With the 53-man roster cutdown looming, the New York Giants and Cincinnati Bengals got ahead of the game by engaging in a trade designed to ensure they got their preferred target and did not have to subject themselves to the waiver process. The trade involved New York sending defensive tackle B.J. Hill and a conditional seventh-round draft pick to Cincinnati in exchange for offensive lineman Billy Price.
In the interest of getting right to the point, we're here to grade the trade, so let's do just that.
The Giants are strong along the interior defensive line, where they have Leonard Williams, Dexter Lawrence, Austin Johnson, and Danny Shelton. So, they could afford to move Hill -- a rotational contributor who saw his snap share drop from 59% as a rookie to 44% in his second season and 35% last year.
The Giants also need all the help they can get along the offensive line, as we've seen throughout the preseason. Daniel Jones was among the most heavily pressured quarterbacks in the NFL last season, and he remained under duress during the warm-up contests this summer.
Price is an interesting buy-low flier. He's a former first-round pick, so there is some talent there, but he has not played particularly well since entering the league and lost his starting spot lat year. It's also notable that Price plays on the interior of the offensive line (he's gotten snaps at both guard and center) when it seems like the Giants need more help at tackle.
The Giants traded from a position of strength and technically got help at a position of need, but it's unclear whether Price will be much help.
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Cincinnati clearly lost patience with Price's development, and it should be noted that he was drafted under the previous regime, before head coach Zac Taylor arrived. With the Bengals drafting four interior linemen -- Michael Jordan, Jackson Carman, D'Ante Smith, and Trey Hill -- and signing Quinton Spain and Xavier Su'a-Filo, all since Price was drafted, he made for an obvious trade candidate.
Still, the Bengals are not exactly set along the offensive line. Their group up front was among the league's worst last season, and Joe Burrow was often running for his life behind the line. It's not entirely clear that they have upgraded enough to the point where they should feel good about what they had.
That said, if they were going to cut Price anyway (which seems likely given they were willing to trade him and that they have signed and drafted several replacements), then moving him for a piece along the defensive line makes a degree of sense. After signing Trey Hendrickson and drafting Joseph Ossai to complement Sam Hubbard on the edge, it's likely that the defensive interior was a bigger position of need.
Hill has shown very little since his rookie season, though. Unless he can recapture the form that allowed him to notch 5.5 sacks in 2018, he's unlikely to be much more than a depth piece that gives the starters some rest.