View Full Version : Falcons still in talks to deal Duckett

08-22-2006, 06:10 AM
Updated: Aug. 22, 2006, 3:03 AM ET
Falcons still in talks to deal Duckett
By Len Pasquarelli

ATLANTA -- Despite losing one suitor when the New York Jets acquired Kevan Barlow from San Francisco on Sunday afternoon, the Atlanta Falcons on Monday evening continued trade discussions involving tailback T.J. Duckett, the subject of trade rumors for much of the offseason.

Several league sources said Monday that Falcons officials were discussing with several clubs a possible trade of the fifth-year veteran, and making progress on some fronts.

There were reports last week that the Falcons had fielded inquiries about Duckett from at least four teams. One of those clubs was definitely the Jets, but New York instead dealt for Barlow on Sunday, sending a fourth-round pick in the 2007 draft to the 49ers for the five-year veteran back.

Apparently, though, there is no shortage of interest in Duckett, who is having an excellent training camp and preseason. And while Falcons brass suggested Monday the team might retain Duckett for 2006, Atlanta is engaged in substantive trade talks on multiple fronts. One possible scenario, albeit a long shot, was said to be a three-team deal.

It is not known what kind of price tag Atlanta has set for Duckett, the Falcons' first-round choice in the 2002 draft, and a player clearly coveted by some tailback-needy franchises. The Falcons rejected a proposal by the Pittsburgh Steelers on draft weekend in April, and there were reports at the time that Atlanta wanted a third-round choice for him.

The Falcons are seeking a veteran wide receiver to fill the No. 3 spot, a vacancy that was created when Brian Finneran suffered a season-ending knee injury early in training camp. Atlanta likes its two young starters at the position, former first-round picks Michael Jenkins and Roddy White, but no one has stepped up to fill the void at the critical No. 3 spot. Coach Jim Mora acknowledged after Saturday's preseason loss at Green Bay that the Falcons "don't have" a proven third wide receiver right now.

In their trade discussions with the Jets, it was reported that Falcons officials were trying to acquire Justin McCareins, a five-year veteran who has lost his starting job in New York and who has clearly fallen out of favor with the new coaching staff there. The Falcons are also seeking a backup safety to bolster the position behind starters Lawyer Milloy and Chris Crocker.

Mora was particularly critical on Saturday of the performance of his backup safeties.

Duckett, 25, is not a good fit for the one-cut running game the Falcons emphasize and is viewed around the league more as a "downhill" runner. He is entering the final season of his original rookie contract, and will be eligible for unrestricted free agency next spring, and the Falcons stand the prospect of losing him and not receiving any compensation unless they trade him.

But dealing Duckett would leave Atlanta with no proven backup to starter Warrick Dunn. The team chose Jerious Norwood of Mississippi State in the third round of this year's draft. The rookie has been impressive at times, but it is difficult to ascertain at this point if he is ready to step into the primary backup role.

In two preseason outings, Duckett has rushed for 96 yards on 15 carries. The 96 yards are the sixth most in the NFL in the preseason and Duckett's healthy 6.4-yard average is second best among players with at least 15 rushing attempts.

The former Michigan State standout, chosen 18th overall in the 2002 draft, has carried 552 times for 2,175 yards and 31 touchdowns in 54 career appearances, including 14 starts. His best season was in 2002, when he ran for 779 yards and 11 touchdowns. As a backup, Duckett rushed for 500-plus yards in each of his first three seasons in the league, but dropped off to just 380 yards in 2005.

He has averaged nine rushing touchdowns over the last three seasons.

Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com.


08-22-2006, 06:14 AM
I guess we'll see what happens....I'm not overly optimistic...the Steelers dont have much of a history of player trading....:cool: :cool:

08-22-2006, 06:20 AM
I would be very, very surprised if the Steelers trade for Duckett.

08-22-2006, 06:24 AM
There is some talk that he might end up in Washington...since the skins have a thin WR corps...that might explain the "three team" scenerio

08-22-2006, 07:03 AM
For what it's worth............

"As expected, the Jets have contacted the Falcons about a potential trade for RB T.J. Duckett, according to an NFL source. If Duckett doesn't get hurt tonight against the Packers, a deal could be made in the coming days. Jets WR Justin McCareins could be used as trade bait. The Steelers also are interested in Duckett, a first-round pick of the Falcons in 2002." - (for the record this article is from August 19)


08-22-2006, 05:21 PM
I think T.J as Steeler would be a good look for both himself as well as us,.....his running style is perfectly suited for our guys up front. I like Duce,....but let's be honest,....he's nearing the twighlight of his career.
T. J's younger and i think would fulfill his potential with our organization. The Falcons run a west coast O,....that's no place for a back like Duckett. I think with Willie providing the "Home run" threat and T.J punishing Defenses between the tackles,....who's really gonna account for that ?
You can't stack the box,...because Ben will eat a D alive with Heath in the seam. And that's not even considering if Ced or Santonio can successfully stretch the field to free up Hines.
Long story short,....if we can make the trade happen,...get it done.

"Hail Caesar,....Hail the Black and Gold"

08-22-2006, 09:04 PM

Duckett was traded to the Skins.

08-22-2006, 09:27 PM

Duckett was traded to the Skins.
Probably not a good sign as to the recovery status of Clinton Portis.

Ashley Lelie being traded to the Falcons is interesting...it actually gives Vick a halfway decent option at receiver. That being said, I more or less expect him to be Peerless Price V 2.0 in Atlanta.

08-22-2006, 09:28 PM

Duckett was traded to the Skins.

"Damn it,....and we would have gotten away with a top three ground too,.....if it was for those pesky Redskins" LOL

"Hail Caesar,....Hail the Black and Gold"