Both of these trades are remembered as being rather awful events, but they're different enough. Fred Dean was traded during his prime and would be the catalyst for a championship. Lance Alworth had already had an incredible, Hall of Fame caliber career when he was shipped out of town. Voting for the Alworth trade would seem to be more a matter of being upset with how a legend was treated whereas voting for the Dean trade is more about management being cheap and costing themselves any chance at a championship.
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(2) Fred Dean was traded mid-season in 1981 due to a contract dispute. In 1981, Dean had earned $67,500 and as a future Hall of Famer in the prime of his career was due for a raise. The San Diego Chargers ownership (who were notoriously unwilling to renegotiate and had previously traded away the great John Jefferson) wasn't interested and sent Dean to the 49ers for some draft picks. The Chargers defense was instantly much worse and the 49ers' instantly much better. Fred Dean would win the UPI NFC Defensive Player of the Year award and his new team would win the Lombardi Trophy. The Chargers, meanwhile, would still manage to make it to the AFC Championship Game, but lose. Dean's absence was notable. He would not be meaningfully replaced until the Chargers drafted Leslie O'Neal five years later.
(3) Lance Alworth was the first San Diego Charger as well as the first AFL player to be inducted in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. His number, 19, was retired by the team in 2005. He was selected to the AFL All-Time Team and the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team and is the only player to make both. Alworth played nine incredible seasons for the San Diego Chargers and is arguably the greatest offensive player to play for a team that has had some incredible offenses in its history. On May 19, 1971 Bambi was traded to the Dallas Cowboys for Tony Liscio, Pettis Norman and Ron East. Liscio would never play a game for the Chargers and the latter two were good but certainly not great players. Alworth would go on to win Super Bowl VI with the Cowboys. He would later be quoted as saying that his two receptions in the Super Bowl (one of which was a touchdown) were the two most important of his career.
Which was worse?
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