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Two different trade options that the Dallas Cowboys should consider, including a tight end and a safety

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Two first-round picks from the 2017 NFL Draft could be available for a trade.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images

All of the attention is on the NFL Draft, but that has not stopped teams from engaging in trade talks between players. The headline-grabbing news on Tuesday was the New England Patriots sending the recently un-retired Rob Gronkowski to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, reuniting Gronk with quarterback Tom Brady.

Washington offensive tackle Trent Williams has often been a subject of trade discussions, while Dallas has been rumored to be interested in star safety (Jamal Adams) or a slot receiver (Christian Kirk or Marquise Goodwin).

On the subject of trade rumors, tight end and safety are two positions that many believe that the Dallas Cowboys will target at some point during the draft. On the other hand, it is a weak tight end class and the Cowboys do not have a history of prioritizing the safety position early in the draft.

So, why not try adding talent at those two positions through trade?

A potential tight end could be on the market.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New York Giants Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images

Tampa Bay, of course, just traded for Gronk. The Buccaneers also signed tight end Cameron Brate to a six-year extension that includes $18 million guaranteed. Therefore, especially with already having a wide receiver duo with the talent of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin on the outside for Brady, it is reasonable to assume that the Buccaneers would be willing to part ways with 2017 first-round pick O.J. Howard.

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk wrote that Gronk’s arrival in Tampa “sets the stage for O.J. Howard’s departure”.

Howard, whose name emerged in trade discussions last year, now becomes a likely casualty of Gronkowski’s addition to a roster that also includes tight end Cameron Brate.

Like Gronkowski, Howard is under contract for one more year. Trading Howard before May 3 would allow his new team to pick up the fifth-year option that goes with a first-round contract.

Howard was reportedly nearly traded to Washington, showing the Bucs have had talks with parting ways with the former Alabama Crimson Tide star. The 19th overall selection of the 2017 draft is reportedly “not happy” as well.

Howard has had an up-and-down NFL career to this point. He has over 1,400 yards and has scored 12 touchdowns in his three seasons thus far on the professional level. Still, many expected more out from the 6-foot-6, 242-pound pass catcher.

Perhaps a change of scenery will give new life to the talented tight end. Could a day three selection get the deal done?

A former first-round safety not named Jamal Adams has been rumored to be on the block.

Indianapolis Colts v Pittsburgh Steelers Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Jamal Adams is the name that has peaked many Cowboys fans’ interest when discussing potential safety trade targets, but he may not be the only former first-round defensive back that could be on the move.

Malik Hooker, taken nine picks after Adams and four ahead of Howard in the 2017 draft class, is being rumored to potentially be on the trading block. The Athletic’s Michael Lombardi mentioned the former Ohio State Buckeyes defensive back as a player that is available for trade.

Lombardi is not the only connected source reporting that the Colts may be interested in parting ways with Hooker, as Dov Kleiman reported the same thing and also noted that former Florida Gators corner Quincy Wilson is on the trade block as well. It appears that Indianapolis is focused on moving in a different direction in the secondary.

The Cowboys appear to be interested in adding a centerfield safety to the team, and Hooker is just that. The ballhawking defensive back has struggled with injuries during his early career, but the 24-year old oozes talent.

As the 2017 first round pick of the Colts, the 24 year old safety has shown flashes of his enormous potential coming out of Ohio State—as a bonafide ballhawk at times.

However, he has struggled with consistency in coverage (sometimes ending up in no-man’s land) and has been plagued a bit by injuries—having never started a full 16 games in a season for the Colts yet.

Hooker had 51 tackles, 3 passes defensed, and 2 interceptions in 13 starts during 2019.

Stephen Holder covers the Colts for The Athletic and reported that he has heard that the trade rumors about Hooker have come from teams inquiring about him, not the other way around. Still, it seems as if the Colts are, at the very least, listening.

Dallas wants versatile players on their defense that can create havoc and force turnovers. When healthy, Hooker fits that description. Could the Cowboys turn their attention to Hooker?