Rumors Washington Commanders trade star player at NFL Draft grows after Wednesday decision

Speculation that the Washington Commanders could trade one of their top players during the 2023 NFL Draft seemingly intensified after the team made a major contract decision on Wednesday.

The Washington Commanders had a solid season in 2022, but it was well below their hopes for the season. The team finished 8-8-1 in one of the best divisions in the NFL, but obviously, they need to improve certain areas of the roster if they want to overcome the Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, and New York Giants to win the NFC East title in 2023.

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One way to do that, aside from free agency, is to load up on assets in the NFL Draft this year or in future years. The Washington Commanders might be able to get a solid haul of picks by trading away one of their star players. And that idea was actually suggested on Wednesday by ESPN NFL insider Dan Graziano.

“Another team to watch for potential trades is the Washington Commanders. Edge rusher Montez Sweat is heading into his fifth-year option season and has yet to have his contract extended beyond 2023. Fellow edge rusher Chase Young still hasn’t had his fifth-year option for 2024 exercised.

“Some wonder whether the Commanders will want to deal with a situation where, in 2024, Young is playing on his fifth-year option and Sweat on the franchise tag. So at some point, Washington might have to decide between those two players, and trading one of them could be the answer.”

– Dan Graziano

Chances of Washington Commanders’ trading Chase Young soon increases

Washington Commanders
Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Well, it seems like the Washington Commanders made a choice between Sweat and Young and unofficially put one of them on the trade block before the start of the 2023 NFL Draft on Thursday. On Wednesday, Washington Post Commanders reporter Nicki Jhabvala revealed that after speculation for weeks, the team does not intend to pick up the fifth-year option on Chase Young’s contract.

  • Chase Young stats (2022): 3 games, 0 sacks, 5 tackles, 1 QB hit

The Washington Commanders could certainly have Young play for them in 2023, try to trade him before the trade deadline, or let him walk in free agency next spring. However, with the team needing to address several holes, trying to move him before or during the NFL Draft to get players that could help them this season would make far more sense.

Young played in just three games for Washington last season after being knocked out of the 2021 season after nine games with an ACL tear. The 24-year-old was a Pro Bowler in his rookie season as he tallied 7.5 sacks, four forced fumbles, and 44 tackles.

This article was originally published on and is republished here with permission.

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