The Packers may have been trying to pry wide receiver Will Fuller from the Texans in advance of the trade deadline, and they were also looking to bolster their defense. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter), Green Bay offered a mid-round pick to the Giants in exchange for defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson.
New York, though, declined the offer, even though Tomlinson is playing out the final year of his rookie contract and despite the fact that the two sides have not made much progress in contract talks. As Dan Duggan of The Athletic observes, head coach Joe Judge did not want to trade “foundational pieces,” and he clearly sees Tomlinson as a key part of the team’s future (Twitter link). Duggan says the club also rejected overtures for tight end Evan Engram, and Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports that Big Blue was not going to deal Engram for anything less than a first-round pick.
The decision to keep Tomlinson makes plenty of sense. The Giants selected him in the second round of the 2017 draft, and unless they were convinced they would be unable to re-sign him, dealing a young, talented interior defender for a mid-round selection wouldn’t necessarily have aided in the club’s rebuilding process.
You can’t fault Green Bay for making a play for Tomlinson, though. The Packers are gearing up for a playoff push, but their run defense is among the worst in the NFL, and the 26-year-old Alabama product would have gone a long way towards solidifying their defensive front. Pro Football Focus currently ranks Tomlinson as the 14th-best interior defender in the league, and though he has just one sack this year, his pass rushing grade is almost as high as his run defense score.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.