I’ve been clear on the thinking in the Adrian Peterson potential trade saga. The Jacksonville Jaguars can afford to acquire him but shouldn’t.
The fact that the Jaguars underplayed for DeMarco Murray, the 2014 NFL rushing champion, is a strong indicator that the team wouldn’t want to shell out too much to acquire a 30-year old running back, even one as good as Peterson.
My primary objection to the Jaguars acquiring Peterson is the trade compensation. He’s a high quality player but he simply is not worth trading away the third overall pick for. The Jags would be getting a running back on the tail end of his career and missing out on a top-flight talent who can help the team for a decade. Someone like Leonard Williams, perhaps.
But what if it wasn’t a first round pick?
It’s popular to consider the Jaguars drafting a running back in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft. There should be a number of great talents available at the top of the second round for the Jaguars to pursue if they do want to bolster the running back stable.
I just read a piece on the Jaguars pursuing Adrian Peterson (go ahead and give the whole article a read) and it got me thinking about using that second round pick as a potential trading piece for Peterson. In fact, I think writer Brian Ronan makes a compelling argument that the team could offer a second rounder and that could be enough. In his words:
"A second rounder makes a lot of sense however. The pitch would be an easy one for Caldwell to Minnesota. The Vikings would get the fourth pick in the second round. A running back hasn’t been taken in the first round since 2012, which means that the Vikings would still have their pick of almost any running back in the draft."
While the Vikings will likely miss out on Todd Gurley and Melvin Gordon, they would be able to pick up any other running back they desired. They would also be able to use their other second round pick as possible leverage to move up and get Gurley or Gordon if they so desired.
Of course, this is a bit of optimism from the Jaguars side (assuming the team wants him).
Adrian Peterson is a bonafide superstar. He wants to win a championship. He wants to find success. He knows he only has a few years left of quality running. He doesn’t want to spend those years on a team still struggling to right the mistakes of the previous general manager.
Further, the Minnesota Vikings haven’t said they are willing to trade Peterson. To me, that sounds genuine. Head coach Mike Zimmer expects Peterson to fulfill the final three years of his contract. Why trade away a generational talent like Peterson to draft another guy who, frankly, isn’t going to be like him?
I’m all for exploring possibilities and the potential for a second round pick in exchange for Peterson is the best thought I’ve read on the subject of trading for the stud running back. Is it enough to convince me? I’m not really sure. The Jaguars are still in massive overhaul mode and shipping off a pick is tough to think of, even if it isn’t a first rounder. The Jags could use that to do pretty much whatever they wanted. And if Todd McShay and Mel Kiper are right, then the Jaguars will come away with a ridiculously impressive haul with that second round pick including landing an offensive playmaker in round one (wide receiver Amari Cooper) and a pass rushing specialist (defensive end/outside linebacker Vic Beasley) in round two.
What do you guys think? Is a second rounder enough to entice the Vikings? If so, is it worth it?
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