This trade makes a lot of sense for Broncos

Denver Broncos 2021 offseason, Eric Kendricks. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos 2021 offseason, Eric Kendricks. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

Should the Denver Broncos consider making a trade for a star inside linebacker?

The Broncos seem to have a plan at inside linebacker going into the 2022 season and it does not include many of the players some fans thought it would.

The team re-signed Josey Jewell but chose not to bring back either Kenny Young or Alexander Johnson. The decision was also made to pass up on Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean in the draft.

As of now, the starting inside linebackers appear to be Jewell and either Alex Singleton or Jonas Griffith, with Baron Browning possibly moving to the outside. More on Browning later.

Because of this, Ian Wharton of Bleacher Report has an idea. While listing trades that each team should make before training camp begins, he suggests that the Broncos should acquire Eric Kendricks of the Minnesota Vikings.

Here is how that trade would look:

This move makes sense for a couple of reasons.

While on the outside it appears that dealing such a high draft pick in exchange for a 30-year-old player seems to be a bit much, Kendricks could also be a terrific fit in Denver.

General manager George Paton is also quite familiar with Kendricks from his days in Minnesota and Paton has not been afraid to look to players from his old stomping grounds to improve the Denver roster, so a trade like this is not out of the question.

What would Eric Kendricks bring to the Broncos?

Kendricks was a second-round pick in 2015 and has played at a high level in each of his seven seasons in the league. In addition to being quite durable, he does everything well.

Kendricks has 782 career tackles and 14 sacks. But what sets him apart is his ability to drop back into coverage and that is an area where the Broncos have needed to get better for some time now.

He has nine career interceptions, bringing two of those back for touchdowns and 45 pass deflections in his career.

A second-round pick would be a lot to give up but the move would make sense as Kendricks likely still has several years of above-average play left in him.

The Vikings could also have some interest in this deal for a couple of reasons. For one, they would save $9.4 million in cap space. They have also used high draft picks on the inside linebacker position in recent years, selected Troy Dye in the fourth round in 2020, Patrick Jones II in the third round in 2021, and  Brian Asamoah in the third round of the most recent draft.

While that trade makes some sense, Broncos fans are likely not thrilled with another deal offered by Wharton in the same article. Here is how that trade would look.

This move doesn’t seem like one the Broncos would make, giving up on Browning after his rookie season. Wharton suggests that Browning doesn’t fit Ejiro Evero’s defensive scheme but if he can blow up as an outside pass-rusher, he could be a huge piece of the team’s future.

Next. Two teams chosen to have better odds than Broncos to end slide. dark

However, if a trade for Kendricks was made in which a second-round pick was given up, the team could get an extra third-rounder back under this idea.