The New York Giants and the Las Vegas Raiders have agreed on a trade that sends tight end Darren Waller to the Giants in exchange for the 100th overall pick, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.
The 100th overall pick was acquired by Joe Schoen and the Giants in the trade that sent Kadarius Toney to the Kansas City Chiefs last season. The pick is a compensational pick that the Chiefs received form the Chicago Bears.
The Raiders have been active this week, as they plan to sign quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and wide receiver Jakobi Meyers to contracts. The move signals a shift in the roster with Josh McDaniels.
Knowing all the details of this trade, we can fully evaluate the deal for both sides. Let’s get into the grades
Giants receive TE Darren Waller: A-
There is no question that Darren Waller adds a dangerous weapon to the Giants offense for Daniel Jones, which is something they desperately needed. It might not be a wide receiver, but there is still time in free agency and the draft to add there. Considering the fact that they are giving up the pick that they got in return for Kadarius Toney, the compensation does not hurt too much for the Giants to give up.
Waller has struggled with injuries over the last couple of seasons, playing in 11 games in 2021 and nine games in 2022, but he is still dangerous when on the field. He was absolutely elite in 2019 and 2020, when he had over 1100 receiving yards in both seasons.
Waller is going into his age 31 season, so he is not getting any younger. However, when looking at his contract, the Giants have flexibility to move on or restructure after his first year on the team. Waller’s cap hit for 2023 is just below $12 million, according to Spotrac. He is under contract through the 2026 season, but the Giants can release Waller with no dead cap penalties after this upcoming season. So if Waller doesn’t work out with the Giants, they can move on without having anything tied up. If Waller produces for Daniel Jones, the Giants can work on a new deal with him. There is basically no downside.
The Giants aren’t getting prime Darren Waller, so that is the reason for the A- grade, taking everything into account this is a no-brainer decision for Joe Schoen.
Raiders receive 100th overall pick: B-
It has been clear for anyone who has paid attention to the Raiders that Waller has been getting phased out, especially since the arrival of Davante Adams and head coach Josh McDaniels. The Raiders have an agreement in place for wide receiver Jakobi Meyers as well, so Waller would have been phased out even more if he was staying.
Getting a third round pick for a player who has a recent injury history and is clearly not part of the head coach’s plans on offense is good business, even if it is a pick that will be at the end of the third round.
However, the Raiders reportedly rejected a second-round pick from the Packers for Waller at the trade deadline, according to Art Stapleton of NJ.com. The Raiders held onto Waller a bit too long. They were clearly in a position where they should have sold off pieces at the deadline last season, and taking the second-round pick for Waller would have been the better move.
This move still makes sense for the Raiders, but they could have maximized value better, so they get a B- for this trade.