It was announced earlier this week that Carson Wentz, the one-time almost-MVP winner, was traded to the Washington Commanders for a slew of draft picks.
This news came amid an NFL media frenzy, which included nine-time Pro Bowler and Super Bowl Champ Russel Wilson’s move to the Broncos. It also included four-time MVP winner Aaron Rodgers’ decision to stay in Green Bay.
So while some teams were getting bonafide stars added to their rosters, Commanders fans were left with a 29-year old QB that, quite frankly, isn’t much better than what they already have.
But before Washington fans even had a chance to react to the news, sportsbooks across the country decided to dig the team’s hole a bit deeper.
Carson Wentz gives no boost to Commanders futures
You see, the minute that the Wentz trade was announced, the future Super Bowl odds for the Washington Commanders didn’t improve. At the best, they remained the same.
Trades are supposed to make your Super Bowl futures move – but only in the right direction.
For example, when Russel Wilson got traded to the Broncos, the Denver team’s odds shrunk from +2500 to +1200 at one sportsbook.
But when we look at the Commanders’ odds pre and post-trade, they tell a different story.
At Caesars Sportsbook, for example, the Commanders’ Super Bowl futures didn’t budge. Before the trade, they were 60-1 to hoist Vince Lombardi Trophy.
After the Carson Wentz trade? They remain +6000.
It’s the same story at FanDuel, another top Virginia sportsbook. The Commanders were 50-1 before the trade and remain 50-1 today.
It was even more striking at WynnBET. There, the Super Bowl chances actually worsened. Before the trade, Washington’s Super Bowl odds were listed at +6000. Afterward? +7500.
So even in the eyes of the oddsmakers, whose job it is to evaluate teams and adjust their odds accordingly, this Wentz trade does nothing for the Commanders. To make things even worse, Washington agreed to pay the full $28 million that is owed to Wentz this year, which includes a $5 million roster bonus due next week.
Personally, I feel bad for Washington fans. They’ve gone through two name changes in just as many years. They’ve also now given away valuable draft capital for a guy whom they practically already have in Taylor Heinicke.
Famous bad trades in sports history
If it’s any consolation for Commanders fans, they should know that they are not alone. If there were a bad trade support group, they would be one among many.
But who knows? Maybe Wentz will come out next year and look like the 2017 version of himself. Until that happens, though, I’ll save the Commanders a seat next to the 1920 Red Sox and the 1992 Falcons.
To ease the pain even more for the Commanders, I figured we can take a look at some of the worst trades in sports history. While I don’t think this Wentz trade will ever even come close to this list, it will at least give Commanders fans some perspective.
Red Sox trade Babe Ruth for … a musical?
We’ve all heard of the Curse of the Bambino, but how it originated may surprise you. In 1920 the Boston Red Sox traded Babe Ruth to Yankees for $100,000 – and a $300,000 loan to finance the “No, No, Nanette” musical.
The show would proceed to flop while Babe went on to hit 659 homers for the Yankees and win four World Series.
The Hornets unknowingly trade away Kobe Bryant
The day before the 1996 NBA Draft, the Charlotte Hornets traded away their 13th overall pick to the Los Angeles Lakers for aging center Vlade Divac. The Lakers then turned that pick into Kobe Bryant, who had famously won five championships with the Lakers.
Divac played just two seasons with the Hornets before joining the Kings in 1998.
The Falcons give up on Brett Favre
The Falcons traded rookie QB Brett Favre to the Packers for a first-round draft pick in 1991. Team officials seemingly couldn’t care less about Favre, stashing him as a third-string QB at the time of the trade.
Favre went on to win three MVP awards and a Super Bowl ring with the Packers. He will also go down as one of the best to ever do it.
Sonics say goodbye to Scottie Pippen
The Sonics traded Scottie Pippen, their fifth overall pick in the draft, to the Bulls in exchange for Olden Polynice, a second-round pick, and the option to switch first-round picks in 1989.
If you’re scratching your head looking at Olden Polynice’s name, don’t worry – so am I.
Polynice had a long, 15-year career, but never really did anything of note.
Pippen, on the other hand? Well, do I even have to tell you?
Boston Blunders again
I really don’t mean to keep picking on the Red Sox, but they make it so, so easy.
In 1990 they traded away future Hall of Famer Jeff Bagwell to the Astros for reliever Larry Anderson.
Anderson went on to pitch only 22 innings for the Sox while Bagwell won Rookie of the Year, the 1994 MVP, and has his name enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
So there you go, Commanders fans. Yes, the Wentz trade stinks right now. But just take a look at all these trades that came before it.
Sure, you may be paying your QB five times what he’s worth – but at least you didn’t trade away the next Patrick Mahomes for the rights to a Broadway flop.