NFL Trade Rumors: 3 reasons why the Detroit Lions desperately need Pittsburgh Steelers WR James Washington

Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cincinnati Bengals
Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cincinnati Bengals
Bethany Cohen

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver James Washington approached the team on Friday asking for a trade. The former second-round draft pick out of Oklahoma State has played the last three seasons with the Steelers.

However, due to lack of playing time during his tenure with the Steelers and apparently so far this preseason as well, Washington would like to be traded elsewhere so that he can have an opportunity to play more.

Despite getting limited game time for the team, Washington has been a reliable receiver for the Steelers. But with JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool all ahead of him on the team's depth chart, his playing time has continued to dwindle.

Where and when the Steelers decide to trade James Washington is still unknown. But one thing is for sure that the team will likely get a reliable wide receiver who is able to get downfield when the need be.

One of the many teams that could be interested in being a trade partner for Washington is the Detroit Lions. With Jared Goff now under center, what could Washington do for the new-look Lions? On that note, here are three reasons why the Lions could benefit by acquiring Pittsburgh Steelers WR James Washington.

#1 The departure of veteran wide receivers

Besides the trade of Matthew Stafford to the Los Angeles Rams in exchange for Jared Goff, the Lions also parted ways with most of their wide receivers. Kenny Golladay, Danny Amendola, Marvin Jones Jr. and Jamal Agnew are no longer on the roster.

The Lions should give Goff a reliable wide receiver that he has been used to working with. James Washington could be that guy. Along with rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown and Breshad Perriman, Washington would help elevate the Lions' wide receiving room.

#2 Speedy slot receiver

James Washington's speed has allowed him to be an accurate and dependable slot receiver when he has seen playing time in Pittsburgh. His ability to track and get where his quarterback needs him to be has made him clutch for the team.

Washington has over 1,300 receiving yards and nine touchdowns with the Steelers in his three seasons with the team. That could greatly increase if he becomes a starter.

#3 Affordability

James Washington is entering the final year of his rookie contract. Clearly, he doesn't believe he will play enough to get a significant contract extension, or if one at all, with the Steelers.

If the Lions were to trade for James Washington, the remaining salary on his contract would be just over $1 million. For a wide receiver, that could potentially be a WR 1; that is economical.

In exchange for Washington, the Lions would likely only have to send draft picks, and likely no higher than a third-round one considering that Washington played just 44% of the snaps in 2020.

Edited by Bhargav

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