NFL fans must have constantly been refreshing their social media feeds before 4 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
They expected a massive wave of transactions to pop out as the trade deadline neared.
However, there was not much noise coming from beat reporters and media personalities when the clock turned to 4:01.
There was a scarcity of blockbuster trades to divulge as franchises opted to maintain the status quo.
I love the NFL
I love the NFL Draft
I love start of Free Agency
I love training camp
I love NFL Games
(the trade deadline sucks)
— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) November 2, 2021
Von Miller’s inclusion to the menacing Los Angeles Rams defense was the only deal that generated massive shockwaves near the deadline.
The Denver Broncos will still pay for the remainder of Miller’s 2021 salary while getting the Rams’ second and third-round picks next year.
Meanwhile, the Kansas City Chiefs acquired pass rusher Melvin Ingram from the Pittsburgh Steelers for a sixth-round pick.
Other than those transactions, this season’s trade deadline did not generate much noise.
Broncos And Rams Were The Most Active
It’s not that they had much competition during the first two days of November.
There was only one trade near the deadline that did not involve either Denver or Los Angeles.
The San Francisco 49ers acquired pass rusher Charles Omenihu from the Houston Texans for a sixth-round pick in 2023.
— Coach Yac 🗣 (@Coach_Yac) November 2, 2021
Aside from letting go of the Super Bowl 50 MVP, the Broncos also dealt cornerback Kary Vincent Jr. to the Philadelphia Eagles for a 2022 sixth-round selection.
After the trade deadline, teams can still add players through waivers.
However, the talent level among released players often isn’t game-changing.
Discussed But Not Finalized
If these were television series, they are like pilot episodes that did not even reach the production stage.
However, the ratings would go through the roof if they pushed through.
The New Orleans Saints and the Cleveland Browns discussed a trade involving Odell Beckham Jr.
Saints tried to land Odell Beckham Jr. at the trade deadline, per report https://t.co/HRFJonaGkR
— Canal St. Chronicles (@SaintsCSC) November 2, 2021
However, both sides couldn’t come to terms, and the Browns still believe that Beckham can become a productive player.
The Buffalo Bills and the Washington Football Team also explored a trade regarding Mitchell Trubisky.
This, which never fully came to fruition, was Buffalo sending Mitch Trubisky to Washington Football Team. Was assured this morning it was just about done, which is why I tweeted “might.”
I’m now 0-2 on these nearly consummated trades. I get it if you’re ticked. Wasn’t for clicks https://t.co/AM1yr8yHzg
— Chris Trapasso (@ChrisTrapasso) November 2, 2021
Seattle also held onto defensive end L.J. Collier despite trade rumors.
Finally, Deshaun Watson remained with the Texans after a potential deal with the Miami Dolphins ended up in smoke.
Why The Quiet Trade Deadline?
Two reasons prevented teams from pulling the trigger at the trade deadline: depth and salary cap.
Injuries may happen any time, and they wouldn’t want to lose able reserves, especially during the tail end of the regular season.
This reality rings the loudest for teams that have a legitimate chance for a playoff berth.
Acquiring or releasing a player might disrupt the excellent chemistry they already have.
The NFL trade deadline every year pic.twitter.com/EI7pgzlJVU
— Pardon My Take (@PardonMyTake) November 2, 2021
Meanwhile, not all teams have substantial cap space left to bring in a marquee player.
A franchise would have to perform salary cap gymnastics to absorb the player’s contract.
Lucky for the Rams, the Broncos will pay $9 million of the $9.722 million that Miller is yet to earn this season.
Therefore, they can absorb the $722,223 left to their roughly $5 million cap space before the trade.
With the NFL’s trade deadline now behind us, all players that are released are subject to waivers. Previously, it was just players with less than four years of service.
If a team claims a player, it inherits the balance of his contract.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) November 2, 2021
Finally, there’s no guarantee that a quick fix at the trade deadline will yield dividends.
Teams would instead proceed with who they already have because it’s only three months to the offseason.
After all, they can renegotiate for the player they want once the 2022 NFL calendar year starts.