Hobson's Choice: Trading season

Hey, I have a trade idea and a FA signing that I think would help improve the team, and wanna know if it's realistic and what you think. With the Eagles franchising Corey Simon today, what are the chances of a Rudi for Corey trade? It makes since for both teams. The Eagles have an average running game at best and it was shown durring the super bowl. Westbrooke is a good back but I think Rudi would be a big upgrade for them. Corey would be a DT we need and would allow us to focus on over areas with our first pick.

Then, and I would only make the trade if this was a sure thing, I would sign Alexander the Great to come and run the ball. I haven't seen what he is asking for but He would be worth breaking the bank more then Rudi. I love Rudi but he's just a bruiser back, he's not a complete back like CP or LT. Just some thoughts.

**Ryan in the Nati

RYAN:**
Every trade imaginable is going to come spewing out now, but this isn't baseball. A franchise defensive tackle is theoretically worth more than a franchise running back, so the Eagles aren't going to trade for Johnson straight up. If they need a workman-like back so badly, they can get one on the first day of the draft rather than paying big bucks to one, plus giving up one of their best defensive players. (Remember, they got Westbrook in the third round.)

The Bengals would probably have a hard time now getting a second-rounder for Johnson like they did for Corey Dillon, just because Dillon had such a big year with more than 1,600 yards and a Super Bowl title. Plus, there are plenty of backs in the draft and in free-agency for teams on the lookout. For instance, the word is already out that the Jets' Lamont Jordan is a great fit with what Jon Gruden does in Tampa Bay.

But who says the Bengals want to give up Johnson?

If you trade him and don't get a running back in return, you've weakened yourself. You may not see Johnson as one of the NFL's top five running backs, but he is worth the $6.3 million this year because he is still a very good back and they don't have an answer yet on Chris Perry.

So trading for or signing a guy like Shaun Alexander doesn't make any sense, either, as long as Perry as in the picture. It would seem that this is why they drafted Perry. For this very reason. As insurance if they can't get something done with Johnson long term. This is a guy they should be viewing as a young Alexander. He's fast and can catch the ball and was selected in roughly the same part of the draft as Alexander. (Alexander went No. 19 in 2000 and Perry No. 26 in 2004.)

And word out of Hawaii this week is Alexander could very well be headed back to Seattle before free agency opens March 2.

You might not get a lot of long touchdown runs out of Johnson, but he's a winner and you can win it with him. Let's face it. It's not going to be easy. You need to price him right, but how do you line up next year with 361 of your 392 back-field carries gone?

What makes the most sense is trying to get something done with Johnson while also developing Perry. Given that no franchise free agent has sat out in the last eight years or so, you just have to do business thinking that Johnson isn't going to be the first.

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