Sports Illustrated's Peter King gently started the Branden Albert trade rumors earlier this week when he wrote that the Chiefs will "listen to offers" for Albert. Mike Garafolo of USA Today brought the trade rumors back into the top of the news stack but with a little more force.
Garafolo's USA Today report states that the Chiefs "aren't desperate" to trade Albert but realize another team would pay him.
The money line: "Kansas City isn't just listening to offers, as Sports Illustrated reported this week. The team is seeking out suitors. To borrow a word from the New York Jets' Rex Ryan in shooting down the Darrelle Revis rumors, the Chiefs are 'actively' shopping Albert."
I'm not quite sure how to reconcile the "not desperate" part and the "seeking out suitors" part of the USA Today report but we've all seen how this game ends. Albert wants to get paid and the Chiefs probably aren't going to pay him (or else they probably would have already). The Chiefs will field some offers, take the best one, use the top pick on Luke Joeckel and use the extra pick they'll receive from the Albert trade in next April's draft.
That's my prediction on how all this turns out ... even if it's not the way I want things to turn out.
Matt Conner wrote earlier this week that the Chiefs moves this offseason at offensive tackle are confusing, and I agree. There's a strategy involved here that we don't know but it's incredible to think that the Chiefs could go from having book-end tackles, who could both reasonably compete for a Pro Bowl every year, to having a rookie left tackle and a second-year right tackle (Donald Stephenson). The financials certainly play into all of this, and it's all about where the priorities are for the Chiefs decision-makers, but taking a big-picture view of this doesn't give me any clear answers on their plan.
Of course, this could also just be all talk. It could be just what it is -- a rumor. And nothing else could come out of it. Andy Reid has said nothing but indicate Albert is a top left tackle.
Let us know what you think in the poll below. Not whether you want Albert to be traded ... but whether you think it will actually happen.