Suggs and Green are competing for one spot behind Reuben Droughns. The other running back job belongs to rookie Jerome Harrison. Green is regarded as more of a first- and second-down back, and since Harrison is the third-down back the Browns would rather deal Suggs. Also, the Browns tried trading Green in 2005 and could not get a seventh-round pick for the 2002 first-round draft pick.
The problem facing the Browns now is Suggs has even less value than he did when they thought they had Jets cornerback Derrick Strait in the swap. Strait, a third-round pick in 2004, played in 21 games over two seasons without a start.
What the Browns need most is a center. They found no takers when they offered Suggs for one. The Jets failed Suggs because he had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in January and they did not like the way it was healing. Suggs missed 23 of 48 games with injuries over three seasons, but ironically he has been injury free this training camp. None of his missed games with the Browns involved a knee injury.
"I don't want to be traded," he said. "I'd like to stay in Cleveland. But if there are opportunities elsewhere I'd like to go after them. I'm never shaken in my ability. I know I can play, given the opportunity."
Neither Suggs nor Green was productive last season. Suggs carried eight times for 15 yards. Green rushed 20 times for 78 yards. The 2006 preseason has been more of the same, and now Suggs thinks the rest of the league regards him as damaged goods.
"I don't know what other teams may or may not do," Crennel said. "It always depends on what the need is. When you get into a need situation, some teams I know might need a running back and be willing to take a chance. Lee will play (the preseason game against Buffalo Aug. 26) and he'll do fine. Then, other teams may be more interested after that."
Suggs missed nine games as a rookie with a shoulder injury, three with a neck injury and three more with a toe injury in 2004 and two with an ankle injury plus six more with a thumb injury last season. He carried the ball only eight times for 15 yards in 2005.
When Suggs was healthy he produced. He rushed for 186 yards against the Bengals as a rookie in 2003 and finished 2004 with three straight 100-yard games.
"I wasn't here when that occurred," Crennel said. "I can only go by what I've seen. We have some depth at the position and that has more to do with it than anything else."