Watching the New York Giants this season has been a train wreck to say the least. Despite having proven talent on both sides of the ball and a Super Bowl winning coaching staff, the Giants have been the NFLs doormat in 2013, posting a putrid 1-6 record after many predicted they would contend for the NFC East division title.
There are always issues in a 1-6 teams locker room, Hakeem Nicks frustration with the Giants is reaching a boiling point. From calling out his quarterback to being called out by his coach, there seems to be a growing rift between the talented receiver and the organization that is becoming increasingly difficult to ignore. With the trade deadline fast approaching and the hope of a long term resolution fading, one has to think that both the Giants and other NFL teams are exploring the option of a Hakeem Nicks trade.
There certainly wouldn’t be a shortage of receiver needy teams, as injuries and a lack of production are threatening to undo many of the NFLs top franchises this season. Where will Hakeem Nicks end up this season? Right now there is no definitive answer, but here are five teams that Nicks has a shot at suiting up for after the deadline.
5. New England Patriots
Watching Tom Brady struggle due to the ineptitude of his receivers has been wonderful for most NFL fans, but the fact remains that Brady does deserve much better and the Patriots will need much better receiver play if they are going to be serious threats for a Super Bowl title.
Hakeem Nicks would provide an immediate number one target that could turn the Patriots back into one of the most explosive passing attacks in football. The only issue here is Bill Bellichicks dislike for trades. He believes in stockpiling picks and turning role players into stars on the cheap in free agency, not dealing for damaged goods on the trade market. Some would say that rules out the Patriots automatically, but I believe Bellichick may make an exception to get his offense back to its usual production.
4. Green Bay Packers
Watching the Green Bay Packers offense stall against the Ravens with only two healthy receivers was frustrating to watch as a fan of high powered offenses. The Packers molliwhopping the Browns the following week was a big improvement, but the Packers receiving corps took yet another blow when Jermichael Finley was hospitalized and is expected to be out a significant time with a neck injury.
The Packers are 4-2, but Aaron Rodgers weapons are dropping like flies and the Packers need to do something. Adding Hakeem Nicks would be a move that would pay off big dividends not just this year, but for years to come with Nicks joining a healthy Randall Cobb, Jordy Nelson, and James Jones to form the scariest receiving corps the NFL has ever seen.
3. Atlanta Falcons
Roddy White has been left hapless by various injuries this year, Julio Jones is out for the season, and the 2-4 Atlanta Falcons postseason hopes are fading fast. Matt Ryan needs weapons, and even though Harry Douglas played like a man possessed against the Buccaneers he cannot be trusted as a consistent number one option.
If the Falcons still believe they can compete this season, Nicks is a must for them. The Falcons defense scares no one, and right now the offense lacks the fire power to be a serious threat to anyone. They either need to trade Tony Gonzalez to a contender and close up shop for the year, or throw some picks at the Giants in hopes of getting Nicks.
2. Detroit Lions
We’ve been saying it for years: in order for the Lions offense to be at its best, there needs to be a legitimate option opposite of Johnson in the passing game. That receiver is obviously not Nate Burleson, Titus Young, Ryan Broyles, or Kris Durham. However, that receiver may be dwindling away in New York and was the subject of trade rumors to Detroit a few weeks prior.
Getting Hakeem Nicks would above all be a statement move in a tight NFC North. The Bears are reeling and the Packers ceiling is lowering with their depleted receiving corps, so if the Lions are serious about being a contender a move like this is a must.
1. Indianapolis Colts
How bitter sweet was Sunday night for both Peyton and Luck? Peyton returned home but suffered a loss, and Luck got the proverbial monkey off of his back by beating the legend he replaced, but watched his only consistent offensive weapon go down for the season with a torn ACL.
The Colts are in win-now mode, and after wins against the 49ers, Seahawks, and Broncos, it’s hard to blame them. Their receiving corps was suspect at best with Wayne in the lineup, but with him gone Luck may be in for a rough season from here if they don’t do something quickly. Adding Hakeem Nicks makes the most sense for the Colts, as they have proven they will do whatever it takes to win a championship this year by acquiring Trent Richardson from the Browns in exchange for a first round pick, and they are the contender that is most desperate for a receiver.