The Carolina cut long time franchise WR Steve Smith and lost WR Ted Ginn Jr to the Cardinals in free agency on the same day. Brandon LaFell is also a free agent and is reportedly drawing interest from several teams. With these losses and only an estimated 4.49 million in available cap space entering the 2014 season, they are sure to be interested in drafting a wide receiver.
The market is getting thin and they are in a tough situation with regard to free agency. There have been no reports of the Panthers being interested in any of the remaining free agents.
The 2014 draft is still 2 months away, but it is never too early to start pondering trade scenarios. The Raiders are looking to build through the draft and bridge gaps with free agents. Their signings thus far are evidence of this.
Trading down to get more picks is the best scenario for a team like the Raiders looking to rebuild through the draft. If WR Sammy Watkins falls to the 5th pick, the Panthers may be willing to trade up to get him. How would it benefit the Raiders to trade with them?
Take a look at the commonly used Draft Trade Value Chart for the answer:
|Rd 1||V||Rd 2||V||Rd 3||V||Rd 4||V||Rd 5||V||Rd 6||V||Rd 7||V|
|1 HOU||3000||33 HOU||580||65 HOU||265||97 HOU||112||129 HOU||43||161 HOU||27||193 HOU||14|
|2 STL||2600||34 WSH||560||66 WSH||260||98 WSH||108||130 WSH||42||162 WSH||27||194 WSH||14|
|3 JAX||2200||35 CLE||550||67 OAK||255||99 ATL||104||131 TB||41||163 JAX||26||195 CLE||13|
|4 CLE||1800||36 OAK||540||68 ATL||250||100 TB||100||132 JAX||40||164 CLE||26||196 OAK||13|
|5 OAK||1700||37 ATL||530||69 NYJ||245||101 JAX||96||133 CLE||40||165 OAK||25||197 ATL||13|
|6 ATL||1600||38 TB||520||70 JAX||240||102 CLE||92||134 SEA||39||166 ATL||25||198 TB||12|
|7 TB||1500||39 JAX||510||71 CLE||235||103 OAK||88||135 ATL||39||167 CHI||25||199 JAX||12|
|8 MIN||1400||40 MIN||500||72 MIN||230||104 MIN||86||136 MIN||38||168 MIN||24||200 MIN||11|
|9 BUF||1350||41 BUF||490||73 BUF||225||105 BUF||84||137 BUF||38||169 BUF||24||201 BUF||11|
|10 DET||1300||42 TEN||480||74 NYG||220||106 STL||82||138 JAX||37||170 TEN||23||202 CAR||11|
|11 TEN||1250||43 NYG||470||75 STL||215||107 DET||80||139 TEN||37||171 NYG||23||203 STL||10|
|12 NYG||1200||44 STL||460||76 DET||210||108 TEN||78||140 NYG||36||172 STL||23||204 DET||9.8|
|13 STL||1150||45 DET||450||77 SF||205||109 NYG||76||141 STL||36||173 DET||22||205 TEN||9.4|
|14 CHI||1100||46 PIT||440||78 DAL||200||110 JAX||74||142 NYJ||35||174 MIA||22||206 DAL||9|
|15 PIT||1050||47 DAL||430||79 BAL||195||111 NYJ||72||143 MIA||35||175 CHI||21||207 PIT||8.6|
|16 DAL||1000||48 BAL||420||80 NYJ||190||112 MIA||70||144 CHI||34||176 PIT||21||208 DAL||8.2|
|17 BAL||950||49 NYJ||410||81 MIA||185||113 CHI||68||145 PIT||34||177 KC||21||209 IND||7.8|
|18 NYJ||900||50 MIA||400||82 CHI||180||114 PIT||66||146 DAL||33||178 BAL||20||210 NYJ||7.4|
|19 MIA||875||51 CHI||390||83 CLE||175||115 DAL||64||147 JAX||33||179 NYJ||20||211 MIA||7|
|20 ARI||850||52 ARI||380||84 ARI||170||116 ARI||62||148 ARI||32||180 ARI||19||212 OAK||6.6|
|21 GB||800||53 GB||370||85 B||165||117 GB||60||149 GB||32||181 GB||19||213 GB||6.2|
|22 PHI||780||54 PHI||360||86 PHI||160||118 PHI||58||150 PHI||31||182 NE||19||214 PHI||5.8|
|23 KC||760||55 CIN||350||87 KC||155||119 CIN||56||151 KC||31||183 CIN||18||215 DAL||5.4|
|24 CIN||740||56 SF||340||88 CIN||150||120 KC||54||152 CIN||31||184 KC||18||216 CIN||5|
|25 SD||720||57 SD||330||89 SD||145||121 SD||52||153 SD||30||185 SD||17||217 SD||4.6|
|26 CLE||700||58 NO||320||90 IND||140||122 NO||50||154 IND||30||186 NO||17||218 STL||4.2|
|27 NO||680||59 IND||310||91 NO||136||123 CLE||49||155 NO||29||187 IND||17||219 SF||3.8|
|28 CAR||660||60 CAR||300||92 CAR||132||124 CAR||48||156 CAR||29||188 CAR||16||220 SF||3.4|
|29 NE||640||61 SF||292||93 NE||128||125 SF||47||157 PHI||29||189 SF||16||221 NE||3|
|30 SF||620||62 NE||284||94 SF||124||126 NE||46||158 SF||28||190 NE||15||222 SF||2.6|
|31 DEN||600||63 DEN||276||95 DEN||120||127 DEN||45||159 DEN||28||191 DEN||15||223 DEN||2.3|
|32 SEA||590||64 SEA||270||9 MIN||116||128 SEA||44||160 SEA||27||192 SEA||15||224 SEA||2|
Each numbered pick carries a point value. General Managers use these values as a baseline when negotiating trades. The Raiders hold the 5th pick which is worth 1700 points and the Panthers hold the 28th pick which is only worth 660. This is a differential of 1040 points. This means that the Raiders should try and get picks from Carolina that total this number.
One example would be a second round pick in the next two drafts for 600 and a third round pick in the next two drafts for 264 for a total of 864. This leaves 176 points in favor of the Raiders which can be made up with later round picks or it can be left on the table to sweeten the deal.
There are many ways to break it down besides that scenario, but any way they work the trade, the Raiders would get the additional draft picks they want and the Panthers would get their star wide receiver. Of course, this depends on Sammy Watkins or any of the top wide receivers that may appeal to the Panthers at risk of being gone from the board when they get on the clock. It would also depend on whether or not the Panthers are willing to play ball.
Raider fans may remember the 2013 draft in which the Raiders traded the third pick to the Miami Dolphins for the 12th and 42nd picks. In this deal, the Raiders left 520 points on the table. They could have gotten another pick or two in the later rounds out of this trade. It would appear on paper that they got ripped off, but there were a couple of factors to consider. The draft last year was not one of the strongest and the Raiders were dealing from the disadvantage of having no second round pick.
That is not the case in this draft. Any team wanting to trade up will have to pony up more picks in a draft so rich in talent at most positions such as this one.
There are several prospects in the late first as well as the second rounds and beyond that will be the best player available and will fill any of the Raiders many needs with young players. When draft day comes and depending on how the rest of free agency goes, Raider fans should be hopeful and optimistic that GM Reggie McKenzie is open to trading down for more picks to build their team with. He has proven to be fairly good at finding gems in the later rounds of the draft. If he can trade down for more picks, he will get a few opportunities to do just that.