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Jay Cutler-Kyle Orton trade begot key draft picks all over NFL

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The 2009 trade that sent Jay Cutler to the Chicago Bears and Kyle Orton to the Denver Broncos -- which took place six years ago today -- was considered a big one at the time, having set up the Broncos with a pair of extra first-round picks and the Bears with a quarterback in whom they eventually invested a mammoth long-term contract. But the deal also created a ripple effect, through subsequent trades and acquisitions, that was felt all over the league in the form of some of the NFL's most famous players -- and one who became infamous.


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If Cutler and Orton were the roots, the branches grew everywhere, including names like Dez Bryant, Demaryius Thomas, Devin McCourty, Tim Tebow, Mike Wallace, Aaron Hernandez and others.

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A look at how this trade reverberated:

1. Broncos turn pick into two WRs, Tebow

Chicago gave up a 2010 first-round pick in the deal, which Denver dealt to San Francisco, which used that pick (No. 11 overall) to pick up offensive tackle Anthony Davis, who has started all 71 games of his career with the 49ers. Denver also got pick No. 113 in the deal.

This is where things get crazy. Denver moved down to the No. 13 pick in the trade with San Francisco, then moved down again to No. 24 in a deal with the Philadelphia Eagles. When Thomas was available at No. 22, Denver packaged No. 24 and the No. 113 pick it had gotten from San Francisco to draft him, acquiring a legitimate star who has roughly averaged 100 catches, 1,500 yards and 12 touchdowns over the last three seasons. As well, Denver got two third-round picks in the trade with Philadelphia. One was used on Eric Decker. The other was packaged with some other picks to allow Denver to draft Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Tim Tebow, who flashed with one remarkable playoff season before being jettisoned a year later.

2. Aaron Hernandez to Pats

The recipient of that No. 113 choice Denver gave up to get Thomas? The New England Patriots, who used it on none other than tight end Aaron Hernandez, who briefly paired with Rob Gronkowski as the game's dominant tight end duo before a murder charge derailed his pro career.

3. Trades allow Cowboys to land Bryant

As for the No. 24 pick that New England got from Denver, that was dealt to the Dallas Cowboys, who used it on star wide receiver Dez Bryant.

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4. Pats draft star safety

New England might have traded the pick Dallas used for Dez Bryant, but things didn't work out so bad for the Patriots, either. They moved down to Dallas' pick at No. 27, and got one of the game's top safeties in Devin McCourty.

5. Steelers end up with deep-threat WR

The Broncos also got a 2009 third-round pick in the trade that was traded to the Steelers, who used it to pick wide receiver Mike Wallace No. 84 overall. Wallace became an explosive downfield threat in Pittsburgh and, now with the Minnesota Vikings, is approaching 6,000 career yards and 50 career touchdowns.

6. Broncos' No. 18 pick fails to pan out

With all that star power flowing from one deal, oddly enough, the most prized pick Denver got from Chicago for Cutler didn't impact the league as much as any of them. Denver also got the No. 18 pick of the 2009 draft, which resulted in defensive end Robert Ayers. Ayers has been a backup player since 2012 and is now with the New York Giants.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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