The Seahawks, Cardinals, and Broncos are among the teams internally considering an offensive line acquisition, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com, and those clubs are having conversations regarding what they would sacrifice in a trade. The Giants are also interested in making an offensive line deal, per La Canfora, confirming a report earlier today that indicated New York is evaluating the Browns’ Joe Thomas.
Thomas is of interest to Seattle, Arizona, and Denver, as well, but so is 49ers offensive tackle Joe Staley, who is thought to be on the trade block. However, both Cleveland and San Francisco have placed high price tags on their respective tackles, and it’s unlikely that any of the interested clubs will be able to meet the cost, reports La Canfora. Both the Browns and 49ers have downplayed the idea that they’re looking to sell at the deadline, but that could be part of a strategy to drive up the price of their assets.
The Seahawks, of course, have fielded one of the more porous offensive lines for several years, and haven’t seemed interested in making a serious investment along their front five. The offensive line issues have become even more obvious with quarterback Russell Wilson playing through injuries, meaning he can’t move about the pocket with his usual prowess. Seattle also ranks 28th in adjusted line yards, Football Outsiders‘ run-blocking metric, and is now starting George Fant — a rookie undrafted free agent who hasn’t made a start since Pee Wee football — at left tackle.
The Cardinals’ offensive line troubles, meanwhile, have been on the interior, where the club has lost guard Evan Mathis for the season and center A.Q. Shipley hasn’t played well. But an acquisition of Thomas or Staley would clearly offer an upgrade, and would allow Arizona to move former first-round pick D.J. Humphries back to the bench. In such a scenario, either current left tackle Jared Veldheer or the Cards’ presumed addition would shift to the right side.
Like Arizona, most of Denver’s line problems have come on the inside, meaning the Broncos would need to shuffle their line in the event of a tackle trade. If Denver picked up Thomas or Staley, incumbent left tackle Russell Okung would probably move to the right side, allowing Donald Stephenson to switch from right tackle to guard.