The most landscape-altering move discussed in a slew of Marcus Mariota-procurement rumors involves Philip Rivers heading to the Titans.
But considering the price Washington had to pay the Rams to move up from No. 14 to No. 2 to select Robert Griffin in 2012 — three first-rounders and a second-round selection — ESPN’s Bill Polian argues that the Chargers‘ No. 17 pick and Rivers potentially being included in a trade isn’t enough to warrant the Titans moving out of the No. 2 spot.
“Why wouldn’t that be the benchmark?” Polian said to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune’s Mark Craig. “The price to move up to No. 2 would be pretty darn high, I would think.”
The counter-argument there is the 33-year-old Rivers’ five-time Pro Bowl status and potential productivity going forward replaces one, possibly two, of those selections in a deal. Although Jay Cutler was nearly seven years younger and far less proven, another recent comparable maneuver fetched the Broncos two first-rounders, low-end starter Kyle Orton and a third-round selection, with only an additional fifth-rounder to make that deal work for the Bears.
On to some additional news from around the league on Saturday night …
- In the same piece from Craig, Vikings GM Rick Spielman‘s penchant for trading back into the first round stems from the ability to retain the player on his first contract for five years instead of four due to the fifth-year option introduced in the 2011 CBA. Minnesota did this to acquire Harrison Smith in 2012 and Teddy Bridgewater in 2014 but may not be able to execute such a move this year with just seven total draft choices, writes Craig.
- Star-Tribune columnist Sid Hartman expects a positive resolution to the ongoing Adrian Peterson-Vikings standoff despite the Cowboys’ not-so-secret pursuit. With the running back potentially accelerating Bridgewater’s development by providing a high-quality complementary force, Hartman expects Zygi and Mark Wilf to “make every effort” to get Peterson back. This included assuring more guaranteed money comes to the player with the biggest contract in the league at his position.
- The Cowboys‘ acquisition of Greg Hardy will enable them to address other needs early in the draft, notes Rainer Sabin of the Dallas Morning News. While a forthcoming suspension remains in play for Hardy, Dallas’ 28th-best pass rush receives a big upgrade and as a result, the linebacker and running back needs can be addressed without a reach for a pass-rusher being necessary at No. 27.
- Josh Lambo is an unusual kicking prospect that will be available in post-draft free agency, writes Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Before kicking for three years at Texas A&M and breaking the Aggies’ field goal accuracy record, the 24-year-old Lambo resided in Major League Soccer’s FC Dallas organization for four years.