I'm spending this week in Lake Tahoe, Nev., chatting up various NFL players and coaches participating in the American Century Championship golf tournament. Here are some notes from the event:
- Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said the quarterback battle between Kevin Kolb and John Skelton could go all the way to September -- just like it did with Kurt Warner and Matt Leinart before the 2008 season. They have five preseason games and a scrimmage with the Chiefs. Look for the two-minute drills against the Chiefs to be the first big test. Don't read too much into which one starts the third preseason game, because the team will treat the second preseason game as a tuneup game, too.
- Jared Allen was shocked the team cut Ryan Longwell and "hopes" rookie kicker Blair Walsh, a sixth-rounder from Georgia, is ready. As for his prediction of 25 sacks this season (he had 22 in 2011), Allen pointed to over seven sacks he missed or were taken away last year. He also said he was a traditionalist and does not want to move around looking for easy matchups on the line of scrimmage. He prefers to just beat the best left tackles in the NFL.
- Caught up with Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. He likes the possibilities of the pony backfield with Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller. Fitzpatrick also says he takes most of the reps in practice to get ready for the season. He likes the new dimensions Chan Gailey brought to the offense this year.