According to Brian Costello of the New York Post, the feeling around the NFL is that the most the Jets could realistically hope for in return for DE Sheldon Richardson is “about as much” as a fourth-round pick.
Richardson has reportedly been on the trading block dating back to last season. However, there hasn’t been a lot of reported interest in him since the offseason got underway last month.
Connor Hughes of NJ.com mentioned earlier in the week that if the Jets attempt to trade Richardson again this year, “odd are” that it will be during the upcoming draft.
This makes plenty of sense, seeing as the Jets wound want to obtain some more draft picks to continue their rebuild. Waiting until after the draft would only delay the process, so if they’re going to move him, you can expect trade talks to pick up over the next few weeks.
Although, Costello points out that a trade is much more complicated than a typical deal, given that any team willing to part with draft compensation for Richardson would most likely want to sign him to an extension, as he’s currently in the final year of his contract.
Beyond that, there are obvious concerns regarding his on and off-the-field behavior to go along with two suspensions.
The Jets could hold on to Richardson for one more year and possibly recoup a 2019 third-round compensatory pick, depending on the contract he signs as a free agent next year.
Richardson, 26, is a former first-round pick of the Jets back in 2013. He played out his the final year of his four-year, $10.054 million rookie contract but the Jets elected to pick up his fifth-year option last year, which means he’s under team control through the 2017 season and will make a bases salary of $8.069 million.
According to OverTheCap.com, trading Richardson would free up $8,069,000 of available cap space while creating no dead money.
In 2016, In 2016, Richardson appeared in 15 games for the Jets and recorded 62 tackles, 1.5 sacks, a forced fumble, two recoveries and two pass defenses. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 31 edge defender out of 109 qualifying players.
We’ll have more regarding a potential Richardson trade as the news is available.