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Mailbag: Strategy with Harvey negotiations

8/24/2008

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

We need to talk.

I want an open and honest relationship.

I want to do these mailbag blog entries.

But I'm thin on questions. I see my compatriots in other divisions answering your queries all the time and I start to feel lonely and unloved. Have I upset you? Failed you? Or are people from the four AFC South teams just not mailbag types?

I once wrote that Houston fans lead the mail by a lot. Since then, you've about disappeared.

Titans fans are now the most frequent mailbaggers, Jags and Texans tie for second, Colts hardly to be found. In case you were wondering.

Here's the best of my slim pickings.

Want more? Make it happen with a visit here.

I'm off to Indianapolis this morning. I'll report back to you with my impressions of Lucas Oil Stadium this evening, then see what I see during Colts-Bills.

Jim in Nashville writes: If I were the Titans, I would offer Arizona a first round draft pick, Chris Henry( to give them some local flavor) and let them pick any two of the Titans receivers for Boldin!

Paul Kuharsky: This is a hugely popular question this week -- will the Titans make a play for Boldin? Sure, Boldin is an intriguing guy. But if you know the organization, two ideas here run counter to how they operate. They don't trade high picks, or packages of them, and that's what it would take. And they don't run towards big contracts that would skew their whole salary structure.

On the first point: Why in the world would the Cards accept a first, an unproven running back and two inferior receivers for a Pro-Bowl caliber guy? It would be more like at least a first and a third.

On the second point: What Boldin wants would surely mess with the Titans pay scale.

I know many Titans fans dream of such a move and think it's the sort for which the Titans should break from their mold. But I'd be very surprised if this ever came close to happening. And I think Boldin will wind up playing for Arizona this season.


Bryan in Jacksonville writes: Do you think that as we get closer to the opening of the season that the Jags will take the approach of reducing the offer to D. Harvey? Also, do you feel his agent will start feeling additional pressure to get Harvey signed as he probably does not want to be known as the only agent who had his client hold out this long in 07? I'm assuming other agents would use this against him when recruiting clients for next year. Thanks and keep up the great work!

Paul Kuharsky: I don't see the Jaguars reducing their offer, no. That would only make things more contentious, if that's possible. I'm sure they've said it's a take it or leave it kind of deal, though there is always room to revisit. In terms of other agents using it against Ken Kremer -- he's got a long-standing reputation built over time with a lot of clients and won't likely be judged on one. And I'm sure he can sell people on the idea that he took a hard line in Harvey's best interest even if you and I might disagree.


Rick from parts unknown writes: So your criteria for the Colts is "In these polls I've closed my eyes, envisioned the logo and seen who's highlight reel flickered on my eyelids." but when it comes to the Titans/Oilers you think Bruce Matthews is the pick? Earl Campbell is king of the exciting highlight clip. Please try not to be so hypocritical.

Paul Kuharsky: Point taken, Rick. He's referring to my comments regarding the picks of fans for all-time franchise players in our SportsNation polls. I liked Johnny Unitas over Peyton Manning for the Colts, but Bruce Matthews over Earl Campbell for the Oilers/Titans.

But wouldn't you agree, Rick, that Matthew's freakish longevity does more to distinguish him from Campbell than Manning's career does so far to distance himself from Unitas?


Cathi in Jacksonville writes: I am very irritated that espn avoids any coverage of the JAGUARS! It is as though the JAGS don't exist or that the commentators seem to have forgotten the fact that though the JAGS were a wild card playoff team, they played a much better season and playoff round than the BORING colts, chargers, titans, and redundit patriots. Why is it that the comment a couple of weeks ago concerning the steelers and the obstacles they face this season do not include the team that beat them twice on their own turf and made history in doing so? When will theses sports channels give the JAGS credit for being a tough team to beat and a team that will give any opposition a run for their money? J.D., Freddy T. Paul Spicer, David Garrard, Reggie Williams: They are still football players and deserve, along with the rest of the team at least a few minutes of coverage by the bias commentators!

Paul Kuharsky: Perhaps some of the people you are upset with will read your sentiments here. I'm sorry I can't agree with you that everyone a) has an agenda and b) has an anti-Jags slant on that agenda.

As for the AFC South blog, we strive to be one-fourth Jaguars all the time.


The Great Dan Beezy in H-Town writes: At this point in there careers looking back and seeing how there teams are evolving, who would you have taken first Super Mario, or Vince?

Paul Kuharsky: At this point, if I am picking regardless of need, I take Williams. But I request a two-year grace period for changing my mind before a final decision.


Randall in Nashville writes: Heard you on 104.5 the other morning. Regarding White & Johnson's nickname... Rock & Roll. I enjoy the show & congrats on the ESPN "gig". Thanks!

Paul Kuharsky: Not bad. Randall is referring to a request for a decent name for the Titans LenDale White/Chris Johnson backfield combo. I keep using the clichéd Thunder and Lightning. I don't care for it, but I know people understand what I mean when I say it. Two other good suggestions came on my Nashville radio appearance recently: Bass and Banjo or Smash and Thrash. Have any more?


Russ in Nashville writes: Paul, What's your take on Titans WR coach Fred Graves? In all of this commentary on the lack of talent in the receiving corps, I haven't once heard anyone criticize or even really comment on Graves' role in their development.

Since 2005, we've drafted 8 receivers. I would say that of those 8, not one could start as a 1 or 2 receiver on any NFL team (Roydell when healthy the only possible exception). Are our draft selections really that bad, or is there something to be said about them being coached up to compete at an NFL level? Looking at the NFL draft history as a whole, very few teams have had much success with receivers in recent years, but something smells fishy to me.

Paul Kuharsky: Graves is only heading into his second year. I'd say he did well with Justin Gage and Roydell Williams last year, considering what they'd done the year before. Titan receivers were mediocre under Ray Sherman too, and now he looks pretty good coaching TO in Dallas. I think in this instance it's been way more about what they've been given and what the Titans have invested in the spot than it is about the position coach.