The Redskins are expected to make some additions to their front office soon, and one of the first names to surface is likely an unfamiliar one to most Redskins fans. Jim Popp, the general manager of the Montreal Alouettes in the Canadian Football League, could soon be joining the Redskins' personnel department, according to a Montreal Gazette report. A message left with Popp on Thursday was not immediately returned, and there was no word coming out of Redskins Park about Popp. Popp has been the Alouettes' general manager for the past 15 years.
Shaun Ellis wonders if he has sacked his last quarterback for the New York Jets. The 32-year-old defensive end, the team's longest-tenured player, is uncertain about his future with the Jets after asking for and being denied a contract extension. He told The Associated Press on Thursday that he's unsure if he'll even be with the team when the season begins in four months. "I don't know," Ellis said. "I think so. Well, I hope so. You never know what they're thinking up there. You've just got to roll with it. We try to control our own fate, but we really can't."
Just as the New England Patriots retained Vince Wilfork, they have done the same with defensive end Derrick Burgess. The Patriots and Burgess reached agreement on a one-year contract, a league source said Friday morning. The agreement enables New England to continue to stockpile defensive linemen. Already this offseason, the Patriots have signed Wilfork and Gerard Warren to go along with pass rusher Tully Banta-Cain. New England and Burgess have had dialogue since before the free-agent signing period started the first week of March.
While all seems harmonious on the exterior with the Jets, there are some internal issues heating up and getting ready to boil. Namely, new contracts for the Jets' core players, beginning with cornerback Darrelle Revis, who said yesterday that management "promised" him a new contract before the start of the regular season. Revis, speaking in between offseason conditioning sessions yesterday at the Jets' Florham Park, N.J., facility, didn't come out and threaten to hold out of training camp, but he dropped this hint: "We'll figure it out when the start of camp comes."
Titans quarterback Vince Young said his recent switch of agents had nothing to do with wanting a new contract immediately or a deteriorating relationship. The move, he said, was about his future. Young dropped Major Adams in favor of a higher profile agent in Tom Condon, whose roster includes Peyton and Eli Manning. "(Adams) understands and he is still my family,'' Young said after Thursday's minicamp practice at Baptist Sports Park. "There's no flaws in our relationship or nothing like that. He basically guided me and respected my decision and things like that. … It was for me to make a decision for my future. I just thought it was the best thing for me to do.''
Nick Mangold is looking for a contract extension from the Jets, and told The Associated Press he spoke with his agent Wednesday night about talking to the team. "We're moving forward with the process," Mangold said Thursday. "It's just one of those things where you can't rush it or slow it down. You kind of just go with the flow." Mangold is entering the final season of his five-year deal. "It's a sense of security for me," Mangold said. "I don't want to blow out a knee or do anything else drastic and not be able to continue on the way I want to. It's a big thing of having security coming into this year." Mangold said communication between the sides has been "vague" so far.
Veteran free-agent running back Brian Westbrook met with Broncos officials at Dove Valley on Thursday about the possibility of joining the team for the 2010 season. Westbrook, who spent eight years with the Eagles, also has visited the Rams and the Redskins. "We had a great meeting with him," Broncos coach Josh McDaniels said Thursday. "He's not in a hurry. He's a talented player, but certainly we wanted to do our research, so we got him in here. We had an opportunity to speak with him. He's a great person, a great football player and he's healthy now."
The Jets have invited trade offers for Shaun Ellis in the past few months, but have not found any takers, according to a person familiar with the situation. The 32-year-old Ellis, the longest tenured Jet, was denied a contract extension, according to the person. The veteran defensive end is due to make $3.35 million in the final year of his contract. In the past year, the Jets have taken the approach that they will not renegotiate players' contracts, except for those still on their rookie deals, according to a person, who works in the league.
Browns linebacker D'Qwell Jackson confirmed in a text message that he won't be attending voluntary organized team activities, which begin Monday. "I won't be attending OTAs, but I have a clear head and ready for the season so I can play the best ball I've played of my career!'' Jackson wrote. He added that he has nothing else to say right now. Jackson is one of a handful of Browns restricted free agents -- all starters or key players -- who are expected to the skip the voluntary practices, which lead up to the mandatory minicamp June 10-12. The others are safety Abe Elam, running back Jerome Harrison, linebacker Matt Roth, and fullback Lawrence Vickers.
Browns safety Abe Elam said on his website yesterday that he wants a multi-year contract and is weighing his options. Elam, one of the Browns' restricted free agents, has yet to sign his second-round tender of $1.759 million for 2010 and will most likely skip the Browns' voluntary organized team activities, which begin Monday. Most of the restricted free agents, including D'Qwell Jackson, Jerome Harrison, Lawrence Vickers and Matt Roth have sat out the offseason workout program and are expected to be absent from OTAs -- 11 days of voluntary practices leading up to the mandatory minicamp June 10-12.
The New Orleans Saints signed former Indianapolis Colts receiver Roy Hall to a one-year contract Wednesday. A league source has confirmed the original report by the National Football Post. Hall, 26, has an impressive combination of size and speed. But the 6-foot-3, 240-pounder has been limited to seven games in his three-year career because of injuries, with one career catch for 9 yards.
Roy Williams made a bold, if unfounded, proclamation Wednesday. He is still a starter at wide receiver for the Cowboys. "Like I said when I first got here, ain't no such thing as me sitting on the bench," Williams said while participating in a golf outing with the team's corporate sponsors. "Never in my life." There is a first time for everything. For the first time in his career, Roy Williams faces a prove-it season. He does not start merely by showing up for duty. Something as seemingly trivial as his weight could become important to the Cowboys' lineup decisions.