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Green in awkward position in KC as Chiefs, Dolphins stall on trade
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Angry and frustrated because a deal has not gotten done with Miami, Trent Green practiced with Kansas City on Tuesday while insisting he has no plans to ever play for the Chiefs again.
Yes, said the two-time Pro Bowl quarterback, it is a very awkward situation.
"It's not only awkward for me and my family, but it's awkward for the guys in the weight room, in the locker room, on the practice field," he said. "I'm here every day. People ask, `What's going on?' Guys don't know how to react to me, how to treat me."
Green, who turns 37 in July, was one of the NFL's most productive quarterbacks from 2001 to 2005, but sustained a severe concussion in the opener last season and did not play well when he returned for the second half of the year.
When he was asked by Chiefs president Carl Peterson in February to restructure his contract and prepare to take a reduced role, he asked for permission to find another team.
Miami did work out a contract with Green. But the Chiefs and Dolphins have been at a standoff, with Miami offering a sixth-round draft choice and Peterson insisting on a fourth-round pick.
In an escalating war of words and nerves, Green's agent has said Green would not play for the Chiefs again. But Peterson fired right back, saying he was prepared to keep the disgruntled veteran even as a backup and pay his guaranteed $7.2 million this year.
Head coach Herm Edwards has said publicly several times that he would give second-year man Brodie Croyle every chance to seize the job. He also said as recently as Monday that the competition between Green, Croyle and Damon Huard would be fair.
"He's always very careful to put a disclaimer at the end and say, `But everybody's going to be equal, everybody's going to have the same number of reps,"' Green said. "He's the head coach. He can do what he wants.
"But I've been in the league long enough and when you see those comments over the course of several months and you see the way the reps are going to work out, and you see what Brodie's making, what Damon was re-signed for and what I'm making, it's not a fair competition. It's a weighted competition."
If a deal is not worked out, would he retire before staying with the Chiefs, especially as a backup?
"I really haven't had that discussion with my wife or my family and I haven't had that discussion with my agent because I'm still banking on the fact that the deal that was made back in February or March, that they would get the trade done," he said. "I guess when that time comes, then I'll have to cross that bridge."
But he left no doubt he does not relish the thought of ending his career as a No. 2 or 3 quarterback.
"I'm not real excited about that, considering what's unfolded over the last seven, eight years or so in my career," he said. "That's not something I'm real excited about doing. Being a third is definitely not my thought process."
At Miami, Green would probably serve as a caretaker while the Dolphins groom John Beck of Brigham Young, selected in the second round of last month's draft.
There has been speculation Miami will trade or release Daunte Culpepper, still hobbled by a serious knee injury he sustained in 2005. Culpepper played only four games last season and has yet to receive medical clearance to participate in mini-camp next month.
Miami head coach Cam Cameron was Green's quarterback coach at Washington, and Terry Shea, his longtime quarterback coach in Kansas City who was fired at the end of the season, also has wound up with the Dolphins.
But Green said the Dolphins had not promised he would start.
"They haven't said, `You're the guy, come right in," he said. "They haven't told me one way or another. I just know I would have a much more fair chance, for my mind. Because here, it's obviously weighted."
The Chiefs have two more practices this week and then three next week before a mandatory three-day minicamp June 1-3. Green said if he's not in Miami, he will take part.
"Players and coaches alike have come up to me and said, `We support you. What's going on is wrong,"' he said. "I've had to step back because I don't even know my role. There's an awkwardness there."