Three-time Raiders Pro Bowl cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha has had the option year of his contract voided for failing to meet several incentives this past season, making him free to sign with any of the league's 32 teams. "The contract is voided, but we have to wait on all the ramifications of the CBA before we really move on from there," Raiders senior executive John Herrera said Sunday in reference to the uncertain status of the Collective Bargaining Agreement that has yet to be renewed. Asomugha, who turns 30 before training camp begins next season, could have been retained by the Raiders for 2011 had he reached any of several likely-to-be-earned incentives this past season.
The Carolina Panthers coaching search has gained a bit of steam, as they're working to arrange a second interview with San Diego defensive coordinator Ron Rivera. While a second interview has been requested, no time has been set for the meeting. Owner Jerry Richardson said last week that finalists would be brought back to him after his football and business-side decision-makers canvassed the early candidates. It's worth noting that when John Fox was hired in 2002, he was the only candidate to get a second interview.
Kevin Kolb isn't one for ultimatums – he handled his demotion this season with class – but the backup quarterback wants out if the Eagles plan on bringing Michael Vick back as their starting quarterback, a source close to the situation said. Kolb wants to start and whether that's for the Eagles or not, he will let coach Andy Reid know that during a scheduled Monday meeting. The 26-year-old has been the Eagles' backup for most of four seasons. Asked what would be a best-case scenario for next season, Kolb said, "To start."
"I love it here, as everybody knows," Kolb said after the Eagles' 21-16 playoff loss to the Packers. "My family's settled in here. I would love to be starting here. But I want to be starting somewhere." Kolb was then asked if could take another season in Philadelphia as the backup.
"I can't answer that question," he said. Kolb is under contract for another season, though. The Eagles gave him a one-year extension and an $11 million bonus last April after they traded away Donovan McNabb and gave him the starting job. But he's slated to earn only $1.4 million next season, which is a very low sum for a backup.
Vick, however, is not under contract for next season. The Eagles are expected to franchise him if there is a tag in the new collective bargaining agreement as most assume there will be.
Now that the Kansas City Chiefs' season is over, the team is strongly considering Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy as the replacement for Charlie Weis, according to sources. Weis is leaving the Chiefs after one year as offensive coordinator to accept an identical assignment with the Florida Gators. McCoy joined the Broncos in 2009 when Josh McDaniels was hired as head coach. McDaniels handled play-calling but McCoy assumed those duties when McDaniels was fired on Dec. 6. The playbook and terminology that was employed by McDaniels and McCoy is comparable to what the Chiefs have utilized since Todd Haley became coach in 2009.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have exercised their 1-year option on general manager Mark Dominik. On Saturday, they exercised their 2-year option on head coach Raheem Morris for $2-million a year. Dominik directed an overhaul of the Bucs, which began when he took over as GM two years ago, purging veterans and transforming the Bucs into the youngest team in the NFL.
Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey was back at work on Sunday, breaking down film of Green Bay and Seattle. He didn't want to discuss his interview with Cleveland on Saturday. "I'm going to pass on commenting about that," Mularkey said. Mularkey was set to interview with Denver on Friday, by canceled that interview because he felt it would take away from his preparation for the Falcons divisional playoff game at 8 p.m. on Saturday at the Georgia Dome.
DeSean Jackson wants a new contract. This is no secret. "Hopefully," the wide receiver said after the Eagles' season-ending playoff loss to the Packers on Sunday. "But you can't force it." Jackson spoke briefly about his contract situation long after a throng of reporters had left his stall. For eight minutes of that group interview, the explosive receiver tried to explain why the Eagles weren't able to get their biggest playmaker involved in the offense yet again. "It's never about myself, there are still 11 guys out there on the field," Jackson said. "At any given time somebody has to make a play, and if it's not myself, you have other players that are paid and professionals like myself.
When Perry Fewell was hired by the Giants last year, he made an immediate impression as an incredibly excitable coach. The Denver Broncos have now found that out, too. Fewell, the Giants' defensive coordinator, arrived in Denver on Saturday and formally interviewed with the Broncos Sunday for their head coaching vacancy. And in a video produced for the Denver Broncos' website, it was clear that Fewell was ready to jump at that chance. "It's a situation that you are so excited about that you're ready to jump out of your skin," Fewell said……
New defensive coordinator Wade Phillips reports for his first day of work with the Texans today. Phillips and coach Gary Kubiak will meet to go over candidates to coach linebackers and defensive backs. Those positions became available when Johnny Holland and David Gibbs were fired. Texans offensive cooridnator Rick Dennison will interview for the Denver head coaching job on Tuesday. Dennison, who played and coached at Denver before coming to the Texans last season, will interview with John Elway, the Broncos' new vice president of football operations.
After a season of big plays made on offense and given up on defense, what else did you expect from the first week of the Raiders' offseason? Five days after Oakland chose not to pick up the option on head coach Tom Cable's contract, it was revealed that cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha is, surprise, an unrestricted free agent. The four-time Pro Bowler didn't reach "likely to meet" incentives in an injury-plagued season, thus voiding the last year of his three-year, $45.3 million contract. Asomugha missed two games with an ankle injury and played hurt in others.
"The Arizona Cardinals and Larry Fitzgerald are having preliminary discussions about extending the wide receiver's contract that will likely pay Fitzgerald between $40 million and $50 million in guaranteed money, according to sources. Fitzgerald, who turned 27 last month, signed a six-year, $60 million contract after the Cardinals drafted him third overall in 2004. After his performance triggered significant escalator clauses during his fourth year and presented salary cap challenges for the Cardinals, Fitzgerald then signed a new four-year, $40 million deal in 2008. Fitzgerald will enter 2011 in the final year of that contract and his new deal could make him the highest-paid non-quarterback in NFL history. Fitzgerald has expressed his frustration with the Cardinals' dismal season in 2010. He still caught 90 passes for 1,137 yards as the Cardinals juggled quarterbacks throughout the season. But Fitzgerald's frustration was tied to the team's 5-11 record, raising some doubt about whether he would reject the team's overtures on a new contract."
Rams offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur is emerging as the frontrunner for the Browns head coaching vacancy, ESPN's Chris Mortensen said that NFL executives have told him. Shurmur, 45, spent nine seasons working in Philadelphia with Browns general manager and under coach Andy Reid. Shurmur is well-versed in the West Coast system that Browns president Mike Holmgren and Heckert have spent their careers in.
Broncos football boss John Elway strongly refuted a nationally televised report Saturday that implied he might trade quarterback Tim Tebow to the next team that employs Josh McDaniels. Tweeted Elway: "Any speculation that the Denver Broncos are considering moving Tim is completely false."
Chargers defensive coordinator Ron Rivera was one of four NFL defensive coordinators the Carolina Panthers met with as the team's executives conducted a whirlwind cross-country tour that concluded Saturday. Panthers General Manager Marty Hurney and president Danny Morrison met with Cleveland's Rob Ryan on Wednesday, the New York Giants' Perry Fewell on Thursday, Rivera on Friday and San Francisco's Greg Manusky on Saturday.