Standing pat Lions could lose Bailey to Denver

While the Detroit Lions stand pat with their offer of two second round picks for Washington Redskins corner Champ Bailey, two other potential suitors for Bailey's services have come forward and both have offered blockbuster deals to the Redskins.

(ALLEN PARK) - While the Detroit Lions stand pat with their offer of two second round picks for Washington Redskins corner Champ Bailey, two other potential suitors for Bailey's services have come forward and both have offered blockbuster deals to the Redskins.

The Denver Broncos appear ready to deal Pro Bowl running back Clinton Portis to Washington in exchange for Bailey and Washington's second round pick. Portis has two years remaining on his contract which is the reason Denver feels that they can ask for the second rounder from Washington. Bailey's has been tendered at the franchise player level for $6.8 million.

Some published reports say a deal could be struck by the end of this week between the two clubs.

The other suitor is the Seattle Seahawks who have offered running back Shawn Alexander to the Redskins in exchange for Bailey, in a straight up one-for-one deal, one of the rarest transactions seen lately in the league.

Sources say that Bailey is balking at the idea of being traded to the Pacific Northwest and threw cold water on the idea of signing a long-term deal with the Seahawks but isn't as adverse to going to Denver.

The same sources says that Bailey has re-signed himself to the fact that he might not be able to get to Detroit this year and that at least in going to Denver he's going to a team that has been in the mix to win a championship.

Detroit's Matt Millen, who has been one of the most high profile GMs in trade and free agent discussions spoke with the Redskins at the NFL combines in Indianapolis, but has been doing all in his power to put a damper on all the Bailey trade talks.

Millen appears set to hold the line at two #2's because he knows Bailey prefers Detroit and would be willing to sign a long term deal for less in Detroit than anywhere else. He apparently believes all the cards are in his favor and even if he doesn't land Bailey, he can parlay the #6 overall pick in the first round into some serious talent for Detroit.

Much of Millen's game plan appears to hang on the emergence of University of Southern California sophomore receiver Mike Williams potential entry into this year's draft. Williams would be one of the top players in the draft and make an already deep receiver pool that much deeper. NFL scouts say that the presence of Pittsburgh receiver Larry Fitzgerald, Texas standout Roy Williams and USC's Williams could be the best crop of receivers in NFL draft history.

The entry of the latter Williams pushes talent players further down the list so that the Lions could either select Williams or consensus All American safety Shawn Taylor of the University of Miami, or trade the pick for multiple picks later in round one allowing the Lions to get more than two players out of the first two rounds of a suddenly deep draft.

Arizona Cardinals head coach Dennis Green is among those who believe Williams is a top-five pick. "Coming here, I thought there were eight blue-chip players in this draft," said Green. "Now it looks like there are nine. If it's true that he's coming out, then certainly you've got to figure that he'll be a top-five pick."

While it appears Millen is in a "can't lose" position with the 6th pick, things have come up snake-eyes before for Detroit. When Detroit held the third pick they expected many potential suitors.

"Right now, as we're sitting there, we should have some options [to move down]. We've had calls and I've made contact with some people. They'll be the opportunity to do some things. But they probably won't be plentiful. They rarely are," Millen said at the time. He then insisted, "it's one thing to say we have a lot of interest. But your 'a lot' is not my 'a lot.' But there will be phone calls."

Instead, no one came forward with the trade package Detroit expected. After an internal debate, Detroit selected quarterback Joey Harrington of Oregon over Texas corner Quentin Jammer.


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