NFL teams have until 4pm ET on Tuesday to finalize trades for the 2011 league year.
Compared with sports leagues that have much longer regular seasons, and allow for the inclusion of cash in transactions between clubs, the NFL's trade deadline tends to be an uneventful day. Last year's deadline blockbuster? The Kansas City Chiefs traded defensive end Alex Magee and a 2011 sixth-round pick (Allen Bradford) to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a 2011 fifth-round pick (Ricky Stanzi).
Magee is currently a free agent, the Buccaneers lost Bradford on waivers last week to the Seattle Seahawks, and Stanzi is the Chiefs' No. 3 quarterback, so they're the clear winners in that deadline deal.
Most of the limited trade action tends to occur in the 10-14 days leading up to the deadline. Last year, the Seahawks traded Deion Branch to the New England Patriots and acquired Marshawn Lynch from the Buffalo Bills before deadline day. The Philadelphia Eagles and Cleveland Browns swapped under-performing restricted free agent running backs Mike Bell (to Cleveland) and Jerome Harrison (to Philadelphia). The Patriots had also traded Laurence Maroney and Randy Moss well before the league's deadline dictated they do so.
This year has been no different.
Last week, the Seattle Seahawks traded former fourth overall pick Aaron Curry to the Oakland Raiders for a conditional draft choices in 2012 and 2013. On Monday, the Denver Broncos unloaded wide receiver Brandon Lloyd to the St. Louis Rams in exchange for a conditional draft choice in 2012.
Denver and Oakland could be among the few teams that are active on Tuesday, as well. The Broncos are open to traded quarterback Kyle Orton and wide receiver Eddie Royal, two players in the final years of their contracts, if the price is right. Orton was nearly traded to the Miami Dolphins during training camp, and with Tim Tebow taking over as the starter, the Broncos may want to get something for Orton.
Today is also the final day in 2011 that quarterback Carson Palmer will be available in a trade. Bengals owner Mike Brown remains unwilling to accommodate Palmer's trade request, but the Raiders are reportedly "trying hard" make one happen. Another player rumored to have interest on the trade market is Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte, but the club is not interested in trading the NFL's leader in yards from scrimmage.
The Detroit Lions could be in the market for a running back on Tuesday. Already without 2011 second-round running back Mikel Leshoure, who is on injured reserve with a torn Achilles, Lions running back Jahvid Best sustained his second concussion of the season during Sunday's 25-19 loss to the San Francisco 49ers. The Lions have veterans Maurice Morris and the aforementioned Harrison, but Best's concussion history -- he missed the final four games of his Cal career with a concussion -- Lions general manager Martin Mayhew may be look to acquire a running back with a skill-set similar to Best for depth purposes.
While an inter-division trade with the Bears appears unlikely, Mayhew could acquire former Cal Bear Justin Forsett, who is one of two Seahawks running backs in the final year of his contract, with the other being Lynch, another former Cal star. Seattle re-signed Leon Washington to a four-year, $12 million contract extension before the lockout and Lynch would likely be a higher priority than Forsett next offseason.
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told NBC's Alex Flanagan on Sunday that their No. 3 running back, Tashard Choice, is available in a trade, but with Felix Jones out with a high ankle sprain, they may be more inclined to hang onto Choice.