(Aug. 22, 2006) -- The last two weeks of the preseason are when games are played and, more importantly, rosters are refined.
There are always surprise cuts, unexpected trades and intriguing moves that allow teams to make their final transactions before the season kicks off.
This summer, one of the biggest could come out of Pittsburgh -- and wind up in Philadelphia.
One NFL general manager said the Pittsburgh Steelers have been shopping running back Duce Staley, trying to see if any team would be willing to trade for him before the team would have to release him. It makes sense. Pittsburgh's backfield is chock full with Willie Parker entrenched as a starter, Verron Haynes as his backup, and running backs John Kuhn, Brandon Jones and Cedric Humes also vying for roster spots.
Pittsburgh's depth at the position makes it possible for it to deal Staley. Yet if Staley is sent packing from Pittsburgh either through a trade or a release, one possible landing spot would seem to be the Philadelphia Eagles who, to date, have not had any trade conversations with the Steelers. Should Staley be released, and it is within the realm of possibility, the Eagles could be on the list of teams interested in his services.
In recent seasons, the Eagles have made a habit out of bringing back longtime contributors and fan favorites. They did it with defensive end Hugh Douglas and linebackers Jeremiah Trotter and Shawn Barber. Now they could wind up doing the same with Staley, who built his name and reputation in Philadelphia. The move would generate big cheers from Eagles fans and, even more significant, from its players.
The Eagles are in the market for a big back and, earlier this week, visited with free agent Stephen Davis. No deal was reached there, but it doesn't mean the Eagles won't be looking for another bigger back that could help the team. The most logical fit would be Staley, who could wind up cut loose in Pittsburgh in the next two weeks.