Bengals AJ McCarron able to laugh about trade that wasn’t


Hearing that his trade to Cleveland had fallen apart when the Browns failed to submit paperwork in time was not the most disappointing thing Cincinnati Bengals backup quarterback AJ McCarron had to deal with on Halloween.

“What I’m more upset about is we got all that candy and nobody showed up to the house,” McCarron joked with reporters who had flocked to his locker Wednesday afternoon to get his thoughts on the trade that wasn’t.

»RELATED: McCarron speaks about failed trade

»RELATED: Browns reach new low with botched trade

McCarron was in a good mood because he said he felt as though he was in a win-win situation regardless of how things played out between the Bengals and Browns front offices.

“I’m not angry about anything,” he said. “I’m not upset. It feels good to be wanted, by the team you’re on, by another team,

“It would have been really exciting, but it didn’t happen,” he added. “So I’m blessed, either situation. I’m living out my dream playing in the NFL and have a beautiful family, everybody’s healthy. There’s no hard feelings either way. It’s just a good time to be living right now.”

»RELATED: Bengals Weekend Forecast: First look at the Jaguars

McCarron said he was preparing to take his son, Tripp, trick-or-treating around 3:30 p.m. when his agent called and told him he thought the trade was a done deal. About an hour later, he found out it fell through.

“We were told the deal was done and then something happened,” he said. “I really don’t know what to tell you. I’m just as lost as everybody else here.”

Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis said it was the first time he’s ever seen a trade fail to go through because one team didn’t submit the paperwork in time.

“All you have to do is notify the league office you’re making a deal,” he said. “That’s an easy thing. It’s not a good situation.”

»RELATED: Bengals make a change with Burfict

The Bengals had been seeking a first-round pick for McCarron in the offseason, but there were no takers. Tuesday’s trade was for a reported second- and third-round pick in 2018, which is more than the New England Patriots got when they dealt backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers for a second-round pick Monday.

Lewis admitted he was “relieved” the trade didn’t happen.

“AJ is a very valuable member of this team,” he said. “I told him that yesterday afterward. He’s a great kid. He’s a true team player. He’s a leader. He’s a leader on this football team, and that’s why we felt like he’s such a valuable asset. And the man upstairs (team owner and president Mike Brown) was very clear about that, of how we felt about him.”

McCarron said he intended to seek out Brown and thank him for attempting to trade him.

“Today I’m going to thank Mr. Brown personally just because I admire that he was going to give me the opportunity to go start and play somewhere,” McCarron said. “I appreciate that of him. He’s been an unbelievable owner for my experience here, so I really appreciated that.”

»RELATED: Marvin Lewis on why John Ross might not play vs. Jags

That McCarron is willing to express that gratitude despite the fact he’s a contract dispute with the front 0ffice — one involving whether he will be an unrestricted or restricted free agent next spring and ultimately will be decided by arbitrator — is one of the reasons why the quarterback is so respected and admired by his teammates.

Many of them spent Tuesday night and Wednesday morning poking fun at McCarron over the botched deal.

“I have some really good friends in here,” McCarron said before singling out Adam Jones, Brandon LaFell, Darqueze Dennard and Vontaze Burfict.

“I had Tez tell me they would’ve been tagging me if I would have played against them,” McCarron continued. “I just stuck up both arms in a muscle form and told him, ‘Come get some.’”

Had the trade gone through, McCaron would have faced the Bengals in four weeks when the Browns come to Paul Brown Stadium on Nov. 26.

McCarron said that would have been fun, but the alternative isn’t so bad either.

I’ve learned through this whirlwind of a year you can’t really expect anything until it actually happens,” he said. “I have been through a lot of mind games. I think it makes you mentally tougher, stronger, let’s you see all the crazy sides of this business in a short amount of time.

“But like I said,” he continued. “I am blessed to be in my situation and enjoying every minute of it.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

Urban Meyer endorses play of Ohio State offensive line
Urban Meyer endorses play of Ohio State offensive line

The play of Ohio State’s offensive line has been a bit of a lightning rod among the fan base this season.  The head coach provided an endorsement of the group Monday — but he wants to see more. “I think we could play a little bit better,” Meyer said two days after the Buckeyes beat Michigan State 26-6. “That was a...
Bengals Report Card: Grading Sunday’s 51-14 loss to the Saints
Bengals Report Card: Grading Sunday’s 51-14 loss to the Saints

The Cincinnati Bengals were missing their best player on offense Sunday, and the defense just didn’t show up at all. The result was one of the worst losses in franchise history, as the Bengals fell 51-14 to the New Orleans Saints. »RELATED: Bengals reportedly fire defensive coordinator »RELATED: 5 takeaways from Bengals’ blowout...
Cincinnati Bengals: Head coach Marvin Lewis to take over team’s struggling defense
Cincinnati Bengals: Head coach Marvin Lewis to take over team’s struggling defense

One day after an embarrassing defensive performance in a season full of them, the Bengals fired defensive coordinator Teryl Austin. Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis, a former defensive coordinator for the Baltimore Ravens, will take over the defense moving forward. “I appreciate the hard work that Coach Austin has put into our football team, but...
Cincinnati Bengals: 5 takeaways from blowout loss to Saints
Cincinnati Bengals: 5 takeaways from blowout loss to Saints

Disappointing, frustrating, embarrassing — all words the Cincinnati Bengals used to describe Sunday’s loss. The New Orleans Saints scored on nine straight drives, racked up 509 yards of offense and handed the Bengals a 51-14 loss Sunday in front of 52,492 fans at Paul Brown Stadium in what was one of Cincinnati’s most lopsided...
High School Football Playoffs: Regional final pairings, sites
High School Football Playoffs: Regional final pairings, sites

The Ohio High School Athletic Association released the pairings for the regional finals (third round) of the football playoffs Sunday. Home team listed first. Pairings include seed and record. 1 Mentor (11-1) vs. 7 Lakewood St. Edward (8-3) at Euclid Community Field 4 Powell Olentangy Liberty (8-4) vs. 2 Dublin Coffman (11-1) at New Albany Veterans...
More Stories