Wednesday, November 11, 2009
By Ivan Carter
A question for Redskins fans: if you could do the 2004 Champ Bailey for Clinton Portis trade over again, would you? To me, it's pretty much one of those deals that's been a wash for both teams. Bailey has been one of the best corners in the game for the Broncos while Portis has been a very productive, if unspectacular, back for the 'Skins. The big difference, as of this writing, is that Bailey appears to have plenty of good football left in him while Portis is clearly nearing the end of his career as a go-to back.
A few things to consider about the trade and the players before you weigh in with an opinion:
1) The deal wasn't totally man-for-man; the Redskins also sent a second-round pick Denver's way. The Broncos used the pick to take running back Tatum Bell of Oklahoma State. He had a couple of good seasons for the Broncs and is now out of the NFL.
2) At the time, the Broncos were in the process of proving that they could plug just about any back into Mike Shanahan's system and succeed, and seriously needed a cornerback (the franchise had gone 18 seasons without a Pro Bowl corner). Conversely, the Redskins were coming off a 2003 season during which the forgettable Trung Canidate had been the leading rusher (600 yards).
3) Both players have been good. Portis is second to John Riggins on the 'Skins all-tine rushing list, and memorably came up huge during the team's run to the playoffs in 2005. Bailey has been to eight Pro Bowls and is generally considered to be one of the best in the game at his position (though he was beaten repeatedly the other night by the Steelers - that happens to the best of them though).
Your thoughts on the BaileyPortis deal? (For more on Champ's Return to DC, check out Dave Elfin's piece from The Washington Times.)
A couple of other 'Skins nuggets:
- Albert Haynesworth has generally been doing his thing this season. But he can't -- just can't -- jump offsides as he did on that 4th-and-1 near the end of Atlanta's first possession Sunday. Everyone in the world could see that Matt Ryan was simply trying to entice such a penalty.
- My view of the whole DeAngelo HallMike Smith thing is that it was much ado about little. Smith came to the defense of quarterback after a late hit by LaRon Landry, and Hall came over to defend Landry, who was surrounded by Falcons. No punches were thrown, and no real bad damage was done. Now, I would suggest to Hall that he would be better off showing toughness by making a tackle in a key situation this season, rather than talking postgame smack about the other team's head coach but hey, that's just me.
- I've been begging for more Marko Mitchell all season and on Sunday, the rookie had a couple of catches in limited action. Good. Let's see more of 84.
- You have to feel for second-year corner Chris Horton, was placed on injured reserve Wednesday with a bad toe injury. I came away from an interview with the young fella this summer very impressed. Good luck rehabbing Chris. Come back strong next season.
- It continues to baffle the mind that the 'Skins struggle so badly to find offensive linemen. Consider the 7-1 Vikings, who are starting a rookie second round pick at right tackle (Phil Loadholt), a second-year sixth-rounder at center (John Sullivan) and an undrafted free agent at right guard (Anthony Herrera). Or the 6-2 Patriots, who appear to have seamlessly found a replacement for injured veteran left tackle Matt Light in rookie Sebastian Vollmer, a second-rounder.