Four teams filled important needs just before the NFL trade deadline Tuesday, while a fifth reacted to their division rivals’ moves in what was a quieter day than expected.
Golden Tate and Demaryius Thomas are the biggest names on the move, with Tate shipping out to Philadelphia and Thomas landing in Houston, where he’ll face the Denver team who traded him this Sunday.
Green Bay traded fifth-year safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix and running back/receiver Ty Montgomery away. Clinton-Dix will line up for the Redskins this weekend while Montgomery puts on a Ravens uniform.
Finally, Jacksonville got a couple of draft picks from the Rams for Dexter Fowler.
Each of the trade deadline deals addressed immediate needs for the receiving teams.
Eagles find second wideout
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) October 30, 2018
Philadelphia has had all kinds of problems at wide receiver. Injuries ended Mike Wallace’s season and cost Alshon Jeffrey much of the first half.
Nelson Agholor’s production is down operating as the second option. Jordan Matthew’s signing did little to take defenses’ attention away from last year’s breakout slot receiver.
With Golden Tate, Carson Wentz has the best receiving second wide receiver option he’s ever had. There is no reason to think Tate’s production will slow down in Philadelphia.
Washington gets defensive
TRADE: The #Redskins have acquired Ha Ha Clinton Dix from the Packers.
— Washington Redskins (@Redskins) October 30, 2018
Philadelphia was not the only NFL East team to add a premier wide receiver. Earlier in the week, Dallas sent a first-round pick to Oakland to put Amari Cooper in a Cowboys uniform.
Jay Gruden couldn’t land a wide receiver to match his rivals, so he shored up his defensive backfield with Clinton-Dix.
Cornerbacks were hard to come by, but the Redskins now have the top two rated safeties in Clinton-Dix and DJ Swearinger, according to Pro Football Focus.
Houston fills their Fuller hole
The #Texans have acquired WR Demaryius Thomas from the Denver Broncos, pending a physical.
— Houston Texans (@HoustonTexans) October 30, 2018
Deshaun Watson and the Texans put up 42 points last week in the first sighting of last season’s prolific passing attack. But a season-ending injury to Will Fuller threatened another lull in the action.
Enter Demaryius Thomas, who isn’t as fast or reliable as he used to be, but still commands respect from defenders. He should take pressure off DeAndre Hopkins and provide a solid locker room presence among the young playoff contenders.
Rams get another edge
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) October 30, 2018
Sean McVay addressed the Rams’ ineffective pass rush by dealing for Dexter Fowler. Fowler has had trouble getting onto the field with Calais Campbell and Yannick Ngakoue playing ahead of him.
Now, he will start next to Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh in an arrangement Sean McVay hopes will make offenses stop double-teaming his inside rushers or allow Fowler to thrive in the pass rush.
Ravens improve their options
Welcome to Baltimore, @_WiFi_Ty_!
We have acquired RB Ty Montgomery from the Green Bay Packers for a future undisclosed draft pick. pic.twitter.com/CjC1K3fJr9
— Baltimore Ravens (@Ravens) October 30, 2018
Baltimore took advantage of a motivated seller, sending a 7th-round draft pick in 2020 to Green Bay for Ty Montgomery.
Montgomery will benefit from the change in scenery. The newest Raven saw limited duty and only averaged four yards per carry this season for the Packers. With Alex Collins (3.6) and Buck Allen (2.7) struggling, Montgomery should see more action in Baltimore.
Moves not made
Deals that were not made raised eyebrows, too. Quarterbacks and cornerbacks were in demand, but not one changed teams. Lessons from Philadelphia’s Super Bowl run prompted quarterback-rich teams to sit tight.
The anticipated fire sale in New York never took place as the Giants turned down all offers. Patrick Peterson is still a Cardinal and DeSean Jackson is still in Tampa Bay despite their trade demands.
After today, teams will look at in-house alternatives or practice squad players to fill any holes.