5 more Detroit Lions players who could be traded before the draft
1. RB D’Andre Swift
With Okudah gone, Swift easily moves to the top of the list of Lions who could be traded–before the draft, during the draft, etc.
Head coach Dan Campbell could not hide his frustration, or perhaps merely disappointment, when talking about Swift and the team’s plan to keep him healthy at the NFL Combine in March.
"We tried to do that last year. We tried to take care of him in camp….We thought we had a recipe going into the year, and it didn’t work out,… We’re going to start all over from scratch again. Let’s find another way to see if we can help him stay on the field, you know? I already know he’s doing that for himself, so we’ve got to do that on our end. What can we do better by him? Can we? Because he’s too talented. He’s too talented to not have out there. He’s an explosive athlete.”"
Swift is entering the final year of his rookie contract, and the Lions are not going to sign him to an extension this offseason. Barring an unforeseen complete breakout in 2023, rooted in playing every game and David Montgomery missing time, Swift will be gone as a free agent next March if he remains a Lion through the entire season.
The question is what the realistic trade return would be for Swift, weighed against just keeping him one more season. Woodward Sports addressed that earlier this week.
After (or even during) the draft, if the Lions take a running back with a meaningful pick or at all, might be the time Swift trade rumors ramp up or teams come out of the woodwork with interest. Into the season before the trade deadline would be another point where he might become a prime trade candidate.
But trading Swift before the draft is somewhat in play, and there’s a chance a team makes the Lions an offer they should not refuse.