Denver Broncos trades: Sheldon Richardson should be targeted

If the Denver Broncos are going to make a trade before the trade deadline, one move that would make some sense is getting Jets DL Sheldon Richardson…

There’s been a lot of talk about what the Denver Broncos might do at the trade deadline in recent days, especially after losing two games.

When you lose in the NFL, weaknesses are exposed and everyone has a great idea for a quick fix.

There are ideas floating around out there I absolutely love, including the Broncos attempting to make a blockbuster move again and trying to trade for Cleveland Browns offensive tackle Joe Thomas. I’ve already outlined why there are really no negatives to making that move.

The fact of the matter is, the Broncos have been getting beat in the trenches on both sides of the ball. Not only are they struggling to run block and protect, they are struggling on the other side of the ball against the run.

Their struggles against the run have led to the team allowing over 112 yards per game in the first six games of the season.

Jacob Weindling wrote a post on five players that could help the Broncos at the trade deadline, and one name included in the post intrigued me above the rest. The idea was a trade for New York Jets defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson, and it’s a move that I think could elevate the Broncos’ defense to the level it was at last season both against the run and pass.

Richardson, though at times troubled off the field, is an absolute beast for the Jets on the interior of their defense. They just re-signed Muhammad Wilkerson to a big multi-year contract and they have a budding superstar in Leonard Williams. Richardson is obviously an awesome asset to have for any team, including the Jets, but he would fill a pretty big void for the Denver Broncos opposite Derek Wolfe.

Richardson is on a very reasonable contract this season, and has the fifth year team option as a former first round pick next year (just over $8 million) so he is team-controlled through the 2017 season. The Broncos lost Malik Jackson this past offseason and there’s a chance they could lose Sylvester Williams after this year, leaving just Derek Wolfe from their vaunted Super Bowl defensive line.

Of course, the team has made some moves at the DE position to get better, like adding Jared Crick and drafting Adam Gotsis, but the loss of Vance Walker hurt this team more than anyone has really acknowledged this season.

I don’t really know what price the Jets would be asking for in a Richardson trade, but there’s no doubt that he could be a huge help to the Denver Broncos both against the run and as an interior pass rusher. He’s one of the most athletic defensive linemen in the league, and the thought of adding him on the opposite side of Derek Wolfe would be absolutely ridiculous.

The New England Patriots made a trade earlier this year, giving up Chandler Jones and receiving a second round pick and Jonathan Cooper (who has since been released) in return. I don’t think the Jets — especially at this point in the season — could expect much more than a second round pick and a role player or potential starter for Richardson.

The Broncos have great depth at certain positions, and could be willing to move a player and a pick to get someone like Richardson that could elevate the level of this team significantly. Perhaps they could work in a future selection based on Richardson’s games played, performance, or if he is willing to re-sign with the Broncos at some point.

Who knows?

This is a deal I would look into making over the next couple of weeks.