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2022 NFL Trade Deadline: 9 defensive players who could be moved

Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Broncos linebacker Bradley Chubb (55) gestures after a play in the second quarter against the Indianapolis Colts at Empower Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

• Buyers at edge defender: A handful of contenders should explore the veteran market at the position.

• Buyers at cornerback: The Cincinnati Bengals and Minnesota Vikings would be wise to add at cornerback.

• Patriots could find interior boost: New England adding reinforcements to its interior defensive line could go a long way.

Estimated Reading Time: 11 mins

We broke down hypothetical trade markets for 10 offensive players that could get moved before the NFL’s Nov. 1 deadline last week, and now we shift our attention to the defensive side of the ball. 

Denver Broncos EDGE Bradley ChubbLos Angeles Rams for 2023 3rd, 2023 6th, 2024 4th

Chubb is playing the 2022 season on a $12.716 million fifth-year option after dealing with injuries throughout the course of his rookie contract, but he has been very solid in his contract year. The No. 5 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft sports an 81.8 overall grade, and his 23 quarterback pressures is a top-20 mark among edge defenders. However, selling high and moving him now makes way too much sense given Denver’s 2-5 record and depth on the edge.

Just like last season when the Los Angeles Rams traded for Denver Broncos edge defender Von Miller at the deadline, they’d need Denver to convert some of Chubb’s remaining 2022 salary to facilitate a move. Chubb is owed about $7 million for the remainder of the season,

Denver signed free agent edge defender Randy Gregory to a five-year, $70 million contract this past offseason, and he was dominant before he landed on injured reserve following an arthroscopic knee scope. 2021 third-round pick Baron Browning has converted from off-ball linebacker to more of a standup edge rusher and has displayed a little Micah Parsons to his game, as well.

Despite Chubb’s strong play in 2022, his 14.8% pass-rush win rate and 12.6% pressure percentage trail Gregory and Browning by a decent margin, and Denver used its second-round pick this past draft on edge defender Nik Bonitto. The Broncos likely can’t afford to dish out another big contract on defense, especially considering they have one of the worst offenses in NFL history through Week 7.

Rams edge defenders are currently a distant dead last in pass-rush win rate (13.2%) and pressure rate (7.1%). Playing alongside Aaron Donald also presents a great opportunity for Chubb to boost his stock before hitting the free agent market. 

Chicago Bears EDGE Robert QuinnKansas City Chiefs for 2023 4th, 2023 7th

Quinn set a Chicago Bears franchise record in 2021 — a franchise known for its ferocious defenses over the years — with 18.5 sacks on the season. So far in 2022, however, Quinn has just one sack and a sub-10% pressure rate.

Kansas City will need Chicago to convert the majority of Quinn’s remaining 2022 salary into a bonus, which will lead to a boost in the return compensation as a result. The obvious connection here is Bears general manager Ryan Poles helping his former organization in the Chiefs mount another Super Bowl run.


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