Now that the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft happened more than a week ago, we're starting to find out about some trades that almost happened. Or in some cases, what may have happened if trades didn't go down. Here are a few of the notable ones:
Cleveland wanted to trade up to picks Nos. 11 or 16; Haslam forced Manziel move
Noted draft pick tipper Jason La Canfora reported earlier this week that the Browns were close to trades with the Dallas Cowboys at No. 16 and the Titans at No. 11. That report was confirmed by Browns quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains. During an interview on Sports Talk with Bo Mattingly, Loggains said the Browns tried to trade up to both picks, presumably to take quarterback Johnny Manziel.
Of course, both of those trades fell through and Manziel slid down to the 22nd pick. At that point, Manziel texted Loggains, telling him "I wish you guys would come get me. Hurry up and draft me because I want to be there. I want to wreck this league together."
When Loggains informed the organization of Manziel’s desire to be in Cleveland, owner Jimmy Haslam told the team to "pull the trigger" and move up for Manziel. Indeed the Browns did, moving up from 26 to 22 with Philadelphia to select Manziel.
So much for those rumors that Haslam wasn't behind the Manziel pick. Oh, and why pick 22 to get Manziel? The Browns believed the Kansas City Chiefs would have taken him at 23 if he were available.
Buffalo wanted to move up to No. 1 for Sammy Watkins
Remember those pre-draft rumors about the Bills wanting to trade for the No. 1 pick in the draft? It seems they were real. Buffalo Bills director of player personnel Jim Monos said on the team’s website that the Bills tried to trade all the way up to No. 1 with the Houston Texans to select wide receiver Sammy Watkins.
"We went with Houston right off the bat," Monos said. "We tried to go to No. 1. They weren’t having it. They knew who they wanted, so we started working our way right down."
The Bills ended up giving Cleveland their first- and fourth-round picks this year and a first-round pick next year to move up to No. 4 to select Watkins. The cost of moving up to No. 1 would have been much more severe.
Minnesota wanted Manziel too
The Vikings tried to trade with Philadelphia, before Cleveland pulled it off, to go and get Johnny Manziel. Didn't work out.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) May 9, 2014
Had they not traded, the Dallas Cowboys would have drafted Kony Ealy
In the draft, the Cowboys moved up from the 47th pick to No. 34 and selected Boise State pass rusher Demarcus Lawrence. If Dallas stayed at 47, Missouri defensive end Kony Ealy would have been the choice.
"I would say that Ealy was probably our next pick. Sometimes what you read isn't always true, in terms of the (Tim) Jernigans of the world and people like that -- we really didn't have him in that mix," executive vice president Stephen Jones told Cowboys season-ticket holders. "We really felt like we needed some help at the right end after losing DeMarcus (Ware)."
The Cowboys were concerned that Ealy is a left end only. They graded Lawrence as the draft's second-best right end behind Jadeveon Clowney. The move cost Dallas the 78th pick overall. Jones admits that choice would likely have been LSU guard Trai Turner, a player Jones referred to as a "starting-type" player.