Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Curious Case of Clinton's Shoulder

"The Falcons sent former first-round tailback T.J. Duckett to Washington. At worst, the Broncos will receive two draft choices from Washington -- third- and fourth-round picks -- and those picks could escalate based on a complicated formula."-ESPN.com

"The Redskins sent a 2007 third-round draft pick to Denver as part of the deal, according to the Associated Press, and the Broncos sent disgruntled receiver Ashley Lelie to the Falcons as part of the deal."-The Washington Post

And so the plot thickens. Why are the Racists trading a high draft pick for T.J. Duckett? I mean, he's a decent change of pace back, but he's not worth a third round pick, let alone a third AND fourth round pick to a team starting Clinton Portis and with Ladell Betts and Rock Cartwright as backups. Then again, Duckett is worth the picks if Clinton Portis isn't in the equation.

So does this trade imply that Portis' injury is worse than the Racists are letting on? Does it mean that he won't be playing in the opener against the Vikings? That would definately be nice, considering that he is their offense. T.J. Duckettcan't carry an offense like Portis can, and that's the way the Racists' offense is designed--Portis softens up the defense so their speedy wide recievers can get open enough for even Brunell to hit them. And it works. If you subtract Portis and replace him with a less dominant back, (i.e. the slower Duckett and 3.1 yards per carry average last year), it isn't going to work nearly as well, as we've seen this preseason.

[Editer's Note: You can find logins and passwords for washingtonpost.com at bugmenot.com]

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