I have to write about this because it's just too interesting (for the sake of conversation) to pass up, even though Chad Johnson rumor is more prevalent than Chad Johnson fact. Cinbengal posted yesterday afternoon that NFL Live reported that the Eagles were interested in Johnson. That was followed up by an ESPN report on NFL Live that Michael Smith said:
"I am hearing there is interest in Chad Johnson," Smith said. "Now there's been some back and forth as to whether or not he is officially on the market. I think everybody in Cincinnati has signed off on moving Chad Johnson except for owner Mike Brown. The Eagles could be in the picture. They have two first-round picks. They need a receiver."
Smith was the only guy in the media that said Houshmandzadeh was going to Seattle -- a day before it was actually announced. The Raiders apparently have interest too, who recently brought Jeremy Maclin in for a visit.
There has been a steep divide among Bengals fans here at CJ, on just how much the Bengals can get in return for Johnson if he's traded. With the 21st and 28th pick in the draft, maybe the Eagles give up a first. However, with 11 picks in the draft, we think the Eagles would want of our Sunday picks in return -- possibly our non-compensatory third-round pick (70th overall). I'm not sure the Eagles would hand off just a first-round pick for Johnson.
Either way, it all depends on how the Eagles (and other teams) view Johnson's 2008 season. If they believe it's an aberration, filled with injury, then maybe they'll offer something big. If they believe 2008 is a sign of things to come, with age slowing the healing process with a growing sense of entitlement, then most likely not.
UPDATE: I asked Jason, who heads up Bleeding Green Nation, what his thoughts were. "I honestly have no feeling as to whether they'd actually do this or not," Jason said. "But I will say that while he was on a local radio station a few weeks ago Eagles president Joe Banner said a reason they didn't go after a guy like TJ Houshmandzadeh is that they didn't want to make a move that would prevent them getting an elite WR should one come available. So, if we take him at his word it would seem that the Eagles probably would be interested in trading for Johnson."
Asked about a possible guess about an offer, Jason offered, "I'd say a 2nd and a 5th? Maybe a 2nd and a player?"
Note: In my juvenile protest of a grown man changing his last name to Ocho Cinco, I am going to call him Johnson until he leaves. That might piss off some of the apologist Johnson fans, but I really don't care.