How NFL’s Week 6 could impact Washington’s trade deadline strategy

How Week 6 could impact Washington's trade deadline strategy originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

The 2020 NFL trade deadline is Nov. 3, which means teams have just two more weekends of game action to evaluate what they have, what others have and what strategy they want to employ leading up to that key date.

Washington will certainly be a franchise to monitor. 

The most-talked about piece that they could part with is Dwayne Haskins, their ex-starter who’s currently relegated to third on the depth chart. As long as that’s the case, he won’t dress for kickoff. 

Haskins isn’t the only player the club may move, however.

Last year, Ryan Kerrigan’s name was attached to some trade rumors, and it wouldn’t be a shock to hear that again this season. With Chase Young and Montez Sweat manning the edges for a majority of the time on Jack Del Rio’s defense, Kerrigan has posted snap counts in the 20s in four of the team’s five contests thus far. He also hasn’t made much of an impact since the opener.

For the Burgundy and Gold, he’s more of a luxury right now. For someone else, meanwhile, he could be a difference maker.

Ryan Anderson, too, finds himself in a similar situation. He’s actually seeing even fewer snaps on defense than Kerrigan, and he’s someone who’s previously been mentioned as a potential trade chip. He doesn’t have nearly the decorated career that Kerrigan has, but he did show out in an expanded role near the end of 2019. Someone else may like to give him a shot to do so in their system.

That’s why Week 6 is crucial to pay attention to for those who care about the organization, and not just because Washington is heading up to New York for a meeting with the Giants.

Should some team’s quarterback go down, Haskins — who was a first-round choice just about 18 months ago — could become more attractive. He wouldn’t even necessarily have to be acquired and plugged into a starting role, either; if a backup has to slide into a lineup elsewhere, Haskins would represent a more talented option over most of the other, if not all of the other, third-stringers in the sport.

As for Kerrigan and Anderson, plenty of contenders are struggling to find a pass rush. Strong teams like Seattle, Tennessee, New England and Buffalo are all in the NFL’s bottom-half when it comes to sacks. If they go another game without finding a solution to that problem, Washington’s pair of ends may become their ideal solution.

Now, as a counter to all of that, Washington somehow remains in the NFC East hunt. Because Haskins doesn’t seem to be in their long-term plans, a win versus the Giants likely wouldn’t change their stance about sending him away, if that’s really want they want to do. Kerrigan and Anderson, on the other hand, may be guys that Ron Rivera wants to keep around for the rest of the schedule. 

A loss at MetLife Stadium, though, would drop Washington’s record to 1-5. That could push them into more of a seller’s mindset. How Week 6 unfolds for the rest of the league could do so as well. 

The NFL’s trade deadline used to be dull. That is no longer true. Let’s see if Washington contributes to the craziness at all this time around.

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