The Early Lead
Posted at 08:38 AM ET, 06/08/2012

Chad Ochocinco: Is this the end for him in the NFL?

Chad Ochocinco stretched during a Patriots workout at the end of May. (Charles Krupa / AP)
Say this much for Chad Ochocinco. He may have lost his job with the New England Patriots, but he hasn’t lost his sense of humor.

Not long after the Patriots released the wide receiver after one extraordinarily disappointing season, Ochocinco changed the job description on his Twitter feed Thursday afternoon to “UNEMPLOYED BLACK GUY” and added a new avatar of himself sitting on polka-dot suitcases as he tries to thumb a ride at the airport (see it here).

After a 2011 season in which he contributed precious little (15 receptions, 276 yards and one touchdown) to the Patriots’ run to a Super Bowl berth, is that description likely to change?

Drew Rosenhaus, Ochocinco’s agent, says he’s looking for the right spot for Ochocinco, a six-time Pro Bowl player who struggled to grasp the Patriots’ offense. While Ochocinco, 34, is more likely to find NFL employment than Terrell Owens, it still seems like a long shot unless he’s ready to sign on as something other than a No. 1 receiver. (Upside: more time for tweeting and OCNN.)

Chances are that, in addition to New England, he can cross a return to Cincinnati off his list. Joe Reedy, who covers the Bengals for the Enquirer, writes, “As for a reunion here, we don't see it happening, especially with the way things ended here. Also two of his last three seasons here, Ochocinco wasn't the receiver he once was. From 2002-07, Ochocinco averaged 88.5 catches for 1,339 yards and eight touchdowns per season. Over the last three, it was 64 catches for 806 yards and 5.7 touchdowns.”

Is there an ideal team for Ochocinco or is this the end of his football career?

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By  |  08:38 AM ET, 06/08/2012

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