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Will talk of Falcons trading up create competition between teams trading back?

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Atlanta may be poised to get decent trade value if they do move up.

NFL Combine - Day 1 Photo by Alika Jenner/Getty Images

With the 2020 NFL draft right around the corner, the rumors about team targets and potential trades are hitting a fever pitch. The Falcons have already been linked as one of the 3 teams eager to trade up next week. The rumors are also suggesting that Atlanta is targeting a specific player, adding meat to the story.

That said, NFL teams also love trading back. Dropping back 4 to 8 spots may not make much of a difference in the caliber of player you land, but it could net you a few more picks as well. With the Falcons sitting at 16, they could feasibly find interested trade partners in the Cardinals (8), Jaguars (9), Browns (10), Jets (11) and Raiders (12). This presents an interesting situation for the team. If they’re looking to jump ahead of a team like Tampa Bay (14), they have several options.

If all of these teams are interested in trading back, could Atlanta leverage that interest into a better package for them to move up?

Trades in the first round are pretty common now and even though the NFL has generally relied on trade value charts like this one, that trend has been bucked in recent years. Don’t get me wrong, Atlanta is not going to move up to #2 to grab Chase Young for our first and fifth. That said, we have seen teams make moves up in the first round without having to give up a haul to do so.

As an example, in 2018, the Buffalo Bills moved from 22 to 16 and gave up their third round pick to do so, while also getting back the Ravens fifth round pick. Traditionally, first round moves have almost always involved a second rounder, but that trend has loosened in recent years.

With all the talk about the Falcons being hot to move up, the league is now on notice. All of those teams in the 6 to 12 range could see themselves as a potential trade partner for the team, especially if their top player is off the board by then. If Dimitroff plays this right, he could drive down the cost of trading up by pitting these teams against one another. If there’s one thing Thomas Dimitroff has done well, it’s make moves in the first.

What do you think? Should the Falcons trade up and will they find plenty of willing partners to do so?