The Oakland Raiders need another receiver, and the Arizona Cardinals are looking to rebuild. This offseason, both teams can help the other. According to Ian Wharton of Bleacher Report, the Raiders could send draft picks to the Cardinals for Larry Fitzgerald. What a move like this does is give the Raiders another weapon they desperately need and gives the Cardinals options in the 2018 NFL Draft.
Wharton says that since the Cardinals missed out on Kirk Cousins and are basically strapped for cash, trading away Fitzgerald would remedy one of their problems. Moving Fitzgerald will shed $16.9 million off their cap and all they will take back are picks.
Last season, Fitzgerald caught 104 passes for 1,156 yards and six touchdowns and did so at the age of 34. With the Raiders having already signed Jordy Nelson after letting Michael Crabtree go, the Raiders seem invested in veteran players to pair with Amari Cooper and Derek Carr. The big issue that Wharton sees is if Fitzgerald would want to leave Arizona.
Fitzgerald has played his entire career with the Cardinals and would like to retire doing so. However, with the current state of the team and with the emergence of the Los Angeles Rams and San Francisco 49ers, it could be a while before the Cardinals get back atop the NFC West unless they make a move to get some youth on the team.
Wharton believes a deal can be done if the Raiders were to offer to swap this year’s picks, plus give the Cardinals a fourth and sixth-round pick to sweeten the deal. While losing Fitzgerald would be a huge blow to the Cardinals, they will have a legit chance to rebuild through the draft. By swapping picks, it will take the Cardinals from the 15th pick to the 10th, thus resulting in them having a better chance to grab one of the top QBs in this year’s draft.
In order for this trade to work for the Raiders, they will need to ask Fitzgerald to take a pay cut or ask one of their veteran players to restructure their contract in order for Fitzgerald’s $16.9 million to fit. Jon Gruden loves veteran leadership and there may not be anyone better in the NFL than Fitzgerald. He could end up being a perfect mentor to Cooper, while helping with adding stability to their receiving corps.