Rumors surfaced Monday that a couple of Pro Bowl offensive tackles could be on the move.
Both Cleveland Browns tackle Joe Thomas and San Francisco 49ers tackle Joe Staley were reportedly on the trading block. But their coaches both dismissed any trade rumors.
Hue Jackson made his point loud and clear during his Monday press conference: The Browns aren’t sending Thomas anywhere.
“We. Are. Not. Going. To. Trade. Joe. Thomas.” — Hue Jackson
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) October 24, 2016
Meanwhile, Kelly was stunned to hear talk that his five-time Pro Bowl tackle was being shopped.
“That’s news to me,” Kelly said, according to Cam Inman. “Nobody’s had any discussions with me about Joe being traded. We need Joe here.”
Of course, Jackson and Kelly aren’t close to winning anything in their first seasons with their respective teams. The Browns are safely in the AFC North cellar at 0-7 and the 49ers are 1-6 and losers of six straight games. Both teams probably could get some valuable assets back for Thomas and Staley, and there are plenty of contenders desperately seeking help along the trenches.
Thomas and Staley both could be difference-makers for teams pushing for a Super Bowl run. A team looking to win right now might be willing to overpay for a reliable blocker. They could give the Browns or 49ers an offer they’d be silly to refuse, so take what Jackson and Kelly are saying with a grain of salt.
We’ll learn if Jackson and/or Kelly were being truthful as the league’s Nov. 1 trade deadline approaches.