The market for cornerbacks has dried up quickly, leaving the New York Jets in a difficult position. Do they wait for the draft or go for a trade?
Morris Claiborne – Dallas Cowboys
Part of trading in the NFL is trying to balance price, age and upside to gain maximum value. That often takes somewhat of a leap of faith by the pursuing team. However, they could find tremendous potential in a deal with the Dallas Cowboys for Morris Claiborne. The former #6 overall pick out of LSU has struggled in his first two seasons. He has just two interceptions in that time span and missed six games last year due to injuries. Cowboy fans are already calling him a bust but at age 24 it’s somewhat premature to make that statement. Claiborne is still a tremendous athlete who was a menace for the Tigers in college. Perhaps under the right coach he can realize that awesome potential, and with Dallas working a system that doesn’t quite fit his talents, it could make sense for the two sides to work a deal.
Chris Houston – Detroit Lions
A good percentage of experts believe the Detroit Lions are going to take a corner in the NFL draft, probably in the first round. That might put current starter Chris Houston in a compromising position. During his first three seasons he became their most reliable cornerback but 2013 proved a difficult one for him as he struggled at times in coverage and missed four games as well. Confidence is high that he will rebound but with a new coaching staff in place there is really no clear picture on where he stands. The New York Jets have been able to coach up veterans before and Houston is still only 29-years old. Provided he stays healthy he has a chance to become one of the more underrated defensive backs in football.
Byron Maxwell – Seattle Seahawks
There are some very important keys to remember in regards to Byron Maxwell. He had four interceptions last year and he’s 26-years old. His value is peaking and there is little reason to think the Seattle Seahawks would just let him go. However, it’s also important to remember that both he and teammate Richard Sherman are free agents in 2015. Seattle is already strapped for cash and will have to save their money for Sherman and Russell Wilson as well in the next couple years. That means it’s likely Maxwell could hit the open market next year, unless they can find some trade interest for him. The New York Jets would be foolish not to explore it. He’s a long 6’1″ cover man who plays physical and is an ideal fit for a 3-4 press defense. Given how good the Seahawks are at developing corners, this is a trade they can afford to make and one that would prove hugely beneficial for the Jets.