First call: Raiders may be willing to trade picks for Antonio Brown; Le’Veon Bell to Eagles? | TribLIVE.com
Breakfast With Benz

First call: Raiders may be willing to trade picks for Antonio Brown; Le’Veon Bell to Eagles?

Tim Benz
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Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown and running back Le’Veon Bell celebrate on the sideline after a Steelers touchdown on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017.

In “First Call” for Monday, it’s your daily update on Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown. The latest on the Capitals and the Columbus trade front. And there’s something fishy in college baseball.


Oakland picks for A.B.?

At “Breakfast With Benz,” we’ve pointed out on a few occasions that the Raiders make sense as a potential destination for Antonio Brown, should the Steelers follow through on their plan to trade their troublesome wide receiver.

One of the reasons for that rationale is that Oakland has 11 picks in the seven-round 2019 draft, including three in the first round.

And the team is willing to trade some of those selections.

Gruden said on “The Game Plan” podcast that general manager Mike Mayock is “gonna be on the phones quite a bit, not only with (picks 24 and 27), who knows, we may move up with the No. 4 pick, we may move back with that pick. We’ll see how it all unfolds.”

Gruden also said this regarding the Raiders’ ability to spend in free agency given their cap space: “You don’t want to spend all your money that you have on a few free agents, you want to try to keep some of that money available in case a trade might develop during the draft.”

Hmm. Maybe they are setting aside some cap room for a $22 million wide receiver?


Philly in the fray?

Meanwhile, on the Le’Veon Bell front, that team across the state may be in the mix to bid on the free agent’s services.

When Bell went on social media to shamelessly beg for attent… uh, I mean … ask his loyal fans where he should go in free agency, he got this response from an Eagles fan.

That caught the eyes of Philadelphia defensive lineman Chris Long.

Back in early October, Bell told ESPN.com that the Eagles might be a good match if he could hit the market as a free agent after the 2018 season concluded.


Did someone say ‘eagle?’

This was a different kind of baseball game delay courtesy of mother nature.

During a college contest between Jacksonville State and Jacksonville University, a bald eagle and an osprey started fighting over a fish as they flew over the stadium.

The fish fell into the middle of the outfield. A trainer ran out to grab the smelly carcass and removed it before the birds of prey started to divebomb the players in an effort to grab it.


Panarin’s prospects

While the Blue Jackets were busy gobbling up a lot of talent, they still may be trying to deal star forward Artemi Panarin.

Columbus acquired forwards Matt Duchene and Ryan Dzingel from Ottawa in two trades over the weekend.

That could be a push to enhance the roster before Panarin and goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky test the free-agent market this summer. Or, they could be seen as a buffer in case Panarin is traded.

Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen tried to tamp down speculation of a Panarin deal during a conference call with the media.

“We’re serious about winning, and Artemi Panarin is a huge part of our team,” Kekalainen said. “It would take a lot not only in the long term but in the short term as well to make that kind of trade. We’re not trading Artemi Panarin for draft picks.”

The trade deadline is Monday at 3 p.m. As of Monday morning, Columbus was in front of both Carolina and the Penguins for the last automatic playoff spot in the Metro Division.


Metro madness

Speaking of the Metropolitan Division, there was chaos in Washington yesterday. The Capitals won a wild 6-5 game over the Rangers on this overtime goal by Evgeny Kuznetsov.

That pulls the Caps to within two points of the division-leading Islanders, who have 79 points.

Sunday also marked Carl Hagelin’s first home game in a Capitals jersey.

That just doesn’t look right.

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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