The Dolphins need to part with Tua Tagovailoa to pry Deshaun Watson away from the Texans, but that’s only the beginning of this complicated trade.
The NFL rumor mill is buzzing with the news that Deshaun Watson is willing to waive his no-trade clause to move to the Miami Dolphins.
Tua Tagovailoa is the big-name rumored to be headed to Houston in the deal, but the Texans need to ask for a lot more value if they’re going to let the face of their franchise leave.
The first thing the Texans need to demand is the No. 3 pick in this year’s draft. Ironically, that selection was originally Houston’s property before they moved it to Miami in a previous trade. Correcting the previous regime’s mistake should be priority No. 1 for Houston.
Predictably, the Dolphins will try to sell the idea that Tagovailoa is the sort of premier asset that should take the No. 3 pick off the table. The Texans should call Miami’s bluff. They should prioritize the premium draft pick over a quarterback that faces a lot of question marks heading into the 2021 season.
Deshaun Watson is unhappy with the Texans' handling of their hiring process & the state of the franchise, sources told @mortreport.
Informed speculation is that Watson would consider waiving his no-trade clause to join the Dolphins in a swap for Tua Tagovailoa, a source said. pic.twitter.com/rqZ45NHBov
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 10, 2021
NFL Rumors: How would a Deshaun Watson trade work?
It seems that the Dolphins have really soured on Tua’s long-term prospects after his late-season swoon. That makes this their best opportunity to extract meaningful value from him in a trade.
Ultimately, expect Miami to capitulate and include both Tagovailoa and the No. 3 pick in the deal.
The real question to ask is whether or not those two premium assets will be enough to get a deal done. Conventional wisdom says no. Previous deals for legitimate Pro Bowl quarterbacks have netted teams multiple future first round picks. The flip side to that argument is that they rarely net teams selections that land in the top-5. That changes the value calculation considerably for Miami.
Even so, the Texans should push for one more future first to be part of the deal. It may be in the best interest of both franchises to make it a 2022 selection. The Texans want to realize the pick as soon as possible and the Dolphins should feel good about their chances of posting a strong regular season record in 2021. That would, of course, push the placement of their potential first rounder down the draft board.
It’s noteworthy that this framework would still permit Miami to keep their own first round pick in 2021. That would represent a major coup for the Dolphins’ front office.
In the end, a deal that sends the Texans Tua Tagovailoa, the No. 3 pick in the 2021 draft and 2022 first rounder in exchange for Deshaun Watson feels like fair value. Houston might push Miami for more if and when the negotiations begin, but they don’t have a ton of leverage if Watson is ready to demand a trade. Making this kind of deal could represent a way for everyone involved to save face.