Does the Roquan Smith trade still make sense six months later?
When it comes to replacing a single player, especially one as good as Smith, the key is to win through the aggregate. While it’s unlikely a single player will be able to match Smith’s value, several players can.
Rather than looking at the trade as a straight-up Smith for a second and fifth-round pick, the trade should be viewed as Smith for Edmunds and Bryan Edwards, the two linebackers signed with the space saved by not extending Smith, and the two draft picks.
One’s personal preference on this matter really comes down to where their team lies. A team like Baltimore that has win-now aspirations would prefer a known commodity, and a very good one at that, over future draft picks that may or may not be impact players.
A team like Chicago would be more inclined to choose the picks and extra cap space, as nailing draft selections and making splash signings in free agency are pivotal to the organization’s future. This sentiment remains every bit as true in March as it was in October.
I’m summation, the composite value of these assets for a team looking to rebuild appears to outweigh Smith’s production and skill.
Even though the Bears didn’t end up saving much money from trading Smith, they still got multiple draft picks and added formidable replacements that should benefit the defense in 2023.