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ESPN’s Bill Barnwell thinks Seahawks would get a first-round pick if they traded DK Metcalf

Would John and Pete be willing to move on if another team offered them an R1?

NFL: OCT 15 Seahawks at Bengals Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

On Thursday morning, in a monster of an article that’s behind the ESPN+ paywall, Bill Barnwell theorized that the Seattle Seahawks would net a first-round pick if they were to decide to trade DK Metcalf.

Now, to be fair, DK was only one of the 102 players that Bill Barnwell identified as being worth an R1, and he’s not even the Seahawks’ most valuable player, trade-wise, according to Barnwell.

But the headline got you here so I’m not going to apologize for it.

Especially since I was the first one (that I’m aware of) to advocate for trading DK Metcalf - way back on February 12th, 2021.

Back then, y’all thought I was nuts; today, maybe not so much.

Here’s what Barnwell wrote about Metcalf:

Metcalf has gotten his long-term deal, but he’s still only 25 and is unguardable when he’s on his game. Still, 2020 is looming more and more like a career season, given that he had 1,303 yards and hasn’t topped 1,050 yards before or after. He has plenty of time to prove that the pandemic year wasn’t an outlier, though.


Here are the other players that Barnwell thinks would net the Seahawks an R1, and what he wrote about them . . .

WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba

Smith-Njigba hasn’t done much through five games, but I don’t see any reason to devalue him when he was widely seen as the best wideout in April’s class.

CB Riq Woolen

Woolen might have a case to be even higher, given that he was a Pro Bowl-caliber cornerback last season and will make just under $3 million over the next three seasons combined. He has allowed a 117.7 passer rating in coverage this season, so the 2022 fifth-round pick might still be recovering to get back to 100% after undergoing a knee scope in May, but he could make this trade value look foolish by returning to his rookie form by the end of 2023.


Jamal Adams just missed the cut, and I think Barnwell has a higher opinion of him than a lot of Seahawks fans:

We’re only a few years removed from these very Seahawks trading two first-round picks to acquire S Jamal Adams, and while I’m not sure that deal has aged well given Adams’ injuries, I don’t recall many fans being too upset about the trade when he was playing at a Pro Bowl level in 2020. He turned 28 on Tuesday, so he could still have some good football ahead if he stays healthy.


Seattle also has TWO players that Barnwell thinks would net an R1 “and change”. Those players are . . .

LT Charles Cross

Cross has been sidelined and then slowed by a sprained toe, but the No. 9 overall pick in last year’s draft did enough as a rookie to entrench himself as a franchise building block. There aren’t many above-average left tackles on rookie deals going around, and the ones who do hit the trade market inspire outlandish trade prices. Cross wouldn’t go for the Tunsil deal, but he would go for more than a first-rounder.

CB Devon Witherspoon

Island games don’t count for more than typical Sunday performances, but Witherspoon’s performance on the national stage against the Giants earlier this month was one of the most impressive games you’ll see a rookie cornerback play. It’s been fun to watch Pete Carroll tinker and try to find the best place to use Witherspoon, but the good news for the Seahawks is there doesn’t really seem to be a bad solution.


Personally, I don’t think there’s any chance the Seahawks would trade any of these players at this point in time.

But with the trade deadline rapidly approaching, you never know.

Go Hawks!

Bonus Coverage

Here’s the breakdown for our NFC West rivals:

San Francisco 49ers:

The Whiners have six players on Barnwell’s list and, honestly, it’s a little surprising that it isn’t more.

  • Two R1s and change: DE Nick Bosa
  • An R1 and change: LB Fred Warner and RB Christian McCaffrey
  • One R1: WR Brandon Aiyuk, S Talanoa Hufanga, and . . . wait for it . . . QB Brock Purdy
  • Just missed: TE George Kittle, LT Trent Williams, WR Deebo Samuel, DT Javon Hargrave, LB Dre Greenlaw, and CB Charvarius Ward.


Los Angeles Rams:

The Lambs have four players on Barnwell’s list, none of whom are at all surprising. The values though . . . those are at least a little surprising.

  • One R1 and change: DT Aaron Donald and WR Puka Nacua
  • One R1: QB Matthew Stafford and WR Cooper Kupp
  • Honorable mention: OLB Byron Young

Note: “Honorable mention” isn’t the same as “Just missed”; Young is simply “the most exciting player from their 2023 draft class” who isn’t named Puka Nacua.


Arizona Cardinals

Last, and least, the Cards have two players on Barnwell’s list.

  • An R1 and change: OT Paris Johnson Jr.
  • One R1: QB Kyler Murray*

Note: The asterisk on Murray is because Barnwell lists him as being worth an R1, but then immediately undermines that by saying, “If healthy . . .” and lamenting his 5-year, $230M contract.

  • Missing out: WR Marquise Brown (worth an R2) and S Budda Baker (worth a midround selection)



  • San Francisco 6
  • Seattle 5
  • L.A. 4
  • Arizona 2