- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 18, 2002

The Washington Redskins are considering a trade of their top draft pick to the Jacksonville Jaguars for the No.9 selection overall and a chance to draft Oregon quarterback Joey Harrington.
Washington vice president of football operations Joe Mendes said the Redskins are shopping their No.18 selection in Saturday's NFL Draft for a marquee player or several later selections. However, Harrington appears to be the Redskins' top desire.
Any trade isn't expected to take place before Jacksonville or perhaps the Kansas City Chiefs at No.8 are ready to pick. The Chiefs may take Harrington, and the Cincinnati Bengals might trade up from No.10 to get him.
Harrington's status is so tentative that he declined an invitation from the NFL to join five prominent players at the draft in New York, according to ESPN.com. Harrington will watch with family in Eugene, Ore., rather than risk a first-round free fall before a national audience.
Meanwhile, Washington's chances to sign Philadelphia Eagles middle linebacker Jeremiah Trotter increased yesterday when the Houston Texans traded for Buffalo Bills weakside linebacker Jay Foreman, who can play inside in the Texans' 3-4 defense.
Washington now appears to be the front-runner for Trotter over the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings with a multi-year deal that averages nearly $4million. The Packers postponed Trotter's visit today after deciding that the Redskins' offer was more than they were willing to pay. Vikings coach Mike Tice said reports that his team was interested were "absolutely untrue" and that only preliminary talks had occurred.
Trotter's agent, Jimmy Sexton, declined comment. Mendes routinely declines to discuss ongoing negotiations. However, a deal is now expected to be reached within days. Acquiring Harrington would be costly and would further strain the Redskins' $2million salary cap margin.
The Redskins probably would have to trade their first- and second-round picks this season and a high pick next year to entice the Jaguars into a trade. Washington doesn't have a third-round pick as part of a 2001 trade for former coach Marty Schottenheimer, meaning Harrington would be Washington's only player from the draft's opening day.
Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin doesn't want to drop too far in the draft in order to ensure he can still land Texas offensive tackle Mike Williams or Tennessee defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth. Neither player is likely to be available at the No.18 spot, so the Redskins would have to overcompensate the Jaguars to entice them to alter their draft strategy.
"You're not going to move too far down, because no one can get up there unless someone is willing to give you a great chunk of their draft," Coughlin said. "The value line is going to tell you exactly what that team can and can't do in terms of trying to make a fair deal."
Kansas City wants to draft North Carolina defensive tackle Ryan Sims but will take Harrington if Sims is already gone, as many mock drafts indicate he will be. The Chiefs already have resisted several chances to move up in the draft but are willing to move down if Sims is taken.
The Redskins' deal for Chicago Bears quarterback Shane Matthews is seemingly contingent on Harrington. The Redskins still could trade a late-round pick for Matthews if they fail to get Harrington but probably would pass if they draft the latter. Coach Steve Spurrier remains strongly supportive of quarterback Danny Wuerffel.
If the Redskins fail to get Harrington, they'll hope for one of the draft's four premier defensive tackles. However, many mock drafts have the quartet gone before the Redskins pick. Washington then would consider a receiver or guard. Colorado guard Anthony Gurode is well liked by some team officials. Florida receiver Reche Caldwell is a possible second-round choice.

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