Three years ago, the Seahawks were on top of the football world. They had just won their first championship, beating Denver 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII and had emerging stars that would become household names across the world.
Richard Sherman, who was infamously interviewed after Seattle’s 23-17 win over San Francisco in the NFC Championship by FoxSport’s Erin Andrews weeks before, consumed most of the water cooler talk as the big game approached.
Russell Wilson was still trying to gain respect as a top quarterback in the league.
Marshawn Lynch had not yet started his media embargo, but his #Beastmode nickname was starting to take off.
It was hard for even the fairest weathered fans to imagine that any superstar member of that Seahawks squad – the victors at MetLife Stadium on the biggest football stage of the year – would be traded just three seasons later.
But that’s exactly what will likely happen to Richard Sherman.
Sherman, the leader of the “Legion of Boom,” the four-time Pro Bowler, three-time All-Pro, and 2014 NFC Defensive Player of the Year, is on the trading block.
The Seahawks are demanding a king’s ransom for Sherman who is considered one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL. Whether they get it or not remains to be seen.
But Sherman isn’t the only star on the trading block. Check out the other nine players who round out the list of the biggest names in the league who will likely be finding a new home when the regular season rolls around.
Jimmy Garoppolo, QB
Tom Brady’s backup played sufficiently enough in the future Hall of Famer’s absence to garner a couple of wins in his two starts, but just short of halftime in Week 2, Miami Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso forcefully drove Garoppolo into the ground, spraining the AC joint in his right throwing shoulder as a result. New England has said they have no interest in trading the No. 2 guy – especially as Brady approaches his 40th birthday – but if a team that needs a QB wants him and is willing to pay, the Patriots would much rather get compensation for the fourth-year signal caller than lose him in free agency for nothing in 2018.
Kirk Cousins, QB
The Redskins are fledgling after abruptly firing their GM and losing its top-2 receivers (Desean Jackson and Pierre Garcon) last month and Cousins is the best thing they have going for them on offense. For some reason, they don’t want to give him a long-term extension for some reason that he so desperately wants and deserves from Washington. Former Skins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is now the head coach of the 49ers, possibly the most quarterback-needy team in the NFL, so it’s worth a thought that San Francisco would at least put in an offer.
Brock Osweiler, QB
Osweiler was already traded once this offseason to Cleveland after the Texans felt comfortable moving forward with Tom Savage under center, but who’s to say the Browns don’t trade him on draft night? Cleveland owns the No. 12 overall pick which would give them a long-term solution at QB. Osweiler still shows promise, but at this point, he isn’t as attractive as the likes of Garoppolo or Cousins, who the Browns may be eyeing.
Trumaine Johnson, CB
Hands down, Richard Sherman is the best current player on this list and especially out of all the possible CBs that could be up for a trade this offseason (No one really thinks Washington will trade Josh Norman away, do they?) which will hurt the Los Angeles Rams in finding a trade partner for Trumaine Johnson. The Rams have franchised Johnson two years in a row, which means he’ll take home $16.742 million this year, which is more than any other corner except Norman. The Rams are paying him “best CB in the league” money, even though he isn’t. Johnson actually has the leverage and doesn’t seem to mind the franchise tag, but Los Angeles needs to come up with a long-term deal by July 15th or make an attempt at trading Johnson. Sherman isn’t doing anyone, other than Johnson’s bank account, any favors.
Malcolm Butler, CB
A few short weeks ago, the “definite” trade that was going down was Butler to the Saints. Now, all of the chatter has gotten quiet in New Orleans, which doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t happen, but something is keeping this deal from getting done. The Patriots could very well force him to play on his one-year, $3.91 million restricted free-agent tender, but if they do, New England will lose him without getting anything in return as an unrestricted free agent in 2018.