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Jeff Demps on trading block for New England Patriots?

Jeff Demps gave the New England Patriots some unwelcome news when he declared his intentions last month to prioritize his track career over the NFL.

Demps' commitment to track means he wouldn't be eligible to contribute to the Patriots until midway through the 2013 season, by his own estimation. The Patriots covered themselves with the free-agent signing of receiver Leon Washington, but the question remains what the team will do with Demps, a running back and return man.

The Boston Herald's Jeff Howe reported Sunday that the Patriots have discussed the possibility of trading Demps, according to his agent.

Demps' world-class speed (he was a silver medalist on the U.S. 4x100 relay team in the 2012 London Olympic Games) makes him an attractive target, and he likely could be acquired at a discount rate. Still, Demps has been up front that football is not his top priority. It's hard to imagine the Patriots would be dealing with a substantial market for him.

Even if Demps never plays a regular-season down, the NFL has been very good to him. The Patriots paid him approximately $400,000 to carry him on their roster and stash him on injured reserve. Not bad work if you can get it.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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