Trent Williams top landing spots: Five teams that could trade for Redskins’ Pro Bowl offensive tackle

After much ado, the Washington Redskins have reportedly finally granted Trent Williams permission to seek a trade, allowing their longtime left tackle the freedom to pursue what he’s loudly and publicly desired since the 2019 season: A new home. It remains to be seen, of course, if Washington’s restructured front office will actually follow through on dealing the seven-time Pro Bowler. We don’t know which teams will come calling and what they’ll be offering, and we definitely don’t know if the Redskins will hold out for especially premium compensation — something that kept Williams tied to their roster through 2019’s in-season trade deadline.

Who, exactly, could be after the big man, though? Here are five of the most logical landing spots for Williams:

Cleveland Browns

It might’ve been better for everyone if Williams had already landed here, but that doesn’t mean the Browns won’t — or shouldn’t — be interested now. Months after they were reported to be in touch with Washington about acquiring the left tackle, Cleveland remains in search of a blind-side bodyguard for Baker Mayfield, who was battered so much in 2019 that he lost all sense of pocket presence. Their incumbent left tackle just got arrested for allegedly hauling 157 pounds of weed. They’ve got the money to re-up Williams immediately. And as a bonus, Williams’ former O-line coach, Bill Callahan, is now working under Kevin Stefanski in Cleveland.

Denver Broncos

The Broncos staff praises Garett Bolles’ durability because they can’t praise much of anything else he does. If there’s an opportunity to upgrade, you can rest assured John Elway will consider it. He’s crowned Drew Lock the guy under center, and he knows he needs to protect him. He also hasn’t balked at dipping into the veteran market for LT help before, taking a chance on Russell Okung back in 2016. Best of all, Denver has plenty of money and draft picks to throw at Williams and Washington, respectively, because of its recent overhaul.

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars are a mess for many reasons, and they’ve already kicked off what’s sure to be an offseason of overhaul by dealing former free-agent prize cornerback A.J. Bouye to save money. They’re just one year removed, for crying out loud, from handing Nick Foles $88 million, and he’s not even the guy they seem bent on building around at quarterback. But that’s also the point: If young Gardner Minshew is the centerpiece moving forward, the Jags will likely prioritize his side of the ball, and what would be better than shifting Cam Robinson to guard and plugging a repeat Pro Bowler on Minshew’s blindside? It helps that Williams’ former coach, Jay Gruden, is now in charge of Jacksonville’s offense.

Los Angeles Rams

Andrew Whitworth wasn’t the main issue on L.A.’s leaky line in 2019, but at 38 years old, he’s no longer the guy that helped pave the way to Super Bowl contention. The Rams have already sunk huge money into Jared Goff, and at this point, their best bet — outside of cutting him to save cash in 2021 and trying to reunite Sean McVay with Kirk Cousins — is to beef up his blocking like there’s no tomorrow. For the Rams to return to form, they cannot afford another stretch of skittish Goff, and Williams already has experience under McVay. They’ve also got enough cap flexibility — and more than enough front-office boldness — to swing a deal.

New York Jets

Sam Darnold was, for the most part, not a pretty sight in 2019. His LT, Kelvin Beachum, is also set to hit free agency after battling injuries all year. New general manager Joe Douglas, meanwhile, shouldn’t be averse to pursuing an older bookend after helping the Philadelphia Eagles re-sign the ageless Jason Peters in recent offseasons. With an estimated $56 million or so in cap space to work with, he also shouldn’t have a problem giving Williams a big deal upon arrival.

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