Here are some NFL Tidbits & Rumors. Enjoy.
The Redskins might be a logical pick to pursue Michael Vick except for one problem: They don't want him. According to multiple league sources, the Redskins briefly discussed signing the ex-Falcons quarterback and came to a quick and unanimous conclusion. It would not work here. It's a message league sources say has been consistent since January.
With the Pioneer Press having confirmed that Brett Favre has had surgery to release a frayed biceps tendon, the only issue now seemingly remaining for him to sign with the Vikings, assuming his throwing arm responds well, is a contract. Despite Tuesday's report that the Vikings were suspending their pursuit of Favre, he still would be expected to get a contract in the $10 million range, structured over two years, although the future hall of fame quarterback would be expected to play just next season for Minnesota. Favre's agent, sly Bus Cook, is expected to seek at least the $13 million Favre was to receive had he remained with the New York Jets for this season. A cat-and-mouse scenario between the Vikings and Cook could now ensue until a deal is done.
New Orleans Saints fans don't look for Derrick Brooks to be with the team. Coach Sean Payton shot it down in post practice interviews. Asked if the team is considering bringing in veteran linebacker help, Payton said the team is content with the current depth at the position and plans to take the nine players on the roster into training camp.
Which young Dolphins players are ready to break out? Miami general manager Jeff Ireland mentioned receivers Davone Bess (''no doubt ready to take it to another level'') and Ted Ginn Jr. (he's ''a different player,'' he told WQAM last week).
That plan of Adam Jones' return to the Cowboys? Put it on hold. Through Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple, owner and general manager Jerry Jones said, "I have no plans to bring Adam back." According to a report, the owner said he was considering bringing Jones back six months after the team cut the cornerback although the team has not contacted Jones' agent, Worrick Robinson. Adam Jones continues to live in Prosper and work out with Deion Sanders. Robinson said he has had talks with "several teams" but that they are being patient and hoping something can be worked out by training camp. For now, it appears the Cowboys will not be calling.
Nose tackle Vince Wilfork, who is unhappy with his contract situation, was part of a radio interview on the "Dale & Holley Show" on sports radio WEEI Monday. "I'm not looking to sign this big-time, going-down-in-history, the best contract there is. I want to be comfortable, but at the same time, I want to be with the guys that I go to war with. That's Ty Warren, that's Richard Seymour, that's [Tedy] Bruschi, that's Richard Seymour. I don't think I'll find any better group of guys or coaches out there. So I don't want to leave. I'm pretty sure we're going to do everything in our [power] to make it work."
Make no mistake, the Jets remain interested in Plaxico Burress, who has a June 15 court date. If he somehow is available to play in 2009, even if it's for only 12 games (remember he could get slapped with a suspension by the commish), the Jets will be one of his most ardent suitors.
NBC Sports boss Dick Ebersol announced he was adding the gentlemanly Tony Dungy, along with cheap shot artist Rodney Harrison, to "Football Night In America's" studio cast. What Ebersol meant to say is that Tiki ain't going to get much face time on Sunday night. And, though we can't break it down to minutes and seconds, Barber, who once aspired to rise to a Matt Lauer level, is not exactly a major presence on the "Today" show either. There's no way around it, Barber's stock has plummeted. He's the TV equivalent of General Motors, but there ain't no bailout coming his way. Maybe Barber can turn things around, maybe he gets in a groove this season. After all, when he retired from the Giants he had so much potential. Barber was an excellent communicator who spoke his mind. Still, in his two years at NBC he has not been able to live up to the hype.
Kellen Clemens and Mark Sanchez will do everything possible to win the job as the Jets' starting quarterback, with one notable exception: As competitive as they will be on the field, both will do everything possible to support one another during their duel for the No. 1 spot. You read right. Barring a dramatic change of heart from either player, this will be as respectful a competition as you could ever envision. This despite the fact that anger and disappointment occasionally bubble to the surface for Clemens, the presumptive starter before the Jets pulled off the blockbuster draft-day trade for Sanchez. Call it Clemens' version of paying it forward, a lesson from former teammate Chad Pennington.
Larry Johnson has been quiet. He's been well-behaved. He has been almost invisible. So, what's the problem? This isn't a complaint. No, it's another indication that the Chiefs are making things right after last year's implosion. He's not telling loud jokes like he was at training camp last year. He's not complaining about playing time or how a teammate or coach looked at him in the hallway. Nothing. A reporter asked Johnson on Saturday if he'd participate in an interview. Johnson politely declined, same as he did a month ago. Maybe Larry Johnson has finally grown up. It would be a good thing for LJ and the Chiefs if he keeps up the good work. More than anybody would like to admit, Johnson and the Chiefs need each other. But the Chiefs need him only if this new LJ is the one they get for the long haul.
Eric Mangini was asked what things mattered most when judging a quarterback, and his first two points were "huddle presence and the ability to run the offense. ... Who can look at the defense and understand what the coverage is and go to the right places with the ball." The coach talked mostly about the mental approach, about poise, about dealing with pressure and making the right decisions. Could be wrong, but that seems to favor Brady Quinn.
As compelling as that story line sounds -- the Rams returning to Los Angeles -- it isn't going to happen. Not now. And maybe not ever. There are plenty of reasons there won't be an L.A. reboot of the Rams. Here are some of them: Rams owners are hoping to get at least $850 million for the team, and a privately financed stadium will cost $800 million at a minimum. Factor in a relocation fee imposed by the NFL, and the number soars well north of $2 billion. It would be surprising if returning to L.A. cracked the top five issues on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell 's to-do list. It might not even be in the top 10. Just about every ounce of energy is spent on hammering out a labor agreement with the players. The Rams might not have the best stadium in the league, but their lease ranks right up there. The first out clause doesn't come until after the 2014 season. The club pays a nominal amount to play in a dome paid for entirely by taxpayer money. Fans largely have been supportive of the team, even in down years, and the Rams haven't done a lot of searching for alternative deals in their backyard.
It doesn't look like Julius Peppers has many options. That's been the case since the NFL draft passed in late April. Barring an incredibly creative type of trade, there isn't much another team could offer the Panthers that would help them enough this season to make them consider dealing away their Pro Bowl defensive end. Team officials are under pressure to win this season and to finally make the playoffs in consecutive years for the first time in team history. Peppers is a big part of the defensive plan for '09 and trading him for future draft picks doesn't help their immediate needs at all. Team officials expect and believe Peppers will show up for training camp with other players on Aug. 2.
Just a hunch: Brandon Marshall is not long for Denver. While every player has discussed how difficult Josh McDaniels's new offensive system is to learn, Marshall has been spending most of his offseason training in Orlando.
What seemed to be Chad Ochocinco week on the NFL Network wrapped up Friday with a blunt admission from the Bengals wide receiver about his performance last season. "I'm not even going to lie to you, I'm going to say it. Last year, the offseason, I didn't lift one weight, I didn't run one route, I didn't exercise. I didn't do nothing because my focus was on getting out of a situation I didn't want to be in. I'm not going to lie," Ochocinco said. If you're a Bengals fan, you have to be worried when you hear your star WR admit to lack of effort.