Durden done?

JONATHAN HUNTINGTON -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 10:14 AM ET

Reggie Durden took his place in the annual Edmonton Eskimo team photo yesterday morning.

But come this time next week, will Durden still be a member of the Green and Gold?

That has become an interesting question because the defensive back says the Eskimos have offered to trade him if that is what he wants.

The relatively quiet six-year CFL veteran - who will be benched for his sixth consecutive game this Saturday - hasn't directly told the Eskimos if he wants to be dealt.

Instead, Durden is providing this response: "If I can't play, I have to still pay the bills," he remarked yesterday.

Eskimo head coach Danny Maciocia confirms that he has spoken to Durden's agent.

"I had a conversation with his agent and basically we gave them several options as far as what is available," said the coach before noting one of those options is staying put in Edmonton.

"He can stick around here and play his way into the lineup by working the way he has been working."

The trade deadline is Sept. 19, a month earlier than last year.

Does Durden expect to be moved by Tuesday night?

"I don't know. We will see what goes on," is the only response he would give yesterday.

A deal will be a tough task, according to Maciocia.

"How many more days do we have?" remarked the coach. "Plus, first of all, it's tough to make a trade in this league - even if you are in the month of June and Sept. 19 is the deadline."

If the 29-year-old Texas native is dealt, it will mark the second time in seven months. He came to Edmonton with plenty of promise from Montreal - along with defensive tackle Robert Brown - in exchange for defensive back Davis Sanchez in the off-season.

Maciocia had stated the Eskimos avoided throwing in Durden's direction when he played in Montreal last year. But this summer teams have repeatedly had success against Durden. His nightmare began on Canada Day when Chris Brazzell burned him for nearly 200 receiving yards and two touchdowns.

It continued in late July when he was flagged five times by officials in two games.

After starting the first six games of the year, he was taken out of the starting lineup and benched for the first time in his pro career.

Even with the rash of injuries in the defensive backfield - Kelly Wiltshire, J.R. LaRose and Will Loftus - Durden didn't factor into the coaching plans this week.

Instead, recently returned Donald Brady is expected to be on the roster Saturday in Hamilton.

"It's hard (to be in this spot) and I just have to deal with it and hopefully one day I will be playing," said Durden, who has spoken with the coaching staff about his situation.

"I tell them I am focused and ready."

If Durden is still Eskimo property next Wednesday morning, he says he won't become a disgruntled employee.

"I have been through worse - this is not the end of the world or nothing," referring to the fact he grew up in the 'hood in Houston.

"It is just football."

FINISH LINES: Durden will not become a free agent next year. He still has at least one more year left on his contract.


Videos

Photos