Shoppin' around

GERRY PRINCE -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:05 AM ET

The talks have gone beyond exploratory.

After six seasons in an Edmonton Eskimos uniform, Terry Vaughn is about to get a new address.

An announcement of a deal that would see the 33-year-old Vaughn headed to the Ottawa Renegades should come later this week.

What the Esks receive in return for the veteran slotback -- who rattled off a CFL-record 10 consecutive 1,000-yard seasons -- is part of an ongoing dialogue.

Ottawa head coach and general manager Joe Paopao did not return the Sun's calls yesterday. Edmonton's chief operating officer Rick LeLacheur wasn't saying much.

"Ottawa and Vaughn, anybody and Vaughn and anybody and anybody, there's nothing to be said right now," LeLacheur said. "There's lots of discussion about a lot of players.

"Right around the league, a number of guys are shopping guys. I wouldn't classify any discussions we've had about any player (as) close to done."

Even with his annual price tag, which tops the $150,000 mark, Vaughn is a luxury the deep-pocketed Esks can afford.

But following a season which saw Vaughn slowed by knee, ankle and rib injuries, moving the eight-time Western Division all-star at this juncture is likely in the Green and Gold's best interest.

Although that's not the spin LeLacheur is putting on things.

"He's got a great history," said LeLacheur. "He didn't have as great a year last year with his injury and I think the (failure of the now-defunct Terry Vaughn's Sports Lounge) had an effect on him.

"He still gained a thousand yards. But at the end of the day the coaches have to make the decision on what they want."

NAME-CALLING

After dealing their first two picks in this year's Canadian college draft to Ottawa last August, Edmonton isn't scheduled to pick until the third round of the name-calling session slated for April 28.

The Esks would like to recoup the first- and second-round picks they surrendered in exchange for non-import defensive linemen Clinton Wayne and Patrick Kabongo as part of that deal.

Vaughn, meanwhile, is a good fit for the Renegades offensively and provides Ottawa's marketing department with the marquee player the team has been lacking.

The Renegades thought they'd made a successful pitch to land Ed Hervey, but the free-agent wide receiver re-upped with the Esks.

UNSUCCESSFUL PITCH

Ottawa also made an unsuccessful pitch for free agent Chris Brazzell, who later signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Montreal Alouettes vice-president and general manager Jim Popp has talked trade with the Esks and was given permission to speak to Vaughn. However, Popp says he's not prepared to pull the trigger on any deal he regards as too pricey in terms of talent or draft picks lost.

Vaughn was unavailable for comment yesterday.

GONE WITH THE WIND?: Esks defensive end Rashad Jeanty will have a keen interest in this weekend's National Football League draft.

Jeanty, who celebrated his 22nd birthday Sunday, is eligible for this year's NFL lottery which gets underway Saturday and concludes Sunday.

"I'm looking forward to seeing what happens," said the six-foot-two, 236-pound defensive end. "I've also got a lot of friends in the draft, so I'm going to watch it."

Some pundits are projecting Jeanty to go late in the seventh round and likely be converted to an outside linebacker.

The lone fly in the ointment is the fact Jeanty is entering the option year of his Esks contract. However, that may not be as big a stumbling block as it appears. Were Jeanty to be selected by an NFL club, that team would have the option of buying out the final year of his contract. That would cost the drafting team about $35,000 Cdn.

LATE HITS: Roughly 100 players from 26 area high schools are taking part in the annual Esks high-school camp which kicked off yesterday. The camp wraps up Friday with the North-South game.


Videos

Photos