So you’ve conceived the perfect draft-night trade that’s going to change the franchise forever. All you have to do, you say, is offer an extra second, maybe a third-round pick, and you’ll be able to trade up to take the next face of the team.
Wait, before you throw yourself a ticker tape parade, remember, it’s not quite that simple. This isn’t Madden franchise mode on your Playstation. It takes two to tango.
There’s a lot that goes into an NFL trade, especially one that involves draft picks that are going to be used immediately that weekend. So before a personnel staff picks up the phone, it has likely created contingency plan after contingency plan in case the deal falls apart or a coveted player surprisingly comes off the board before initially expected.
Dolphins General Manager Jeff Ireland recently joined The Finsiders to describe the process of completing a draft-day trade.
The speculation may ramp up weeks or months before, but trade talks of any substance don’t begin until a couple of days before the draft, Ireland said.
“By then, you have a pretty good idea of how things are going to fall. So I’ll make some calls. (Assistant GM) Brian Gaine and I will call around, just say, ‘Hey, look, if you’re looking to move up, give us a call. If you’re looking to move back, give us a call. We’re looking to do this. We’re looking to do that.’”
With the rookie wage scale drastically altered by the league’s most recent Collective Bargaining Agreement, trading up has become more desirable, if only because the financial risk to do so is much smaller. Likewise, though, teams at the top may be more hesitant to part with their pick. This factors in, of course, along with plenty of uncertainty, to create a volatile negotiation process.
So, if you know want move up to grab your guy, can you hammer out a deal before the first pick walks across the stage?
Only once since arriving in Miami, Ireland said, has he actually agreed to the framework of a deal before the draft actually began.
“But obviously it was contingent on the player being there – their player being there – and then he was, so we made the deal.”
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