As we wait for teams around the league to announce their roster cuts (that will probably come late this afternoon in most cases), let’s take a trip through the mailbag. Questions about T.J. Houshmandzadeh landing in the NFC South seem to be the dominant topic, so we’ll deal with that first.
Chris in Knoxville, Tenn., writes: What are the chances Carolina trades Dwayne Jarrett to Seattle for T.J. Houshmanzadeh?
Pat Yasinskas: I’m not going to totally rule this one out. The reports say Seattle is ready to trade or cut Houshmandzadeh and Jarrett hasn’t made himself a centerpiece in the Carolina receiving corps. But I think this one is a long shot for several reasons. Trades are easy to talk about, but don’t happen all that often in the NFL. Bringing in an aging wide receiver doesn’t exactly fit with Carolina’s youth movement and there must be a reason Seattle is ready to part with Houshmandzadeh. Also, what makes anyone think any team is going to give up something for Jarrett? Yeah, I know he played for Pete Carroll at USC, but it’s not like he’s shown anything since he’s been in the NFL.
Bhavik in Atlanta writes: What do you think of the Falcons signing T.J. Houshmandzadeh? He's getting old, which is something against the Falcons philosophy but he can have a solid year.
Pat Yasinskas: I’m having a tough time figuring out why so many Atlanta fans think there’s a big need for help at wide receiver. Roddy White’s a very good No. 1. Michael Jenkins is a role player at No. 2 and the Falcons are excited about having a healthy Harry Douglas in the slot. Eric Weems and Brian Finneran provide solid depth and Troy Bergeron may even make the roster. I know a lot of Atlanta fans are down on Jenkins because he doesn’t put up big numbers, but that’s not really his role in this system. His role is to be a safety valve as a possession receiver and a blocker in the running game and he does those things well. With tight end Tony Gonzalez, it’s almost like the Falcons have an extra wide receiver. Gonzalez and White are going to be the main targets in the passing game and I don’t think the Falcons want someone cutting into their opportunities.
Todd in Indianapolis writes: I'm going to be the first to ask,what are the chances the Bucs go after TJ Housh? .f not Carolina probablyy will and we can’t have that!!!
Pat Yasinskas: I really don’t see that one, Todd. It just doesn’t fit with Tampa Bay’s plan. The Buccaneers are going with youth. They drafted Arrelious Benn and Mike Williams this year and Sammie Stroughter last year and they traded for Reggie Brown with five years remaining on his contract. That gives them four young receivers and the plan is to let them grow up with Josh Freeman.
Kenneth in Boston writes: Do you think the Saints could possibly think about switching to a 3-4? Junior Galette seems like the perfect man for an outside linebacker/pass rush specialist and the team can use all their depth, especially to stop 4 receiver sets. Casillas is a great start, but I'd like to see the Saints use more of their young LBs and Clint Ingram in some mixes. Also, Tony Hargrove could definitely play a defensive end in a 3 man front, lined up next to Will Smith and Sedrick Ellis. Your thoughts?
Pat Yasinskas: You may see Gregg Williams throw a 3-4 front out there now and again just to confuse other teams. But the Saints are a 4-3 defense at heart and they’re not about to switch from that. Their personnel is set up for the 4-3 scheme. Besides, I wouldn’t go projecting too much of a role for Ingram. I think there’s a decent chance he won’t even be on the roster by the end of today.