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HOT TOPIC: CLINTON PORTIS-CHAMP BAILEY TRADE

The Denver Broncos and the Washington Redskins engaged in one of the biggest offseason trades when they exchanged two Pro Bowl players. Denver sent running back Clinton Portis to Washington for cornerback Champ Bailey.

The trade spurred debate over what would be more coveted, a great running back or a great shutdown corner. Here are takes from Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren and Bucs coach Jon Gruden.

Holmgren: "I know (Broncos coach) Mike Shanahan has said the shutdown corner is tougher to find than a great running back and if his offense is any indication, that's true. He's always been able to reload at running back and find guys who have done great things. I think he's probably right. I think the corner is a little tougher to find. Now, as far as affecting the outcome of the game, I'm going to look at it a little more from an offensive perspective. I think if you have a great running back, he might have a little more to do with outcome of the game than a shutdown corner. You might be able to throw away from that corner or do some things to not involve him so much in the game."

Gruden: "If you've got (Redskins cornerbacks) Fred Smoot and you've got Shawn Springs, you might say, "Hey, that's not bad. Sure, let's go get that horse.' Yeah, it's not a bad deal for both teams. I think the corner position, in this league nowadays, is growing in importance. Those guys are hard to find, hard."

_ ROGER MILLS, Time staff writer

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