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Top 5 teams to trade for Zach Ertz

It’s basically a given that before the 2021 season starts, a team will trade for Zach Ertz. Much in Philadelphia changed because of the 2020 season. It was only a year ago, fresh off being 2019 NFC East division winners, the Eagles were entering the draft to re-tool before another campaign in pursuit of their second Lombardi. They had their franchise QB, their Super Bowl winning head coach, an offensive line looking to get healthy with three Pro-Bowlers and a first-round pick left tackle, a solid running back, and a deep defensive line.

Their two questions were in the secondary and at receiver, so they made the big trade to get Darius Slay and sign him to an extension. With their first-round pick, they drafted Jalen Reagor to be an explosive receiver to couple up with Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson. Surely, injuries could not strike as badly as they did the year prior and if they did they could still overcome it.

What a difference a year can make. Doug Pederson was fired, Carson Wentz was traded for something short of a haul to the Colts, and they have holes all around as their horrendous misses in the draft have finally caught up with them. They gave up their 6th overall pick to move back to move back to 12th in order to get another first round pick next year. In doing so, they passed up on two elite pass catchers in Kyle Pitts and Ja’Marr Chase. The Eagles have been surpassed by all of their division rivals and have found themselves in full rebuild mode.

Although nothing official yet, it’s very clear that this rebuild will also mean the end of Zach Ertz’s tenure as an Eagle.

With Dallas Goedert stepping in to fill his shoes, keeping Ertz as a part of a rebuild makes little sense. This is especially true given his contract and the team’s cap situation. They started the offseason at $50M over the cap, only behind the Saints at close to $100M. The Eagles are now under the cap, by less than $1M, thanks to moves such as cutting Jackson and Jeffery. They still have more moves to make in order to have the room to sign draft picks, such as possibly parting ways with Derek Barnett.

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Either by cutting him or trading him, the Eagles will not have Zach Ertz on the roster for the start of the 2021 season. Just like all of the Eagles last season, he had a disappointing and injury-riddled year, but at age 31 he can still be a valuable addition to offenses. They will definitely be able to get something in return for him, so I would not expect him to be released.

As per Over the Cap, a pre-June 1st trade would save the team just over $4.9M. I would expect a trade right before, or possibly sometime on day 2 of the draft.

Los Angeles Rams:

A team that likes to use multiple tight end sets and they lost Gerald Everett to the Seahawks in free agency. Ertz would step in as the number 1 tight end ahead of Tyler Higbee. He’s a serviceable blocker, but would help to take some of the pressure off of Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp in the passing game.

Indianapolis Colts:

This is probably the most obvious choice as Zach Ertz would be reunited with Carson Wentz and Frank Reich. Ertz would be a great addition to an offense that draft Michael Pittman Jr last year and re-signed TY Hilton. Ertz would be a great target to add to their pay action passing game, which linebackers will be crashing down on due to their unbelievable talent and depth in that position with Jonathan Taylor, Nyheim Hines, and Marlon Mack returning.

New York Jets:

I think this is the most likely outcome for Zach Ertz. The Jets will more than likely still have a tremendous need at the tight end position, unless they somehow draft Kyle Pitts. Robert Saleh saw first-hand in San Francisco with George Kittle what an athletic tight end can do for an offense and how difficult they are to matchup with on defense. Adding Ertz to pass catchers like Denzel Mims, Corey Davis, and Jamison Crowder would create a formidable offense around whoever their QB ends up being.

Arizona Cardinals:

The Cardinals are in a win-now mode, while Kyler Murray is still on a rookie contract. Ertz could tear up between the hashes while DeAndre Hopkins and AJ Green dominate on the outside. A trade for Zach Ertz would seem to fit their offseason pretty well as they’re already betting on several aging stars to still have more left in the tank with signings like Green, JJ Watt, and Malcolm Butler.

Green Bay Packers:

What feels like Aaron Rodgers’ last year in Green Bay, the team can trade for Zach Ertz, keep him for a year and move on from him pretty easily after 2021. They need help along the offensive line and some pass catchers to appease Rodgers. We see them addressing the line during the draft, so trading for a cheaper, former Pro Bowl tight end with zero long-term commitment would seem to fit right in with their plans.

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