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Falcons notebook: Hall refuses to be part of another losing season

FLOWERY BRANCH - If owner Arthur Blank hires a coach whose personality is directly opposite from Bobby Petrino's, DeAngelo Hall wants to return to the Atlanta Falcons next year.

Otherwise, the two-time Pro Bowl cornerback might demand a trade, although Hall stopped short this week of making a final statement about his future with Atlanta.

'I can't do this no more,' Hall said. 'I won't do this no more, let me say that. I will not be a part of a losing team another year, no matter what I got to do, no matter who hates me, whatever. I won't be a part of a losing team again, not if I can help it. '

Hall remains an outspoken critic of Petrino, who resigned last week after just 13 games and left for Arkansas. Despite missing the NFC Pro Bowl team that was announced this week, Hall insists he's more upset that the Falcons are in disarray because of Blank's decision to fire Jim Mora and replace him with Petrino.

'We went from one extreme of having a coach who played music in practice and a guy you could sit down and have a conversation with to the furthest extreme possible with a coach that don't even want to look at you in the face,' Hall said. 'Walks past you and doesn't even say anything to you. Never smiled.'

Mora, now coaching the secondary in Seattle, led Atlanta to the NFC title game in 2004, his first season and Hall's rookie year. The Falcons missed the playoffs in '06, going 7-9.

Hall, a former No. 8 overall draft pick, grew so tired of what he described as an unapproachable attitude from Petrino that he still doesn't regret their sideline fight in Week 3.

Despite holding Carolina's Steve Smith without a catch in the first half, Hall was called for two personal fouls and 67 yards in penalties against the star receiver on a third-quarter possession that contributed largely to Atlanta's 27-20 loss.

When he came to the sideline after the Panthers drive ended with a game-tying touchdown, Hall engaged in a shouting match with Petrino. Teammates had to drag Hall away from Petrino, who later fined his cornerback $100,000.

Hall also believes he was justified to carry a poster of imprisoned quarterback Michael Vick onto the Georgia Dome field two weeks ago, a move that drew a $10,000 fine from the NFL.

The Falcons (3-11) have a five-game losing streak entering this weekend at Arizona (6-8).

It might seem that Hall, who has one season remaining on a six-year contract that's paid over $30 million in salaries and bonuses, has little leverage to demand a trade. But his persistent willingness to 'be brutally honest,' as he puts it, could alienate the next coach and cause the replacement for general manager Rich McKay to trade him.

Hall likes Petrino's interim replacement, Emmitt Thomas, who has worked as Atlanta's secondary coach since 2002. But Thomas, at 65, doesn't want to pursue the job full-time.

'I don't think it's come to, 'Get me out of here right now,'" Hall said. 'I wouldn't say that, but it's just that the offseason ... (is) definitely going to be interesting to see who we bring in, what free agents are available to go after, what draft picks we make to try to get better.'

Crumpler also talks departure

Alge Crumpler, a four-time Pro Bowl tight end, never criticized coaches or teammates publicly before Petrino arrived.

His personal policy changed after the Falcons lost at Tennessee and dropped to 1-4 on Oct. 7. Crumpler called out Petrino for ignoring veteran players' eagerness to get more touches and give input on game plans.

Now Crumpler isn't so sure that he wants to return to Atlanta next year. He plans to spend time this winter with his family and traveling to see his alma mater, No. 1 North Carolina, play basketball.

'I think my frustration clouds my judgment at this point, so I would have to get away from the game for a little bit,' Crumpler said. 'I just need to see how everything is going to develop. Obviously, everything right now is speculation.'

Crumpler agreed with running back Warrick Dunn, who earlier this week decried how this season had been such a waste.

'There was so much more that I could've done to help the team this year than I was allowed to do,' Crumpler said. 'You know, I was bitter for it. My family and the people who support me helped me get through the turmoil that's gone on this season. So once I get away and let these wounds heal emotionally and physically, then I'll have a better idea how to make that decision.'

Catching a break, maybe

Rookie CB Chris Houston was worried that his chronically sore knee might give the Cardinals a major advantage, but Pro Bowl receiver Larry Fitzgerald has an injured groin, and wideout Anquan Boldin has a dislocated toe.

Fitzgerald and Boldin both practiced this week, but like Houston, they are listed as questionable.

Listed as doubtful for Atlanta are receiver Joe Horn (foot), defensive tackle Tim Anderson (knee) and cornerback Antoine Harris (foot). Defensive end John Abraham (knee), quarterback Byron Leftwich (ankle) and center Todd McClure (flu) are probable.

SideBar: Falcons at Cardinals

When: Sunday, 4:05 p.m.

Where: Glendale, Ariz.

TV/Radio: Fox/92.9-FM