5 Austin Ekeler Trade Destinations

Austin Ekeler Trade

Los Angeles Chargers running back Austin Ekeler has requested a trade following stalled contract talks. Originally entering the league as an undrafted free agent, the six-year NFL veteran has worked his way to being one of the best dual-threat runners in the league. While Ekeler is on the older side by running back standards, he’s showing no signs of slowing down, and he should be able to find a few interested teams.

Note that this list was written on morning on Tuesday, March 14th, right in the heat of free agency. The NFL market changes rapidly this time of the year, so there is a chance that a few of these teams will no longer be in the market for Austin Ekeler if they sign a big-name free agent. Also keep in mind that it takes two to tango, so we also have to consider to whom the Chargers would be willing to trade Ekeler. For example, the Denver Broncos could desperately use Ekeler’s skill set, especially considering Javonte Williams might be seriously injured, but the Chargers would never trade Ekeler to a division rival.

Top 5 Austin Ekeler Trade Destinations, Ranked

1. Philadelphia Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles will likely lose Miles Sanders to free agency, which means this team will need a new top option out of the backfield. Kenneth Gainwell has shown plenty of promise in small samples, but Philadelphia probably wants a more experienced starter. Austin Ekeler would be the perfect trade fit, as the running back’s ability to make plays on all three downs would perfectly complement Hurts’ insane talent as both a runner and a passer. With A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, and Dallas Goedert rounding out the skill positions, this offense should once again be among the best in football.

2. Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears have been arguably the most active team in football over the past week, so why shouldn’t they go and make another wild trade? Over the past couple of days, Chicago has bolstered their wide receiver room with D.J. Moore, but they could still use another weapon to make easier for Justin Fields. Austin Ekeler would be the ideal backfield companion, especially since David Montgomery is still a free agent (as of this writing). The jury is still out on Fields, but he has shown enough promise to earn a third year under center. The best to ensure he turns into Chicago’s long-awaited franchise quarterback is to give him as many weapons as possible, and there aren’t many receiving backs more reliable than Austin Ekeler.

3. New Orleans Saints

The New Orleans Saints do not believe in rebuilding, which means that the team is likely searching for a new running back to replace Alvin Kamara. No scheme targets the running back position more than the Saints, which means you need a running back that can catch the ball and make plays happen after the catch. Needless to say, Austin Ekeler is one of the best in the league at this, and he shouldn’t cost too much in a trade.

4. Baltimore Ravens

We are now moving into the unlikely teams, mainly because it’s hard to imagine the Chargers trading Ekeler within the conference. That being said, if the Baltimore Ravens outbid everyone, Ekeler would slide right into this offense. J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards are both major health risks, and neither player looked quite right last year, and the rest of the depth chart isn’t looking too great. Head coach Jim Harbaugh prefers to use multiple running backs, so having two starting-caliber players in Ekeler and Dobbins would be ideal for this team.

5. Miami Dolphins

The Miami Dolphins are clearly all-in on Tua Tagovailoa and are planning on maximizing his rookie window. The team recently traded for Jalen Ramsey, leaving only one real hole on the roster: running back. The Dolphins had an underwhelming group of runners last year, and the top two options are currently free agents. Ekeler is considerably better than Raheem Mostert and Jeff Wilson, and his dual-threat nature makes him a perfect fit for Mike McDaniel.

Main Photo: Corey Perrine – USA Today Sports