CARLISLE, PA., AUG. 5 -- The Washington Redskins, faced with a decision on suspended defensive end Dexter Manley by the NFL's Oct. 16 trading deadline, have "casually mentioned his name" in trade talks with several other teams, sources said.
It's not clear how serious the Redskins are about actually trading him, but at least one team has been contacted in the past 10 days, a source said.
That team wasn't interested and it appears no other team is interested -- yet. The Redskins won't comment publicly on any of their trade talks except to say that teams discuss dozens of matters every day and that discussing something and acting on it are two different matters.
However, it appears they would trade Manley if they had an offer. It's not clear what they're asking, but they likely would ask no more than a mid-round draft choice or lower.
Manley has told friends he doesn't believe the Redskins want him back, and a source close to him said he talked to Coach Joe Gibbs "and was left with the impression they didn't want him back."
The Redskins have declined to comment about Manley since his Nov. 18 suspension for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy, but seemingly have made it clear he's not in their plans.
The problem then is what do they do with him? Manley is eligible to apply for reinstatement on the one-year anniversary of his suspension, but that comes more than a month after the NFL's trading deadline.
Any trade would be contingent on his suspension being lifted, but it's unclear if a team can even trade a suspended player.
The Redskins never checked with the league office since they never got close to a deal. An NFL legal source said there are no written guidelines on such matters and that it would probably be up to Commissioner Paul Tagliabue to approve a deal.
Manley, 31, could be more in demand by Oct. 16 after teams have had time to assess their own weaknesses. That's also the seventh week of the regular season, and teams depleted by injuries in the defensive line could be interested.
However, if the Redskins can't trade him by the trading deadline, they'll have to activate him or release him when his suspension is lifted.
Manley, who was unavailable for comment, is working at the John Lucas Center in Houston, where he underwent rehabilitation last winter. He recently said it would be too tough to remain in Washington during football season and that he'll remain in Texas until he's able to play football again.
He has said he'd like to return to the Redskins, but friends say, faced with a growing realization that that may not be possible, he has begun to consider which other teams might be interested.
Manley has been in the news several times since his suspension. His attorney Bob Woolf asked that the suspension be lifted early so that Manley could re-start his career.
Tagliabue refused and Manley briefly considered playing in the Canadian Football League. However, CFL teams honor NFL contracts and Manley has six games remaining on his contract with the Redskins.
Woolf had hinted he might take legal action against the NFL, but last week he said Manley had given up on the idea of playing in the CFL and was concentrating on a November return to the NFL.