The offer was simply too good to turn down.
Under normal circumstances, the Dolphins wouldn’t even think about trading their talented left tackle Laremy Tunsil.
But these weren’t normal circumstances.
The Houston Texans offered the Dolphins a speed pass to their future. They did it in the form of three high value draft picks: two No. 1s and a No. 2. Yes, there were other pieces to this deal, the Dolphins sending Tunsil, wide receiver Kenny Stills and a fourth and sixth round pick to the Texans for those draft picks, offensive tackle Julien Davenport and cornerback/special teams standout Johnson Bademosi.
But let’s be honest here. It was the draft picks that made this the sweetest of deals.
Think about it. The Dolphins will now have two picks in each of the first two rounds next April and likely two picks in the third round as well due to the compensatory allocation for losing Ja’Wuan James.
But it’s not just the 2020 draft. The trade also means the Dolphins will now have two first round and two second round picks in 2021, giving them four firsts and four seconds over the next two years. Wowza!
What this trade also gives them is the flexibility to maneuver up and down the draft board – yes, for the next two years – if so desired. This can prove invaluable if there is one specific player (quarterback?) they target.
You get that kind of offer, even having to give up Tunsil and Stills, and you’ve got to swallow hard and proceed. See, you need to remember that the Dolphins need more than a top-tier left tackle to turn this around. They need an infusion of talent on both sides of the ball. They need elite players.
They need draft picks. Lots of draft picks. Now they have them. Now they have an opportunity to accelerate the process and to punctuate the influx of young players already on this roster with additional upgrades.
Sometimes you have to take one step back to take two steps forward. The Dolphins appear to have done just that.
“I felt this trade would help this team and this organization,” said coach Brian Flores, who emphasized that winning, and that includes this year, will always remain his top priority.
But in this league, you rarely get an opportunity to reap the type of return the Dolphins received from the Texans. The Cowboys pulled off a much bigger deal years ago in the Herschel Walker trade. Turned out pretty good for them, for those who recall. More recently, the Bears gave up two No. 1s and a few other picks to the Raiders for linebacker Khalil Mack. So it’s not like this is unchartered territory. But it isn’t traveled very often.
Yes, it’s painful giving up Tunsil. There is no disputing what he is and what he might become. If the Texans didn’t see that they wouldn’t have parted with as much as they did to get him. They could very well look at him as their final piece.
That wasn’t the case with the Dolphins. They need more pieces. Many more. This trade will give them just that. As previously stated, it was an offer that was simply too good to turn down.