The playoff picture is gradually starting to emerge as the 2017 NFL season continues, and the temptation for quick fixes via trade is prescient as teams battle for division and conference supremacy.
There has already been notable movement with the New Orleans Saints’ decision to trade Adrian Peterson to the Arizona Cardinals
The Peterson deal has done nothing to silence the trade rumors around the league. With that in mind, here is a look at some of the buzz involving the Peterson aftermath, San Francisco 49ers running back Carlos Hyde and Saints linebacker Hau’oli Kikaha.
The Cardinals landed Peterson, but Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reported they had to “beat out” the Baltimore Ravens, who were also interested in the running back’s services.
Baltimore’s interest makes sense considering Kenneth Dixon underwent season-ending surgery for a meniscus tear and the team put Danny Woodhead on injured reserve with a hamstring injury. What’s more, Terrance West is currently out with a calf injury.
As a result, Alex Collins led the team with 74 rushing yards in Sunday’s overtime loss to the Chicago Bears.
Peterson looked nothing like his old self with the Saints when he was splitting time with Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara and failed to gain more than 33 rushing yards in a single game. However, it took little time for the seven-time Pro Bowler and former league MVP to find his footing as a featured back in Arizona, with 134 rushing yards and two touchdowns in a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday.
That version of Peterson would have provided an immediate boost for a Baltimore offense in need of healthy bodies in the AFC North race.
49ers Reportedly Making Calls Regarding Hyde
Peterson may not be the only primary running back traded this season.
Benjamin Allbright of AM 1340 in Denver reported the 49ers “received and made calls” about their starting running back. The rumors were apparently prevalent enough for head coach Kyle Shanahan to call them “absolutely 100 percent false” after his team’s 26-24 loss to Washington on Sunday, per Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee.
Shanahan made waves regarding Hyde after San Francisco’s Week 5 loss to the Indianapolis Colts because he kept the starter on the sideline for extended stretches in the second half. Hyde finished with eight carries for 11 yards compared to Matt Breida’s 10 carries, and Shanahan explained the discrepancy as the backup having the “hot hand,” per Barrows.
A Hyde trade would give the rookie Breida more time, and it would also allow the 49ers to receive something in return for the starter considering he is set to be an unrestricted free agent after the 2017 campaign, per Spotrac.
Hyde has gone through an up-and-down tenure with the 49ers. He struggled to remain on the field with seven games in 2015 but tallied career-highs with 988 rushing yards and nine total touchdowns in 13 games last year.
Just this season alone has been inconsistent, with the performance against the Colts juxtaposed against 124 rushing yards against the Seattle Seahawks and two touchdowns against the Los Angeles Rams.
He bailed himself out with two scores against Washington but had just 28 yards on 13 carries as potential trade piece.