With only a few weeks until the 2022 NFL Draft, things are going to start heating up. Prospects are participating in pro days as they look to improve their draft stock, hoping to have their name called as early as possible.
Teams are finalizing draft boards and pinpointing which players they are going to target with their selections. In some instances, the player that a team may covet could be out of their range. That would necessitate a trade being made, which we see plenty of each year.
There is a lot that goes into executing a trade on draft day. Finding a team that is willing to trade back is normally the toughest task as those teams are looking to land the best players available as well. You need to sometimes blow teams away with a trade offer to get their attention.
Who could we see trying to move up the draft board this year? Here are three teams that should look into trading up in the 2022 NFL Draft.
The Cincinnati Bengals had a magical run through this year’s postseason. They hosted a home game during Wild Card Weekend, defeating the Las Vegas Raiders. After that, they went on the road and defeated the No. 1 seed Tennessee Titans and No. 2 seed Kansas City Chiefs before losing to the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl.
If the Bengals want to sustain that level of success and push for another Super Bowl appearance, they have to fix the offensive line. Joe Burrow has been battered through two seasons, absorbing hundreds of hits behind a poor unit.
Improving in the trenches is imperative. The front office has to do everything it can to ensure Burrow stays upright and they should be willing to pay any price. While trading up into the top-five for someone such as Evan Neal or Ikem Ekwonu isn’t likely realistic, moving up into the late teens or early 20s is certainly attainable.
There they can target someone such as Tyler Linderbaum, Zion Johnson, Trevor Penning or Kenyon Green in the NFL Draft to bolster an offensive line that has been amongst the worst in the league the last few seasons.
Los Angeles Chargers
There may not be a team in the NFL that added as much talent as the Los Angeles Chargers this offseason. Not only did they retain wide receiver Mike Williams, but they traded for pass-rushing extraordinaire Khalil Mack and signed one of the best players in this year’s free-agent class in J.C. Jackson.
The AFC West was in an arms race this offseason and the Chargers certainly didn’t miss out. They are a trendy Super Bowl selection right now as the team is loaded on both sides of the ball. Knowing the time is now to maximize the roster, as Justin Herbert will be on his rookie deal for three more seasons, it is time to make a big splash in the draft.
Los Angeles should be motivated to move up as high as they can to land as high-upside of a prospect as possible. After seeing what happened with Burrow and the Bengals, the Chargers need to be aggressive and find a long-term answer at right tackle.
Trading up into the top-10 of the 2022 NFL Draft to land one of the top prospects, such as Charles Cross, would put the finishing touches on a roster ready to contend.