Sep 15, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford (8) looks up from the sidelines in the second half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons won 31-24. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

The "Mystery" Of Sam Bradford: What Is His Trade Value?

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The NFL offseason is a magical “dead period” in sports, filled with smoke screens, trade speculation, and a multitude of free agents “testing the waters.” Last season, the St. Louis Rams were left out of most of the fun, not having a Top 5 draft sparking a bidding among NFL owners. We did have a solid week of #WhileWaitingForJake tweets, but that was about the height of the excitement in Rams Nation.

With the Rams currently owning the rights to the No.2 overall pick in the 2014 Draft and also currently housing an “under-achieving,” No.1 overall quarterback on their roster, rumors have already started spreading throughout the league. Less than 24 hours ago, Sports Illustrated’s Chris Burke named Sam Bradford as one of his potential “big-name” cap casualties this offseason. He cites the Bradford situation as a “mystery” despite repeated proclamations from both Les Snead and Jeff Fisher that the Sooner legend will return as the starter in 2014.

However, this wouldn’t be the first time that media has pressed the idea of Sam Bradford moving on from St. Louis. Back in 2012, prior to the Robert Griffin III trade, many were speculating that the Rams might opt to maintain their place at No.2 in the draft, and instead move Bradford to the highest bidder. Around The League writer, Chris Wesseling, spoke about that process in-depth around this time last year, citing reports of several times interested in the former No.1 overall pick. In fact, he writes…

How high were teams willing to go? Sports Illustrated’s Peter King tells NBC Sports Network’s Erik Kuselius that the Rams would have received a “high first-round pick” in return had they opted to deal Bradford.

Nearly two years later, strikingly similar rumors and hypothetical discussions are starting to rise again about Sam Bradford.

Very favorable, eh? While there is no doubt that Sam Bradford will be returning to the St. Louis Rams in 2014, the idea of trading him is certainly intriguing. If Sam Bradford would have fetched a “high first-round pick” back in 2012, what could he garner in 2014?

Well, back in 2009, the New England Patriots were able to snag the No.34 overall pick from the Kansas City Chiefs in exchange for Matt Cassel. In 2011, the Arizona Cardinals traded their second rounder and Pro Bowl cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to the Philadelphia Eagles for Kevin Kolb. Most recently, just this last offseason, the Kansas City Chiefs traded their 2014 second rounder to the San Francisco 49ers for the services of Alex Smith.

Seems like a “fair” market price for a talented quarterback in the modern trade marker is a second rounder. Would that (hypothetically) be enough to satisfy those in Rams Nation who are in favor of shipping Sam Bradford?

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