Anquan Boldin, Santonio Holmes and now Brandon Marshall have all been traded during the same offseason. Two to the AFC East, too.
Acknowledging there are variables at play, it’s arguable the three receivers have similar profiles (age, production and talent). So which team got the best value?
- The Steelers traded Holmes, 26, who is entering the final year of his contract and will be suspended the first four games of next season, in exchange for a 2010 fifth-round pick.
- The Cardinals dealt Boldin, 29, for third- and fourth-round picks in 2010. Boldin, who had one year left on his contract, signed a new four-year, $28 million contract that included a guaranteed $10 million.
- The Broncos traded Marshall, 26, for two second-round picks (in 2010 and 2011). Marshall, a restricted free agent, subsequently signed a four-year extension worth $47.5 million with the Dolphins.
I’ve been hard pressed to find anyone who doesn’t think Denver got good value in dealing Marshall, who was himself a fourth-round pick of the Broncos in 2006. The Broncos were also in a box of sorts with his situation. By all accounts, there was a fractured relationship between Marshall and coach Josh McDaniels. The team wasn’t going to sign him to a long-term deal and risked losing him for no compensation.
Reaching out to NFL Network insider Michael Lombardi, he called it a “great” deal by the Broncos, noting he prefers getting two second-round picks to a first. Jason La Canfora posted Wednesday that the Broncos salvaged the best of an untenable (nice use) situation. Bucky Brooks says that while the Dolphins will emerge as the winners, the Broncos had to trade Marshall, and the two picks will help address needs on both sides of the ball.