Jacksonville Jaguars left tackle Luke Joeckel is on the trade block. It isn't official, but he's expendable. He was fine in 2015 (not good and certainly not great) but with an influx of free agent offensive linemen over the past two years, including Kelvin Beachum and a contract that certainly puts Joeckel on notice, general manager Dave Caldwell knows he can deal Joeckel away for future draft picks if he wants to.
Last week, it was Albert Breer who linked the New York Jets with the former No. 2 overall pick. This week, it's ESPN's Mike Sando who thinks the Seattle Seahawks could be potential trade suitors before or during the 2016 NFL Draft.
Jacksonville Jaguars LT Luke Joeckel to the Seattle Seahawks for a conditional 2017 draft choice.
Seattle is in the market for a left tackle after letting Russell Okung depart in free agency. Joeckel, the second overall pick of the 2013 draft, could be the odd man out in Jacksonville after the Jaguars signed Kelvin Beachum. Ankle injuries limited Joeckel to five games last season. The Seahawks would absorb a nearly $3.3 million charge against their cap to accommodate Joeckel's base salary for 2016. And they would have to exercise an expensive fifth-year contract option to keep him in 2017.
Those considerations and the uncertainties surrounding Joeckel's health/performance explain why a conditional 2017 draft choice might make sense as compensation. Perhaps Seattle would commit a 2017 mid-round pick that can upgrade based on playing time.
If Joeckel is going to get dealt, it's likely his maximum trade value could be realized before the draft rather than during it. If the draft ends and Joeckel isn't gone, he's likely on the team for 2016.
But it's a smart move by Caldwell if he pulls the trigger. Joeckel is in the last year of his contract and even if Beachum is only as good as Joeckel, it's a free draft pick (or two) that can be had in exchange of one year on the roster.