The Herschel Walker trade is arguably the biggest blockbuster the NFL has ever seen. In October of 1989, Dallas elected to trade the running back to the Minnesota Vikings in a deal that saw a treasure trove of players and picks head back to the Cowboys. They were able to morph that collection of draft picks into running back Emmitt Smith, defensive tackle Russell Maryland and safety Darren Woodson among others. More importantly, that deal helped springboard the Cowboys to three Super Bowl titles.
Is history about to repeat itself in Texas? Well, the mastermind behind that previous deal doesn't think so.
The NFL has been ablaze with rumors in the aftermath of Deshaun Watson officially requesting a trade from the Houston Texans. Given his rather manageable contract, youth, and MVP-caliber talent, any deal that is ultimately executed to send Watson to a new team has the potential to rise to the Herschel Walker status, and possibly exceed it by a wide margin.
That being said, Jimmy Johnson, who was the beneficiary to the Walker deal, doesn't believe the Texans should pull the trigger on such a deal. In fact, the former Cowboys coach is of the opinion that they should do everything in their power to keep him in Houston.
"If I was David Culley I'd go knock on his door," Johnson told ESPN about what the new Texans head coach should do as he adopts this Watson debacle, via Pro Football Talk. "I would talk to him and I'd do whatever it takes, I'd put my ego aside, I'd say, 'The best thing for you is to stay right here.' Do whatever it takes. Do not lose that player."
Of course, there is a big difference between trading Walker and the likes of Watson simply due to the positions they play. Nowadays, running back is a bit more expendable while elite quarterbacks like Watson are invaluable.
"They're not going to win any games if they don't have a quarterback," said Johnson. "Do whatever it takes. Make concessions. Keep that quarterback."
While Johnson is correct, it may be past the point of no return for Watson with the Texans. To piggyback off of his larger sentiment, however, Houston needs to meticulously look at each trade package that they're are getting for a great number of teams. Whichever one gives them the best opportunity at landing the next star quarterback to succeed Watson is the road they should go down.