Jul 13, 2011
Wednesday is yet another big day in labor talks as things heat up with players and owners once again in New York, and we also head to Denver, San Francisco, and Washington for some football talk.
Fox wants a running back … One of the biggest offensive shifts in the league could come in Denver, where the wide-open passing attack of Josh McDaniels will give way to John Fox’s multi-RB approach. OC Mike McCoy is a holdover from the previous staff, but he has experience under Fox and will call the plays. Although the Broncos drafted Knowshon Moreno with the 12th overall pick just two years ago, Fox’s #1 priority is to bring in a free agent RB with Moreno potentially moving into more of a third-down role. It’s a move we agree with, because Moreno isn’t really equipped to be the centerpiece of an offense. He can put up decent production, but he’s limited with a lack of fluidity as a runner. Among the free agent RBs, the obvious name is DeAngelo Williams, who had a lot of success with Fox in Carolina, rushing for 1000 yards in back-to-back years before injuries derailed his 2010 season. Williams has the talent to be the foundation of the running game, while guys like Jason Snelling and Ronnie Brown are also possible fits in a timeshare with Moreno. In other Bronco news, Fox said, “Deep down, I have an idea” who the starting QB will be, but right now it’s unclear what will happen between Kyle Orton and Tim Tebow.
Kaepernick cleared … The 49ers received some good news with training camp hopefully nearing, as rookie QB Colin Kaepernick has been cleared medically. The 2nd-round pick out of Nevada underwent leg surgery in May and has been cleared to participate in all football activities. Now, all we need is official football activities to occur. We like Kaepernick a lot, but for 2011, it looks like Alex Smith will be back in San Francisco to hold the job until Kaepernick is ready under new coach Jim Harbaugh. Kaepernick was incredibly productive in college, although he played in the Pistol formation and needs to adjust his game to the pro level.
Labor party resumes … Owners and players are re-joining talks in New York today as we near unofficial deadlines. Lawyers and staff spent the last two days drawing up language in sessions the NFL Network’s Albert Breer describes as “productive.” The league’s goal remains July 21 for a deal to be presented at the owners’ meeting in Atlanta, while PFT reports that a deal in principle could be announced as soon as July 17. Feel free to believe what you want. In lockout-related news, Yahoo’s Jason Cole reports that the Hall of Fame game between the Rams and Bears on Aug. 7 probably won’t happen. While no one wants to lose any football, I think we can all agree that, when the lockout has ended, missing just one preseason game and nothing more would be perfectly fine.
- Steeler LB James Harrison still likes to talk, and it’s probably safe to assume he and Roger Goodell won’t be exchanging Christmas cards.
- At some point, Tarvaris Jackson will be able to get on with his life and stop answering questions about Brett Favre.
- In one of the least surprising reports of the off-season, the Redskins are expected to make a run at a lot of free agents. Jason La Canfora reports that their #1 target is WR Santonio Holmes, who will likely be difficult to pry away from the Jets. Holmes is obviously a good person to target, because if John Beck is going to be the starting quarterback, the Redskins could at least give him a receiver or two. Santana Moss is also set for free agency.