AFC West: Andrew Pinnock

Posted by's Bill Williamson

Pass rusher Travis LaBoy, cut by Arizona on Tuesday, may be a good fit in both Kansas City and Denver. If he can stay healthy, he'd fit in the 3-4 defense both teams are adopting. Kansas City head coach Todd Haley and defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast knows LaBoy from their Cardinals days.

Denver finalized a deal with backup linebacker Nick Greisen and cut fullback Andrew Pinnock.

The Kansas City Star suggests Kansas City -- which has a ton of salary-cap room -- to go get a big fish in free agency, starting with Seattle linebacker Leroy Hill.

Here's a fine look at the fire that burns inside new Oakland safety Mike Mitchell.

San Diego top pick Larry English discuses fitting into the Chargers' defense with star Shawne Merriman in a radio interview.

Mr. Irreverent speaks about being a Chief in a radio interview.

The Raiders have signed more college free agents.

Showdown in San Diego: inactives

December, 28, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

SAN DIEGO -- Here are the inactive players for tonight's showdown in the AFC West in the winner-takes-the-division game between the Broncos and the Chargers:

Denver Broncos Inactives

20 FS Marlon McCree
26 CB Jack Williams
37 RB Alex Haynes
38 FB Andrew Pinnock
53 LB Niko Koutouvides
72 G Pat Murray
85 TE Chad Mustard
94 DE Jarvis Moss

San Diego Chargers Inactives

6 QB Charlie Whitehurst (third quarterback)
29 RB Michael Bennett
34 FB Billy Latsko
59 LB Brandon Siler
67 G Kynan Forney
75 T Corey Clark
80 WR Malcom Floyd
98 DT Ian Scott

Posted by's Bill Williamson

How does a guy go from working at a cellular phone kiosk in a mall to being a team's lead tailback in a winner-take-all regular-season finale?

 Bills vs. Broncos highlights Video
 Watch highlights of the Bills' 30-23 victory over the Broncos

When a team loses seven tailbacks to the injured reserve.

Tatum Bell is the quintessential emergency tailback. Bell, signed last month by Denver, is now the team's go-to tailback on Sunday night. The winner of the game will be AFC West champ.

The latest Denver running backs lost to injury are P.J. Pope and Selvin Young, both hurt in Sunday's loss to Buffalo. Pope started against the Bills and had 44 yards on six carries before he suffered a hamstring injury. Young suffered a neck injury against Buffalo.

Now, Bell gets the call. Traded by Denver to Detroit in 2007, Bell was cut by the Lions in September. He was out of football for two months and was working at a Denver-area cell phone store as a manager when the Broncos brought him back.

Backing up Bell on Sunday will be Cory Boyd, who was re-signed off the practice squad. and Alex Haynes, who was signed Monday. Boyd could get a chance for extensive playing time against San Diego if he performs well in practice. He has been a good practice player, but Denver didn't think he was ready for game action a couple weeks ago. Now, the Broncos have no choice but to play Boyd.

Denver will have to find a way to get a running attack going against the Chargers. In the fourth quarter against Buffalo, Denver threw 22 times and ran it three times.

Denver coach Mike Shanahan said at his news conference Monday that the team must simply make do.

"Even though we have had a couple more guys go on IR, we still feel like we have guys that know our system, terminology and how to execute, so that is a plus," Shanahan said.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

Here is a sampling of Mike Shanahan and Jay Cutler's press conference Wednesday in Denver as they begin to prepare for Sunday's game at the New York Jets. Among the topics discussed were Jets' quarterback Brett Favre, the signing of former Chargers' fullback Andrew Pinnock and Cutler comparing his arm to Favre's. Of course, earlier in the season, Cutler said he had a better arm that Denver legend John Elway. Wednesday, he was asked about his arm compared to Favre's.

(Read full post)

Denver adds ex-San Diego FB

November, 26, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

The Broncos have added a former Charger as they prepare for the stretch run and try to hold off San Diego.

Denver signed fullback Andrew Pinnock on Wednesday. Pinnock had recently worked out for Denver which needed a fullback because Peyton Hillis was moved to tailback and Spencer Larsen is playing primarily middle linebacker.

Pinnock is an experienced NFL player who had three starts with San Diego last season. He was cut by San Diego this summer after he was suffering knee issues. Pinnock was expected to be the replacement for Lorenzo Neal in San Diego. But he was beaten out by rookie Mike Tolbert.

Denver also added rookie receiver Jayson Foster to the practice squad. He was previously with Pittsburgh and Miami.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced its 25 semifinalists for enshrinement in 2009. The vote will be in February. Six players who spent a significant part of their career in the AFC West are among the 25 finalists.

Here they are:

Terrell Davis, RB: 1995-2001 Denver Broncos.

  • Will he get in? Davis will eventually get in, but it may be a while.

Ray Guy, P: 1973-1986 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders.

  • Will he get in? Guy is the center of much contention. Many believe he shouldn't even be a finalist and many think he should already be in the Hall.

Lester Hayes, CB: 1977-1986 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders

  • Will he get in? He was a game changer and you can make a strong argument for him.

Derrick Thomas, LB: 1989-1999 Kansas City Chiefs

  • Will he get in? It says here he gets in either in 2009 or 2010.

Ken Stabler, QB: 1970-79 Oakland Raiders; 1980-1981 Houston Oilers; 1982-1984 New Orleans Saints.

  • Will he get in? Many can't believe Stabler isn't in yet but it still may be a while.

Shannon Sharpe, TE: 1990-99, 2002-03 Denver Broncos,; 2000-01 Baltimore Ravens

  • Will he get in? He should waltz in on his first ballot.

Meanwhile, it is being reported that Denver is on the verge of signing former San Diego fullback Andrew Pinnock. He was set to be San Diego's starting fullback this year but he had a knee injury and was beaten out by rookie Mike Tolbert.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

The Broncos are unlikely to do anything drastic at running back before playing at Atlanta on Sunday.

There is still time for Denver to make a splash at the position in which three players went down for the season in a four-day span. However, there isn't much splashing to do in an underwhelming free agent pool.

Denver signed running back Alex Haynes after he worked out with five other running backs in Denver on Monday. Denver looked at veteran Musa Smith and former Chargers Marcus Tomas and fullback Andrew Pinnock.

But Haynes, who had three career carries with Carolina, won the job. He will backup Peyton Hillis, Selvin Young and P.J. Pope, who was just promoted from the practice squad. Young has been dealing with a groin injury for more than a month and is not 100 percent.

That means Hillis will likely be the starter. Hillis finished the game as the tailback in Cleveland last Thursday after Ryan Torain went down for the season with a torn ACL. Four days earlier, Michael Pittman and Andre Hall went down for the season. Denver had the weekend to consider what it wanted to do and decided to have the mass workout Monday.

With very little available on the open market, Denver really had no choice but to stick with what they have, for the most part, even though it is a gamble. Hillis, a seventh-round pick, is primarily a fullback. He was the led blocker for Darren McFadden and Felix Jones at Arkansas.
After Torain was hurt, Denver went to the spread offense and it worked as quarterback Jay Cutler, who is very comfortable using the shotgun offense, threw for 447 yards. All three of Cutler's touchdown passes came in the fourth quarter of Denver's 34-30 comeback win.

At Atlanta, expect Denver to throw the ball more than it runs again as Hillis is eased into his new role and Young is eased back from his injury.

Chargers make roster moves

September, 1, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

The Chargers released fullback Andrew Pinnock and placed center Cory Withrow on injured reserve. He suffered a hamstring injury at San Francisco in the preseason finale Friday.

To replace those players, the Chargers signed tight end Kris Wilson and offensive lineman Kynan Forney. Wilson, a second-round draft pick in Kansas City in 2004, was cut by Philadelphia Saturday. Wilson gives San Diego depth in the wake of the team putting Scott Chandler on injured reserve Saturday. Forney gives San Diego depth on the offensive line. Most of Forney's experience is at guard.

It is unknown if his signing will affect San Diego's interest in the Willie Anderson. The Chargers talked to his agent Sunday. The tackle was cut by Cincinnati on Saturday.

With Pinnock gone, rookie Mike Tolbert is set to get most of the playing time at fullback.. The undrafted free agent has been the star of training camp and the preseason. 

Another Charger to PUP

July, 23, 2008

Posted by's Bill Williamson

Another Charger looks like he is headed to the Physically unable to Perform List. Standout center Nick Hardwick appears on his way to the PUP, joining all-world tight end Antonio Gates and fullback Andrew Pinnock.

Like Gates, Hardwick was expected to go this route for months after having off-season surgery. There is a chance that both Hardwick and Gates could miss sometime early in the season but both players remain confident they will be ready to go for the start of the season.

 The team signed veteran Jeremy Newberry as insurance for Hardwick earlier in the offseason.
There has been some speculation that San Diego could look at bringing back former Pro Bowl fullback Lorenzo Neal if Pinnock does not heal quickly. However, the team is confident Pinnock will return and it also likes second-round pick Jacob Hester who can play both tailback and fullback. Neal wants to return to the NFL. There were signs earlier this offseason that Denver or Philadelphia could make a run at him but nothing developed.

Meanwhile, it appears the Eric Parker situation could come to a head soon with his likely release.