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Ask PFW, Part II: Topic cornucopia

Why isn't Chris Baker getting more action down in the red zone? I thought with his size and pass receiving ability he would be unstoppable in the red zone.
Kenneth Cartisano

Great question. We've been wondering that as well here at PFW. I can only imagine it's the bad luck of the draw for Baker when it comes to play calling. He has the skills, there's no doubt. He just hasn't been targeted when the team gets into the red zone. I don't think that's an indictment of his talents, but more a case of match-ups dictating the way the plays are called. But I agree with you, Kenneth, I think it would be worth the offense's while to try to get Baker more involved in the red zone.
Erik Scalavino

Hey guys. With the Patriots trading away Seymour, I was assuming that freed up enough cap space to give Wilfork an extension. I haven't heard anything about that though. Do you have any news on what the Pats are planning on doing (if anything) with the extra cap space? Thanks, and keep up the great work.
Kevin Hahn

Well, Seymour was and is scheduled to become a free agent after this season, so, the cap space he freed up didn't amount to much because it only saved some money for this season. To give Wilfork the type of contract he'd presumably want, the Pats would need a lot of extra room in years to come. Seymour's trade to Oakland doesn't really help in that regard. What it does do is take away a player who would have otherwise competed with Wilfork for dollars under the Patriots cap. As for news about contract talks between Wilfork and the team, we've heard as much as you have of late. That doesn't mean they aren't happening, but if they are, we aren't aware of them.
Erik Scalavino

Hey guys, what do you think about the NFL adopting some version of baseball's disabled list? I think teams should be allowed to place players on an in-season PUP list for four or eight games, thereby freeing up a roster spot. It's hard to see why the league hasn't considered this possibility. Thanks!
Kris Johnson

I like the basis of your idea, Kris. It would warrant further examination, but at first glance, it seems like a good idea. My guess is they don't have one in place in an effort to prevent teams from acquiring more players than are allowed and stashing them throughout the season.
Erik Scalavino

Is there any chance the Pats could get Deion Branch back from the Seahawks for a mid-round draft choice before the trading deadline? I think a receiver trio of Randy Moss, Wes Welker, and Branch would be fantastic.
Dennis Camara

We've got some good picks. St. Louis is going nowhere. Any chance we can float a first-or second-round pick (throw in Laurence Maroney too if needed) for Steven Jackson? Just wondering ...
Mike Williams

First, for those who are unaware, the NFL trade deadline for this season is next Tuesday, October 20. Now, to the particular trade scenarios.

I'd love to see the Pats get Branch back. The offense could certainly use another talented weapon, particularly one like Branch who has a history with this team. I'm not confident it will happen, however, and in fact, I think it would be unprecedented for a team to trade a player for whom they traded back to the team from whom they originally acquired him. I can't think of any other case in NFL history in which that has happened. Jackson would be another great addition to this offense, and Maroney is a St. Louis native, so that might make some sense … on paper. I wonder, though, if the Rams would part with their best player, even if they don't appear playoff-bound at this point. Interesting ideas, but I wouldn't hold my breath for either, if I were you.
Erik Scalavino

On the schedule there used to be future years' opponents, although now it only goes through this year. Is this a sign the NFL may be changing to a 17-game schedule or some other CBA related reason or did you just stop putting future years opponents on the link?Ed Dischino

Actually, Ed, when the current scheduling format was created back in 2002, the league calculated the schedules for all 32 teams for the following eight seasons. This year is the eighth and final of that original scheduling grid. Nothing was predetermined past 2009. I would expect the league to announce another eight-year schedule plan sometime this offsesaon.
Erik Scalavino

Do practice squad players stand on the sideline during games?
Justin Magnuson

Usually not. For home games, practice squad and other inactive players typically watch the game from a private booth in the press box. Road games, they watch from home or elsewhere because they aren't part of the team's travel party.
Erik Scalavino

How did the team logo get the nickname of The Flying Elvis?
Daniel McIsaac

Many people think the logo bears a striking resemblance to a profile shot of the King of Rock & Roll. And the red, pointed stripes at the back of the tri-corn hat give the impression that Elvis Patriot is traveling forward at a high rate of speed. Hence, Flying Elvis.
Erik Scalavino

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