gotten a top flight RB in FA or in the draft without getting Portis, who has been very effective so not a total bust. But Champ was leaving and we had to get something for him before he did unless we used a franchise tag on him. The real problem with many of those trades and multiple average to poor FA signings is that we made them at 12:01 on FA day instead of waiting to see who got cut. We could have had Garcia instead Brunell for half the price a month later for instance. All in all this list is not too damning one way or the other.

Posted by: dbrine1261 | June 23, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

the reason that the Skins trade so much other then the fact that Dan Snyder has no football knowledge is that they change coaches so much, how else do you bring in the talent you need to run their offense or defensive scheme. I am by no means defending the way this team has been run. But with every new coach you gotta bring in your guys. 2 Pro Bowlers (McNabb and Brown) for a 2 and maybe a 3 or 4. That's not the kind of value trades Cerrato was making. they were tossing draft picks away. In the end, the reason for so many trades and FAs comes down to the constant change in coach and scheme. GO USA!

Posted by: Freddr055 | June 23, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

I know it's uncomfortable seeing the past trades going no where but remember- it was Cerrato who made them. This year we have a real GM for the first time in over 10 years. So, we'll see how it pans out. IMO, the trades done so far under B. Allen was ingenious. Except for maybe McNabb but Shanny wanted him and I'd have to agree because it's exactly what the Redskins needs- a leader who can draw the team together. It's looking up this year! :)

Posted by: RedCherokee | June 23, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't matter. Unless it's a no brainer pick, they're going to draft some future loser anyway.

Posted by: Scoonie97 | June 23, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Blech. The problem isn't really the traded picks, it's the garbage we got in return.

Posted by: Tank2 | June 23, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Why would anyone hate you pointing out a truth? It's not like you're trying to cast them in a negative light; the Danny has more than taken care of that for years to come. Hell, they could win back to back Superbowls and the Danny would still be the most hated owner in sports, particularly DC Sports. He's a prick and winning will never be attributed to him, it will only be IN SPITE OF HIM that winning occurs.

Posted by: kahlua87 | June 23, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Just go to Google and look up Redskins draft history. You will never see such a 70 year list of futility. When you consider what they do with draft picks, it doesn't matter one way or the other what they do with them. It's gonna be a blunder either way. They just don't know how to build thru the draft.

Posted by: lp_lodestar | June 23, 2010 6:17 PM | Report abuse

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