There's nothing better than an NFL player-for-player trade involving big(gish) names. And we got one on Monday when the Chiefs sent their disgruntled, first-round bust of a wideout Jonathan Baldwin to the 49ers for their disgruntled, first-round bust of a wideout A.J. Jenkins.
It's blatantly a situation designed to try and infuse some new life in a pair of crummy players by giving them a new environment.
"We felt like this trade was beneficial for all parties involved,” Chiefs General Manager John Dorsey said. “A.J. is a talented individual with a skillset that we feel can add value to our football team. Jon Baldwin is a hardworking player and a professional. We wish him nothing but the best moving forward."
Combined the two players have 41 catches ... and all of those catches belong to Baldwin. Jenkins was the 49ers first-round pick in 2012 and didn't catch a single pass as a rookie despite the 49ers being thin on the wide receiver front last year. As the Chiefs note in their press release, however, he did "see action" in three games last season.
Randy Moss, who was clearly too old to be playing last season, took snaps from the rookie. There were rumblings that the Niners planned on cutting Jenkins before his second season. Obviously getting something in return is preferable.
Baldwin wasn't a lock for a roster spot either, under this new regime. He's been a bit of an issue on and off the field and simply hadn't lived up to his billing. (Fun story: in Michael Holley's book War Room, Bill Belichick told Thomas Dimitroff he shouldn't trade up for Julio Jones because Baldwin was basically the same player. So, yeah.)
This trade won't solve any of the wideout issues for either team. But it does avoid a likely roster cut of a high-profile player and give a pair of wide receiver needy teams -- who just played no less! -- a chance to gamble on some talent to turn it around in a new location.