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NFL Rumors & Notes by Ben Maller 03/23/06...

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by trickblue, Mar 23, 2006.

  1. trickblue

    trickblue Old Testament... Zone Supporter

    28,941 Messages
    356 Likes Received
    After wading through the pool in the early stages of free agency, the Carolina Panthers are jumping in head first by talking today with receiver Keyshawn Johnson. Johnson, one of the biggest names in free agency this offseason, arrived in Charlotte on Wednesday night. He will visit today with team officials, according to league sources. ... The same sources said Steve Smith has talked to Johnson to encourage him to join the Panthers, and said Johnson's interest in Carolina has a lot do with the presence of offensive coordinator Dan Henning.
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    Trade talks involving Joey Harrington should accelerate with Harrington due back in the country before the weekend and the NFL's annual league meetings set to begin Sunday. The meetings, which run through Wednesday in Orlando, Fla., bring together executives from all 32 teams and will give Lions president Matt Millen a forum for face-to-face talks with any team interested in acquiring Harrington. Millen spoke last week with Kansas City Chiefs president Carl Peterson when the two were at the Penn State pro-day workouts.
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    More and more, it's looking like former Redskins linebacker LaVar Arrington is headed to the Sunshine State. Question is, will Arrington be playing for Miami's Dolphins or Jacksonville's Jaguars? Both teams are putting on a late, heavy push, and Arrington's decision is expected shortly. Both the Dolphins and Jaguars have a need for a playmaking linebacker such as Arrington, and he would have no problem going to a state where he would not have to pay state income tax. The Giants and Bengals could make last-minute pushes for Arrington, but right now, it looks like Arrington is bound for Florida -- somewhere.
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    There could be some competition for free-agent quarterback Kerry Collins, who has long been linked to the Ravens. Arizona Cardinals personnel executive Rod Graves said the team has spoken with Collins' agent and will weigh its interest in him against its options in the draft.
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    Former Cowboys guard Larry Allen is expected to draw interest from the Oakland Raiders and Seattle Seahawks, for interesting reasons. Allen owns a home 20 minutes from Oakland's training complex and would like to live there full time. The Raiders could use a guard like Allen, so there's a fit there. But there's an even larger fit in Seattle, where the Seahawks could plug in Allen into the spot Steve Hutchinson vacated.
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    The Ravens have let a marginal class thin out to the point where only one of the top 10 free-agent safeties - Tank Williams - is still available. "There are some safeties out there that we still like," said general manager Ozzie Newsome, who recently added that the Ravens are going to wait for the free-agent market to "settle." Williams, 25, would appear to be the best fit for the Ravens, who have long sought out a "thumper" in the secondary. The Ravens have yet to express any interest in Williams, his agent said.
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    The Packers have an interest in former Colts kicker Mike Vanderjagt, although no visit has been set, an NFL source said. GM Ted Thompson intimated that the position is not a priority. "We'll need a kicker sometime around the second week in September, when we open the season," said Thompson, whose team lost franchise leading scorer Ryan Longwell to the Minnesota Vikings earlier this month. "Until then, we don't absolutely have to have a kicker. But we're working on it."

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    Also unknown is the Eagles' interest level in Eric Moulds, the 32-year-old wide receiver who has been given permission by Buffalo to seek a trade. Some observers feel the Bills will have to release Moulds anyway, assuming he continues to resist restructuring his contract, and that no trade is likely. Moulds' agent, Harry Henderson, did not return calls from the Daily News.
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    Najeh Davenport visited the Oakland Raiders on Wednesday, a day after meeting with the Miami Dolphins, but the Packers remain interested in re-signing the unrestricted free agent. It’s unclear whether the Packers have been negotiating with Davenport, but all indications are they would like to re-sign him for the right price. If Davenport returns, he will have to compete for playing time with Ahman Green, who was re-signed to a one-year deal, and Samkon Gado, who was under contract from last year.
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    A league official said the Giants would likely sign a defensive tackle next week. Brentson Buckner and Grady Jackson are possibilities, and both have been in contact with the Giants.
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    The Patriots have made an informal initial inquiry on Buffalo wide receiver Eric Moulds, who has been given permission to seek a trade after the former All-Pro wouldn't take a paycut
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    Major Adams, Vince Young's agent, said the New York Jets, who pick No. 4, and the Baltimore Ravens, at No. 13, have scheduled individual workouts for the quarterback. Arizona Cardinals offensive coordinator Keith Rowen took Young out for dinner to an Austin steakhouse Tuesday night for an informal interview. The Cardinals have the 10th pick of the first round.
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    Aaron Brooks has not been promised a starting job but will be the most seasoned quarterback in the mix. The Raiders have the seventh overall pick in the April 29-30 NFL Draft and they are expected to select a quarterback. Although Oakland could attempt to trade up to acquire either former USC quarterback Matt Leinart or former Vanderbilt passer Jay Cutler, owner Al Davis has been watching former Texas QB Vince Young very closely.
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    Pats free agent wide receiver Troy Brown has drawn interest from the Jets and appears close to making a decision on where he’ll play next year.
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    Mike McMahon, late of the Philadelphia Eagles, is scheduled to meet today with Broncos coaches at Dove Valley to discuss the possibility of becoming a No. 2 quarterback candidate behind starter Jake Plummer. McMahon, 27, is the second veteran QB to pique the staff's interest in the past couple of weeks, after a brief flirtation with Gus Frerotte, who instead signed with the St. Louis Rams. Denver has competition for McMahon's services. The former Rutgers University standout was in Minnesota on Wednesday to meet with the Vikings. He spent the night in Minneapolis before his anticipated trip to Colorado this morning.
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    On Wednesday, punter Jason Baker came and left St. Louis without a contract - an unusual occurrence in the current free agency landscape, where players usually visit cities to sign contracts. There were indications Wednesday evening that the Rams had turned there attention instead to Matt Turk, 37, an 11-year veteran who missed the entire 2005 season in Miami because of a groin injury. Baker, 27, is coming off a career year and was thought to be seeking more than $1 million a year. He's drawing interest from Baltimore, Seattle and Carolina.
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    Saints wide receiver Donté Stallworth was jailed in Miami Beach early Saturday morning after police stopped Stallworth for having an expired tag on his 2005 Bentley, The Miami Herald reported Wednesday.
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    Free-agent linebacker Ben Taylor is weighing contract offers from the Green Bay Packers and Cleveland Browns, and probably will decide by Friday. Taylor’s agent, Bob Lattimore, held additional talks with both teams Wednesday, and said the Carolina Panthers have shown preliminary interest, as well.
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    GM Mike Tannenbaum said the Jets were happy with Chad Pennington's progress, but he would not discuss specifics, not even to confirm that Pennington had begun throwing again, something that Pennington had already told reporters. Pennington had been recuperating in Florida, but is now under the supervision of the Jets' trainers and strength and conditioning coaches.
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    A source with knowledge of Mark Roman's situation said he was upset that the Packers basically had signed Marquand Manuel to replace him at strong safety. For now, at least, it appears as if Roman isn’t going to take part in team activities.
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    There will be a day when quarterback Brett Favre lets the Green Bay Packers know whether he's going to play again. Really, there will be. Right now, the Packers don't know when that will be, so for a second time they pushed back the date - this time to April 1 - that Favre must be on the team to qualify for a $3 million roster bonus. Much has been made of the deadline, but it is mostly artificial because under the terms of the contract Favre doesn't receive the money until September if he returns and doesn't receive it at all if he retires. Thus, if the Packers let the deadline pass, Favre does not become a free agent. He simply is guaranteed the $3 million if he comes back and plays.
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    The Saints will hold press conferences today in Shreveport and Jackson, Miss., to announce that their preseason games will be held in those towns. The Saints will play the Dallas Cowboys in Shreveport on Aug. 21 in a nationally televised Monday Night Football game on ESPN. They will then play the Indianapolis Colts on Aug. 26 in Jackson.
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    This is how sure Colts general manager Bill Polian was that Adam Vinatieri would re-sign with the Patriots: He didn’t even bother putting in a call when Vinatieri became a free agent. But late last week Vinatieri fired his longtime agent. And then everything changed. The decision to jettison Neil Cornrich’s group in favor of Gary Uberstine’s appears central to the process that led Vinatieri out of New England and into Indianapolis, where Tuesday he agreed to a multi-year contract worth at least $2.5 million annually that makes him the highest-paid kicker in NFL history. “We presumed after such a long time in New England and two franchise designations that they’d reach a long-term agreement and he’d go finish his career there,” Polian told ESPN radio yesterday. “I don’t think very many people around the league had heard anything to suggest the contrary.” Conversations with agents and other league sources last night, however, suggest Cornrich’s office failed to shop him aggressively. And that sat poorly with Vinatieri, who had tired of playing in New England for one-year deals and franchise tags when he had established himself as the best clutch kicker in the game. “He’s been mad for a long time,” one of Vinatieri’s former teammates said yesterday. “He’s never been happy with the deals he got there.”
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    For the past couple of weeks the Redskins had expressed an interest in free agent cornerback Jamar Fletcher, but Fletcher hasn't visited. Sources said that Fletcher was hoping to find a team that would allow him to compete for one of the two starting cornerback jobs, an unlikely scenario barring injury in Washington as Shawn Springs and Carlos Rogers are the uncontested starters. According to one league source, the market has slowed because of a glut of quality cornerbacks.
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    In what he indicated were his final comments about the trade of quarterback Daunte Culpepper, Vikings coach Brad Childress confirmed Tuesday that he turned down Culpepper's request for a playbook during the formative stages of their relationship. Childress also did not deny that he was the author of a March 6 e-mail that prompted Culpepper to request a trade. Culpepper called the e-mail "disturbing" but Childress would not reveal its contents.
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    Should they sign Jon Runyan, who visited yesterday and took a physical, or another veteran offensive tackle, the Jets are expected to target North Carolina State defensive end Mario Williams, who would be the heir apparent to John Abraham. If the Jets don't sign a veteran offensive tackle, they'll likely eye Virginia left tackle D'Brickashaw Ferguson with the No. 4 pick in the draft. Despite rampant speculation, it doesn't appear the Jets will try to package their two first-round picks (fourth and 29th) to try to move up to select USC quarterback Matt Leinart. They've also cooled on Vanderbilt quarterback Jay Cutler.
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    Seahawks safety Ken Hamlin has been cleared to resume playing football next season, his agent said Wednesday. Hamlin, 25, suffered a fractured skull in a fight outside a Pioneer Square nightclub in October. He spent nearly a week in the hospital and suffered cerebral bruising. He was placed on the injured list two weeks after the incident, ending his season.
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    Wide receiver David Tyree signed a five-year contract worth about $7.5 million to remain with the Giants. The deal, first reported by The Star-Ledger on nj.com yesterday morning, makes the Montclair native the highest-paid special-teams player in NFL history.
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    Seahawks backup quarterback Seneca Wallace, a restricted free agent, visited the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Wednesday.
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    The Seahawks have interest in former Cowboys guard Larry Allen, according to Fox Sports Radio's Chris Landry. Allen is a candidate to replace Steve Hutchinson who left Seattle for Minnesota.
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    The Packers don’t appear interested in veteran guard Larry Allen, who was cut by the Dallas Cowboys on Tuesday, or veteran receiver Eric Moulds, who was granted permission by the Buffalo Bills to seek a trade.
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  2. trickblue

    trickblue Old Testament... Zone Supporter

    28,941 Messages
    356 Likes Received

    There has been no report of a meeting between the Lions and offensive lineman Larry Allen, a 10-time Pro Bowler released by Dallas on Tuesday. It would not be surprising if the Lions talked to Allen. In the 2004 offseason, when Cowboys coach Bill Parcells indicated he did not want Allen back and let him explore trades with other teams, Allen visited the Lions.
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    On Wednesday, the Cowboys hosted Mike Vanderjagt in their first foray into a kickers market that is nearly dried up. The sides negotiated into the night and were set to meet again this morning, agent Gil Scott said, but it's unclear whether Vanderjagt will visit other teams.
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    Despite widespread speculation, the Raiders didn't have any intention of renewing contract talks with Kerry Collins, 33, whom the team waived on March 10 to save $9.2 million against the $102 million salary cap.
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    Longtime Saints return specialist Michael Lewis was on a free-agent visit in St. Louis. He also is scheduled to visit the Tampa Bay Buccaneers next week and remains in talks with the Saints about remaining in his hometown of New Orleans.
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    The Texans will lead off the draft, and even though they are expected to take Southern California running back Reggie Bush, Vince Young's outstanding performance Wednesday at the Longhorns' pro day should make them think long and hard before making the selection. "He did a great job," Texans coach Gary Kubiak said. "I was real impressed. He showed a very strong arm, and he was accurate on the move. He looked like he could have thrown all day. He made every throw. He did everything you could ask a guy to do in this situation." "I was impressed, but I wasn't surprised, because we already knew Vince was a great athlete," Texans owner Bob McNair said. "He showed a super arm. He was really accurate. He put the ball on the numbers. He was accurate throwing on the run, and he didn't have to break stride. It was a great performance."
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    Offensive lineman Tom Ashworth visited Seattle on Tuesday and is still in negotiations with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Agent Tom Mills said he hasn’t heard from the Patriots since last week. ‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗

    Former Indianapolis practice squad quarterback Tom Arth has signed a free agent contract with the Green Bay Packers. Originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Colts in 2003, Arth spent his rookie season on the team’s non-football illness list. He went through training camp with Indianapolis the last two years and was on the practice squad for most of the 2005 season. Arth’s departure leaves Indianapolis with just two quarterbacks on its roster — starter Peyton Manning and backup Jim Sorgi.
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    The Redskins have visited with free agent backup offensive lineman Jonathan Goodwin and cornerback Kenny Wright. And unlike the urgency that characterized the visits of Antwaan Randle El , Todd Collins , Adam Archuleta and Carter, both came and went without a deal. That is not to say the Redskins will not sign one or both -- they have about $4.5 million of salary cap room. ‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗‗

    Free-agent linebacker Raonall Smith of the Minnesota Vikings is scheduled to visit Rams Park today, according to league sources. Smith, 27, has been a spot starter the past two seasons for the Vikings. He registered 30 tackles last season, with one sack, making six starts, and is considered a good special teams player.
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    Dallas Cowboys quarterback Drew Bledsoe, appearing as a guest on Fox Sports Radio, was asked if he foresaw any possible problems with Terrell Owens: "I've always had good relationships with my receivers. And the reason is that the one thing I ask from them...they don't have to be, they don't have to just step in line. I don't care if they express whatever they're feeling, but the bottom line is I need accurate information. I don't need some guy coming back to the huddle telling me 'hey I was open.' I want you to tell me about what you saw, what the coverage was, so that I can use that information going forward. As long as I get that, we'll be fine." ... "It really is pretty simple. If the guy [Owens] comes in, works hard, does his job, and shows up on Sunday, and gives you a consistent performance, then automatically everybody's just gonna love having the guy around. I think it'll be a good fit."
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    Ted Thompson paused, then chuckled. The Green Bay Packers' general manager knew all about the hot rumor that had been burning up talk radio and message boards Wednesday, when the Web site www.dailyturd.com claimed that quarterback Brett Favre has informed the club of his intention to return next season. "I don't comment on Internet reports," Thompson said Wednesday night. Pause, chuckle. "Especially Internet reports." Nonetheless, the report had fans buzzing and mainstream news outlets checking into it, even though most assume Favre eventually will announce that he's coming back. That said, two club sources said Wednesday evening that if Favre has told the team he'll be back, it's news to them. And earlier this week, coach Mike McCarthy and former No. 3 quarterback Craig Nall, Favre's best friend on the team before signing with Buffalo, each said that Favre had not made a decision as far as they knew. Ben's Take: I love these hard line NFL guys who can't deal with Internet reporting. This website has broken more NFL news in the past year than 95% of newspapers.
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    Packers GM Ted Thompson said the team is "still talking" with free agent center Mike Flanagan about re-signing, but "you never have a deal until you have a deal."
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    At the University of Texas Pro Day, quarterback Vince Young ran the 40-yard dash in 4.57 seconds. He didn't do the vertical or long jumps. Quarterbacks coach Rick Neuheisel was in attendance for the Ravens.
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    NY Giants DE Michael Strahan, appearing as a guest host on the Best Damn Sports Show Period, giving NFL draft advice: "If you want somebody who scares defenses because he can run and pass, you're going to go with Vince Young."
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    Former Patriots kicker Adam Vinatieri said he’ll miss New England but that he’s ready to move on to Indianapolis during an interview with Ch. 4’s Steve Burton last night. “Obviously, there’s a huge part in my heart for New England that will always be there,” Vinatieri said from a hotel lobby in Indianapolis, where he’ll officially be introduced today. “There were a lot of amazing things with the New England Patriots that I was fortunate enough to be a part of. I’ll miss the fans. I’ll miss a lot of stuff about it. But this is a new chapter in my life.”
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    Oakland views Aaron Brooks as a quarterback that has averaged 25 touchdown passes a year, and a player who can be a star if he learns to limit his mistakes. Other NFL teams view Brooks as a poor man's Culpepper, the quarterback the Raiders initially targeted. Somebody's right, and the Raiders are rooting that it's them.
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    The Jaguars could receive some help from NFL officials in the team's bid to give quarterback Byron Leftwich more protection this fall. At the owners' annual meeting next week in Orlando, the league's competition committee plans to present a rule change banning hits below the quarterback's knees, co-chairman Rich McKay said in a conference call Wednesday.
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    The Seahawks had free safety Lance Schulters in for a visit. An eight-year veteran, he played for the Miami Dolphins last season. Jets backup tight end Chris Baker also visited with the Seahawks.
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    In absentia, Daunte Culpepper received an ovation at the dinner and was officially introduced as No. 8, not the No. 11 he wore during his Vikings career. Culpepper had requested the number he had at Central Florida and at Ocala's Vanguard High. Also absent was running back Ricky Williams, whose status for the upcoming year hinges on an appeal of his fourth failed drug test. Second-year defensive tackle Manny Wright was expected to be on stage but was also a no-show.
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    The Kansas City Chiefs have once again proposed increasing the number of playoff teams. In the past, the proposal hasn't received a lot of support. But the fact that the Steelers became the first No. 6 seed to win the Super Bowl, and the fact that issuing two more postseason invites would allow the league to put a postseason game on the NFL Network this season, could change that.
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    The Buccaneers have submitted a proposal that will be considered by league owners meeting in Orlando next week that would expand the scope of instant replay to include all penalties. Falcons president Rich McKay, co-chairman of the league's Competition Committee, said Tampa Bay's unique suggestion has already generated serious discussion. "It was an interesting one, and we talked about it for a good while," McKay said of preliminary talks among committee members. "It does go to the idea that early on, when we were talking about this system, the big thing was to limit the numbers of challenges, but yet try to open up the areas you could challenge." Bucs general manager Bruce Allen said the team submitted its instant replay proposal before the Super Bowl.
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    Saints QB Drew Brees, appearing on the Best Damn Sports Show Period, if he believes San Diego made a mistake letting him go: "I can definately say that I feel like me being there makes them a better team."
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    Packers President Bob Harlan said the Packers have decided to stay with their traditional Kentucky Bluegrass surface at Lambeau Field. Last year, the Packers installed DD GrassMaster on Clarke Hinkle practice field. The grass on the field was reinforced by artificial fibers. Several players and coaches raved about it and expressed hope that it would be installed at Lambeau in 2006. Denver, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia all use DD GrassMaster in stadiums.
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    Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri has an interesting background. His great, great grandfather, Felix Vinatieri, was a Civil War veteran who served as chief musician for Gen. George A. Custer's 7th Cavalry Regimental band. On June 26, 1876, when Custer and the more than 200 troops serving under him were killed by Crazy Horse and his Sioux warriors at Little Big Horn, Felix and the 15 members of his band were waiting on a supply steamboat moored in the Powder River. "I don't know the exact story," Adam Vinatieri (pronounced vin-a-TERRY) said during the days before Super Bowl XXXVIII, "but I'm very happy they left him back." Vinatieri also is a distant cousin of daredevil stuntman Evel Knievel.
  3. Catch-22

    Catch-22 Member

    872 Messages
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    Encouraging news about Vanderjagt, I hope we get something done.
  4. texastwister

    texastwister Member

    475 Messages
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    Dallas Cowboys quarterback Drew Bledsoe, appearing as a guest on Fox Sports Radio, was asked if he foresaw any possible problems with Terrell Owens: "I've always had good relationships with my receivers. And the reason is that the one thing I ask from them...they don't have to be, they don't have to just step in line. I don't care if they express whatever they're feeling, but the bottom line is I need accurate information. I don't need some guy coming back to the huddle telling me 'hey I was open.' I want you to tell me about what you saw, what the coverage was, so that I can use that information going forward. As long as I get that, we'll be fine." ... "It really is pretty simple. If the guy [Owens] comes in, works hard, does his job, and shows up on Sunday, and gives you a consistent performance, then automatically everybody's just gonna love having the guy around. I think it'll be a good fit."



    This is why Drew is an underrated QB. Alot of the sportswriters worry about his mobility and not his leadership.
  5. Thick 'N Hearty

    Thick 'N Hearty Active Member

    2,359 Messages
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    It will be interesting to see how Payton responds to the Stallworth ordeal. Will a little BP come out?
  6. DaDoomsDay

    DaDoomsDay New Member

    66 Messages
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  7. lkelly

    lkelly Well-Known Member

    1,998 Messages
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    Maybe because neither of them have much shelf life left? If any...
  8. lkelly

    lkelly Well-Known Member

    1,998 Messages
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    Wow. Remind me never to drive in FLA with an expired license plate tag. How much jail time can one expect for an offense like that? And do they have to release the coke dealer kingpins to make room for motor vehicle license violators?
  9. TheHustler

    TheHustler Active Member

    5,391 Messages
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    Thanks for the recap.

    I REALLY hope Key stays out of the NFC. :(
  10. BulletBob

    BulletBob The Godfather

    2,174 Messages
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    What's that about? :eek:

    Since when do you get jailed for having expired tags?
  11. junk

    junk I've got moxie

    9,290 Messages
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    :rolleyes:

    Wading through the pool? Jumping in headfirst with Key? I think Carolina has quietly had one of the best free agent offseasons of any team.

    Justin Hartwig and Maake Kemoteau are great additions to the offensive and defensive lines.

    Kemo clogging things up will make life easier for Jenkins and Peppers.

    I'd rate both moves ahead of Keyshawn.
  12. Paniolo22

    Paniolo22 Hawaiian Cowboy

    3,625 Messages
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    I copied the exact same quote. Tough town down there. :confused:
  13. sad_otter

    sad_otter Member

    174 Messages
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    When you try to drive away before the police are done looking at your license.
  14. joseephuss

    joseephuss Well-Known Member

    21,920 Messages
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    Grady Jackson isn't a DT. He is a house.
  15. BigDFan5

    BigDFan5 In Tebow I Trust

    14,919 Messages
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    He was jailed for resisting arrest. When pulled over he handed the cop his drivers license and then drove away
  16. aikemirv

    aikemirv Well-Known Member

    7,093 Messages
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    Why would you give a cop your drivers liscense and then drive away?:confused:
  17. Dave_in-NC

    Dave_in-NC Well-Known Member

    12,271 Messages
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    You need time to swallow the evidence?:eek:

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