AFC West: Bob Sanders

ALAMEDA, Calif. -- The gut feeling is Oakland Raiders coach Dennis Allen survives Tuesday’s meeting with owner Mark Davis, a self-described patient man who, nonetheless, wants to see progress in the wake of back-to-back 4-12 seasons in which the Raiders lost eight of their last nine games both years.

As a league source told last week, “Dennis Allen is the coach until he’s no longer the coach. The only people firing Dennis Allen right now are the media.”

But could Allen walk out of the sit-down unemployed? Yes, especially if he essentially fires himself by falling on the sword on behalf of his staff.

Only two of Allen’s assistants from this past season -- offensive coordinator Greg Olson and linebackers coach Bob Sanders -- have contracts for 2014. Though Allen wants to re-up the assistants he wants to retain for two years, Davis is only willing to go one year, a different league source said.

Who seems most worthy of such job security and would be essential to the continuity Oakland so desperately needs?

Let’s start with defensive coordinator Jason Tarver, who has shown flashes, defensive line coach Terrell Williams, special teams coordinator Bobby April, assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tony Sparano, quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo and running backs coach Kelly Skipper.

If Davis is unwilling to bend, it would seemingly corner Allen. Plus, with the Raiders about to have some $60-plus million to spend in free agency, what kind of message would that send to free agents? It would be hard to tell quality players to commit to Oakland long-term if the coaching staff and its philosophy are relative short-timers.

Or, imagine courting and signing a prototypical 4-3, hand-in-the-dirt speed-rushing defensive end for 2014, and then firing the staff and a new coach switches to a 3-4 defense. Same thing with a press-cornerback who then has to learn how to play soft zone. It just won’t work.

Thinking out loud here, but if that is indeed the case, Davis should go ahead and part with Allen now to bring in a new coach with a new staff and new schemes to impress upon free agents going forward. And that's not considering the feelings of general manager Reggie McKenzie.

No, I’m not advocating one position over the other. There are seemingly as many pros as cons to each scenario.
Romeo Crennel might soon be back in the NFL.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting the former Kansas City head coach might join New Orleans’ staff as defensive coordinator or in another role with the team. I was told recently that Crennel, 65, is still interested in coaching and would put off retirement if the right job comes up. Perhaps it will be in New Orleans.

Meanwhile, the Chiefs added former longtime NFL defensive back Al Harris to their staff as an assistant secondary coach. Harris played in Philadelphia for new coach Andy Reid, and he played in Green Bay with new Kansas City general manager John Dorsey.

The Chiefs also added Mark DeLeone as a quality control coach and kept assistant strength and conditioning coach Brent Salazar.

In other AFC West news:

The Raiders have filled their coaching staff with the hiring of longtime NFL assistant Bob Sanders as linebackers coach. He was Buffalo’s linebackers coach last season, and was Green Bay’s defensive coordinator from 2006-08. This hire gives Oakland’s staff more experience. This year’s staff, as a whole, is more experienced than last year’s staff.

Kansas City Pro Bowl punter Dustin Colquitt told the Kansas City Star he wants to stay with the Chiefs. Like Oakland punter Shane Lechler, Colquitt is a free agent. Right now, the general consensus is Colquitt has a stronger chance of returning to his team than Lechler does.

GQ Magazine has a look at former Raiders’ defensive lineman Anthony Smith, who is accused of multiple murders.

The San Francisco Chronicle offers a transcript of a radio interview conducted by Oakland coach Dennis Allen.
The Broncos’ first foray into free agency wasn’t the big hit they were waiting for, but it does fill a hole in Denver.

The Broncos agreed to a two-year deal with Cleveland safety Mike Adams, who fills Denver’s need for a veteran safety.

Adams has a chance to start for Denver. He played 77 percent of the defensive snaps for the Browns last season. With Brian Dawkins likely not returning -- Denver isn't expected to bring him back if he doesn’t retire -- Adams gives the Broncos much-needed experience at safety.

The team drafted Rahim Moore and Quinton Carter last season. Moore began the season as a starter, but he regressed. By the end of the season, Carter was by far the better player. The team still has hopes for Moore, but Adams offers insurance if either youngster struggles.

In other AFC West safety news:

Steve Gregory, formerly of San Diego, agreed to terms with New England. Gregory was an injury replacement for Bob Sanders last year. Gregory is probably a bit underrated, and his departure will have the Chargers looking for a partner for Eric Weddle early in the upcoming NFL draft.

Alabama’s Mark Barron and Notre Dame’s Harrison Smith are possibilities for the Chargers in the draft.

Bob Sanders' body betrays him again

September, 28, 2011
You have to think Bob Sanders' NFL career is over.

[+] EnlargeBob Sanders
Christopher Hanewinckel/US PresswireBob Sanders' NFL career may be over after being put on the injured reserve.
After playing just nine games total in the past three years for the Indianapolis Colts, Sanders' season with the San Diego Chargers ended after two games. Sanders, who missed Sunday’s game against Kansas City, was put on the injured reserve Wednesday because of a knee injury. That means four straight seasons have ended on the injured reserve for the hard-hitting, playmaking safety. He has played just 11 games since the 2007 season when he was the NFL Defensive Player of the Year.

San Diego general manger A.J. Smith made it clear in a statement that the Sanders’ experiment is over in San Diego.

“All we wished for Bob was good health and hoped to turn him loose to do his thing, which was being one great, physical, highly-competitive player,” Smith said. “It didn’t work out for him or us, and we wish him the very best. He was with us a very short time, but made a positive impact with our team in many ways, and I’ll always appreciate that.”

The Chargers knew they were taking a chance on Sanders and the deal was very team friendly. But they liked Sanders and they wanted him to be a big part of the defense. They expected him and fellow safety Eric Weddle to create a special tandem.

When I spoke to Smith about Sanders, Smith said all Sanders needed was “health.” He didn’t get it. I met Sanders during the summer and he is easy to root for. He said he was due for some good health and he was thrilled to get the chance in San Diego. When healthy this summer, Sanders was fast and he looked good.

But, in the end, his body betrayed him again.

The Chargers, who are getting used to injuries, will use Steve Gregory with Weddle along with some other young players. Gregory is serviceable, but a healthy Sanders could have been special.

Meanwhile, the Chargers brought in another veteran defender. Defensive tackle Tommie Harris replaces Sanders on the roster.

Harris was cut both by Chicago and Indianapolis this year. The Chargers want a veteran to fill the gap in the rotation for the next few weeks. Luis Castillo will be out for several weeks with a broken leg and Jacques Cesaire will be out for several weeks with a knee injury. Rookie defensive wend Corey Liuget missed last week’s game with an ankle injury. He was practicing some Wednesday. Still, it is not known if he can play against the Dolphins. The Chargers will take anything Harris can give him at this point.

Sanders out; Harris in in San Diego

September, 28, 2011
The San Diego Chargers just put safety Bob Sanders on the injured reserve with a knee injury and signed former Chicago defensive lineman Tommie Harris because of concerns on the defensive line.

You have to think Sanders’ career may be over. I will be back later with analysis on this news. I am finishing another post, but I wanted to pass this news along.

Malcom Floyd active for Chargers

September, 25, 2011
SAN DIEGO -- In a surprise move, San Diego has activated receiver Malcom Floyd for Sunday's game against Kansas City.

He was listed as doubtful on the injury report. He did not practice all week after hurting his groin at New England last week. The Chargers have activated all six of their receivers, likely in case if Floyd suffers a setback. Rookie receiver Vincent Brown is expected to make his NFL debut.

As expected, San Diego will be without tight end Antonio Gates because of a foot injury. Also, as expected, San Diego safety Bob Sanders is inactive with a knee injury. San Diego rookie defensive end Corey Liuget is inactive with an ankle injury.

Kansas City first-round pick, receiver Jon Baldwin, is inactive for the third straight game with a thumb injury he reportedly suffered in a fight with teammate Thomas Jones five weeks ago. Baldwin did begin to practice on a limited basis last week.
Last year, the San Diego Chargers played about a quarter of a game with their three top receiving options -- receivers Vincent Jackson and Malcom Floyd and tight end Antonio Gates -- on the field together.

This summer, San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers talked about his excitement of having the opportunity to play with his top options. Well, he likely won’t get that chance Sunday against visiting Kansas City.

Injuries are starting to hamper the Chargers again.

Floyd is doubtful to play Sunday with a groin injury that kept him out against at New England in Week 2. He didn’t practice all week.

Defensive end Corey Liuget (ankle) and safety Bob Sanders (knee) are also both doubtful after not practicing this week. Sanders missed all but nine games in the past three seasons with several injuries. He did play the first two games this year.

Gates is questionable with a foot injury. He didn’t practice all week.

Jackson (abdomen) is probable. He practiced fully. Running back Mike Tolbert is also probable after practicing fully Friday. He didn’t practice due to a calf injury for the first two days of the week.

Chargers' health woes continue

September, 22, 2011
The San Diego Chargers’ injury situation did not improve Thursday.

Receiver Vincent Jackson joined the five key players who did not practice Wednesday on the sideline Thursday. Friday will be a crucial day for all of them pertaining to their chances of playing against visiting Kansas City on Sunday.

Along with Jackson, tight end Antonio Gates (foot), running back Mike Tolbert (calf), safety Bob Sanders (knee), defensive end Corey Liuget (ankle) and receiver Malcom Floyd (groin) didn’t practice for the second straight day.

The San Diego Union Tribune reported Thursday that Jackson will play against the Chiefs, but the other players are less certain.

It’s too early for Chargers’ fans to panic about these players’ availability on Sunday. But after this team suffered a string of injuries (Gates and Floyd were among those who were injured often last season) this news has to be a tad unsettling.
Eric WeedleAP Photo/Denis PoroyA lot is expected of San Diego safety Eric Weddle after he re-signed for $40 million.

The two men the San Diego Chargers chose to anchor their defense in 2011 spent their post-lockout time essentially living together.

Eric Weddle, fresh from signing a $40 million dollar contract that kept him in San Diego, was in charge of getting former NFL Defensive Player of the Year Bob Sanders up to speed in the Chargers’ scheme.

“From the moment the lockout ended, we were studying and talking,” Weddle said. “It just wasn’t on the field. It was at breakfast, lunch, dinner. We’d study in the cold tub. We’d stay here to 1 in the morning, talking and getting comfortable with each other. We know how important it is.”

And the extra time spent together has paid off.

“It feels like we’ve been playing together for three or four years,” Weddle said.

The Chargers think their safeties can be among the best in the NFL and can lead them on a deep run in the playoffs. So far, so good. Weddle and Sanders looked to be on the same page as the defense took over in the second half of Week 1, when the Chargers outscored the Minnesota Vikings 17-0 on their way to a 24-17 win.

The two safeties will be paramount for San Diego in a critical AFC matchup at New England on Sunday. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is coming off a 517-yard passing performance at Miami in which his tight ends terrorized the Dolphins' safeties. Weddle and Sanders will be in charge of slowing down that attack this week.

[+] Enlarge Bob Sanders
Christopher Hanewinckel/US Presswire"All I wish for Bob Sanders is health," San Diego general manager A.J. Smith said. "... That's all he needs."
Weddle, 26, and Sanders, 30, are an interesting combination. Both are undersized, intelligent leaders. The players are at completely different phases of their careers, yet both men are in prove-it mode in 2011.

Weddle, a 5-foot-11, 200-pound fifth-year pro, is out to prove that he was worth the monster deal that San Diego re-signed him to early in free agency. Sanders, a 5-8, 206-pound ball of dynamite, signed a short-term deal with the Chargers, wanting to prove he can still play in the league. Sanders, who earned the NFL’s top defensive honor in the 2007 season with Indianapolis, played a total of nine games in the past three seasons with the Colts, who finally gave up on him last winter.

Chargers general manager A.J. Smith, a longtime fan of the relentless Sanders, agreed to terms with Sanders on the eve of the lockout. The deal was finalized right after the lockout ended. Smith envisioned a Weddle-Sanders safety tandem for some time. Some in league circles thought the addition of Sanders meant the Chargers were prepared to move on without Weddle. But this was a package deal.

It’s earning rave reviews.

“Sanders and Weddle is a perfect safety combination,” Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. said. “They’re really going to make a difference for the Chargers.”

Safety play is predicated on emotion and desire. The Chargers are benefiting from the fire that burns in each player.

Sanders is bent on proving he is not a fragile former good player.

“I hope my run of bad luck is done,” Sanders said.

Indeed, Sanders is due for some good fortune. In 2008, Sanders was hampered by ankle and knee issues. In 2009, he suffered an arm injury that scuttled his season after the second game. Last year, Sanders suffered a biceps injury in the first game and was out for the season. Sanders believes it’s important to note that he has been the victim of a string of fluky injuries and there are no real structural problems.

His teammates have raved that Sanders looks like he's in his Colts’ heyday. Chargers coach Norv Turner said Sanders flies around the practice field like a “bullet.”

The Chargers know they have a special player in their midst.

“When you played Indianapolis, you always had go find No. 21 and go block him,” San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers said. “It’s good to have him on our side.”

Smith said he has no doubt Sanders will revert to his pre-injury days if he stays on the field.

“All I wish for Bob Sanders is health,” Smith said. “Best of health, Bob. That’s all he needs.”

While Sanders’ season is centered on staying out of the trainer’s room, Weddle’s is about his living up to his beefed-up bank account.

“I know a lot will be expected from me because of this deal,” said Weddle, who is known for his ability to stop the run and making timely interceptions. “That’s fine. That’s part of it.”

In the end, Sanders and Weddle are in it together as they begin their partnership.

“I want Bob to be great and he wants me to be great,” Weddle said. “Because if we are both great, it will only benefit this team.”

A Carolina reunion in Denver?

September, 4, 2011
Carolina has reportedly waived defensive end Everette Brown, according to Sirius NFL radio. The Panthers traded a future No. 1 pick in 2009 (yes,the same thing Denver did with flameout cornerback Alphonso Smith that year) to take Brown in the second round. It will be interesting to see if the Denver Broncos (coached by former Carolina coach John Fox) claim Brown. Denver has the No. 2 claiming priority in the league behind Carolina. Thus, the Broncos will get first crack at Brown. For a team looking for the right mix on defense, I could see the Broncos making this move if Fox believes Brown can play.

In other AFC West related-news Sunday:

Well, we can forget the notion that Brandon Meriweather could reunite with Scott Pioli in Kansas City. The safety has signed with the Bears. He was cut by New England on Saturday.

As a result of the 53-man roster Saturday, the Chargers are the third oldest team in the NFL. Signing veteran defenders Takeo Spikes, Bob Sanders and Na'il Diggs (who was added Saturday) certainly helped add to the Chargers’ age tally. Rebuilding Denver is the youngest team in the division.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter has reported that former Chiefs guard Brian Waters has agreed to terms with New England. Waters, a face of the organization for the past 11 years, was cut in Kansas City this summer. Best of luck to Waters, who was always generous with his time with me in the Chiefs’ locker room.

There were some interesting numbers-related nuggets gleaned from the 53-man rosters. The Raiders have among the fewest linebackers (six) in the league. Kansas City is tied for the fewest amount of offensive lineman (seven) while San Diego is tied for the most linebackers (10) in the league. Perhaps these numbers are indications of where teams could look to add or look to cut from in the next few days.

Chargers add linebacker Na'il Diggs

September, 3, 2011
The San Diego Chargers made an interesting pickup Saturday, signing veteran linebacker Na'il Diggs.

He was recently cut by St. Louis. Diggs started 12 games for the Rams last year at strongside linebacker in a 4-3 defense. He can play in a 3-4 defense and the Chargers, who run a 3-4 defense, need some veteran help at inside linebacker.

Diggs, 33, is entering his 11th NFL season. He also played with Green Bay and Carolina. He could potentially push youngster Donald Butler for a starting job. San Diego this offseason has also added veteran linebacker Takeo Spikes and safety Bob Sanders.

The San Diego Union Tribune reports newly signed veteran linebacker Kevin Bentley was cut. Veteran inside linebacker Stephen Cooper is on the bubble.

Chargers' intelligence report

September, 1, 2011
Here is San Diego's preview page:

1. Rivers is refreshed: This season ought to be easy for Philip Rivers. Last year, top receivers Vincent Jackson and Malcom Floyd and tight and Antonio Gates were on the field together for about a quarter of a game. Jackson held out much of the season. Floyd and Gates were hurt late in the season. By the end of the year, Rivers was throwing passes to street free agents. He threw to 17 different receivers. Yet Rivers managed to throw for a career-high 4,710 yards. Imagine what Rivers will do with a healthy receiving base.

2. The pass rush is on: KC Joyner, the Football Scientist, expects the Chargers to bring the heat this year. The Chargers had a very respectable 47 sacks last season. They have a chance for a lot more this season. Joyner said the Chargers' 2011 opponents allowed a combined 592 sacks last season. That total ranks as the seventh most in the league. Expect the Chargers to blitz often under aggressive new defensive coordinator Greg Manusky.

3. Tolbert will be a horse: Just because the Chargers plan to use second-year running back Ryan Mathews a lot, don't think sturdy tailback Mike Tolbert will be forgotten. The Chargers love this guy, and Mathews and Tolbert will both get a lot of carries. In fact, if Mathews' durability issues continue or if he is slow to develop, I could see Tolbert getting most of the carries. Coach Norv Turner completely trusts Tolbert and loves how hard he runs. Tolbert is a plus player in every facet of the Chargers' offense.

4. Liuget is legit: It's not often that the No. 1-ranked defense in the NFL adds a potentially dominant front-three player. That's exactly what the Chargers have done. They took Illinois defensive end Corey Liuget with the No. 18 pick. Liuget has been explosive, and he has been a playmaker in camp. He often gets into the offensive backfield. He is a humble player who is willing to learn. The Chargers can't wait to unleash him in their starting lineup, giving them a playmaker to pair next to standout nose tackle Antonio Garay.

5. Spikes and Sanders are on a mission: The Chargers added veteran safety Bob Sanders and veteran linebacker Takeo Spikes to their defense. For Sanders, it's a chance to show he can still be the player who won the NFL Defensive Player of the Year award in 2007. He has played a total of nine games in the past three seasons because of injury. He has been healthy this summer, and he looks like the old Sanders. This is Spikes' 14th NFL season. He has never been to the postseason. Spikes knows this year is his best chance, and his play this summer has been inspired.

Late-summer AFC West checkpoint

August, 26, 2011
This unusual NFL season is about to start in two weeks. A lot has happened in the month since the lockout has been lifted. With the signing period and training camps over, let’s take a checkpoint look at each AFC West team:


Key pickups: Running back Willis McGahee, defensive tackle Ty Warren (he could be out for the year with a triceps injury), defensive tackle Brodrick Bunkley, defensive end Derrick Harvey, tight end Daniel Fells.

Key losses: Offensive tackle Ryan Harris.

Story of camp: There has been quarterback news nearly at a daily clip. The fallout is this: Kyle Orton is the starter, Brady Quinn looks like he has the edge to be the backup and second-year quarterback Tim Tebow is currently the third-stringer after a less-than-spectacular training camp. Don’t expect Denver to trade or cut Tebow. He should be in Denver this year, but perhaps being nothing more than a special-package player. Give credit to both Orton (who was nearly dealt to Miami in the days right after the lockout ended) and to Quinn. Both have played well during the tumultuous time at the position.

Keep an eye on: Denver’s defense. The Broncos took a hit with Warren’s injury. He was the team’s big-ticket pickup and he was signed to give stability at the team’s weakest area. But the Broncos seem to have made some strides on defense this summer. The unit, which was No. 32 in the NFL last year, seems more aggressive and it has some playmakers. Pass-rushers Elvis Dumervil (back from missing all of last season with a pectoral injury) and No. 2 overall pick Von Miller look like they could give this unit life. It's clear new head coach John Fox has already positively impacted this unit.

Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson's view: "Denver may be better than people realize. I don’t love the offense, but it will be OK. Defensively, I think they will be much better. I think the front office had a promising offseason as they rebuild.”

Kansas City

Key pickups: Receiver Steve Breaston, defensive tackle Kelly Gregg, fullback Le'Ron McClain, offensive tackle Jared Gaither, linebacker Brandon Siler (he is out for season with a torn Achilles).

Key losses: Defensive linemen Ron Edwards and Shaun Smith

Story of camp: The defending AFC West champions had a nice, quiet, productive camp -- until the final days of it. The Chiefs built great momentum after adding several key veterans to an already-impressive roster. The only controversy was whether or not coach Todd Haley was taking a chance by taking camp slowly as a precaution because of missed time during the offseason due to the lockout. Then, the bombshell hit. It was reported that first-round pick Jon Baldwin and veteran running Thomas Jones had a locker room fight. Baldwin hurt his hand as a result and he is expected to miss the rest of the preseason. The Chiefs aren’t talking about it, but it is a strike against Baldwin, who had character concerns at Pitt. The Chiefs took Baldwin to help them win right away. This event isn’t a devastating blow, but it has to raise concerns.

Keep an eye on: Of all of the Chiefs’ moves, the signing of Gaither may be the most intriguing -- and the most promising if he can stay healthy. Before he missed all of last season with a back injury, Gaither was considered one of the better young left tackles in the NFL. Assuming he can play, Gaither could play either left tackle or right tackle. If he plays left tackle, Branden Albert would move to right tackle. He could further solidify a good line.

Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson's view: “I think Kansas City is the second-best team in the division. Give the Chiefs credit. They have surrounded Matt Cassel with every possible weapon to help make him successful. They are also solid on defense. I just don’t think they are as good as the Chargers.”


Key pickups: Tight end Kevin Boss, quarterback Trent Edwards, quarterback Terrelle Pryor

Key losses: Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, tight end Zach Miller, guard Robert Gallery

Story of camp: The Raiders lost some big names and they added some big names as they began the Hue Jackson era. However, a late-round pick from Tennessee stole the show in camp. It has been all about receiver Denarius Moore. He made headlines virtually every day in camp with one spectacular catch after another. Most importantly, he has played well in preseason games and he looks polished. Expect the Raiders to give this kid a chance to contribute right away once the regular season starts.

Keep an eye on: The Raiders’ health has been an issue all camp. Several players have missed serious time. Thus far, though, it doesn’t look like many key players will miss time in the regular season other than receiver Louis Murphy, who had surgery on an undisclosed injury, and young linebacker Travis Goethel is likely out for the year with a knee injury. The team said he won’t play at Denver on Sept. 12, but it hasn’t said how long he will be out. Other players such as Boss, receiver Chaz Schilens and cornerback Chris Johnson all could be back for the opener, which is part of an ESPN “Monday Night Football” doubleheader. Thus far, most of the injuries have been nagging and fairly minor. But sometimes the injury bug hits a team and doesn’t stop all season. For now, this is mostly a preseason nuisance.

Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson's view: "There are things I like. I love the front seven. I love Darren McFadden. But Jason Campbell is an average quarterback on a good day and the offensive line is in flux. Overall, inconsistencies make this the third best team in the division.”

San Diego

Key pickups: Linebacker Takeo Spikes, safety Bob Sanders, pass-rusher Travis LaBoy

Key losses: Running back Darren Sproles, linebacker Kevin Burnett, receiver Legedu Naanee.

Story of camp: I didn't sense this team scrambling to make up for lost time following the lockout. For the most part, the key components of this team are in place and several players worked out together locally during the length of the lockout. The Chargers had seemingly a zillion free agents and they kept the players they wanted. So, it has been a smooth camp in San Diego as continuity has been the key.

Keep an eye on: A lot has been made of the arrival of Spikes and Sanders to the No. 1-ranked defense in the NFL. But don’t discount impact of No. 18 overall pick Corey Liuget. The Illinois product has been outstanding. He has taken over the preseason games at times. He is an explosive defensive end who quickly gets into the backfield. The game doesn’t seem too big for Liuget. Expect him to be an instant starter and have a chance to be a premier player early in his career.

Scouts Inc.'s Matt Williamson's view: “I think San Diego is clearly the class of the division. I don’t think people are paying enough attention to this team. I love the offense. Philip Rivers is good as it gets. He has great weapons. Defensively, this team has added playmakers at every level. If the special teams can improve even marginally, they are going to win a lot more games. This could be the year. I think they are a sleeper team that could win it all.”
Here are some highlights from our AFC West chat, which was held earlier Thursday:


Scott from Northglenn, CO.: Seen reports that McGahee is way ahead of Moreno. Could he be the starter, and Moreno the 3rd down back?

BW: They brought him as a complementary guy, but if McGahee gets it done more that Moreno, I can see roles switching. The word is McGahee has looked good.

Kansas City

DeShawn from N.C.: Do you think the Chiefs have a shot at winning the division?

BW: Why not? They did last year before we knew they were any good. Now we know they are good and they got better. Sure, they have a chance.


Donnie from Daytona Beach: Hey Bill, I was wondering if the Raiders were after any vet WR and if there is any update about Lofa or Hayden? Or if they are after someone else.

BW: It was reported last week that Oakland was considering both Tatupa and Hayden. They are both coming off injuries and teams seem to be weary of signing them at this point.

ESPN’s John Clayton tweets that the Raiders are still talking to Tatupa, although no deal is imminent. I’d guess the Raiders want to see their linebackers play against Arizona on Thursday night before they decide to pursue a veteran at the spot.

San Diego

Chris from Santa Barbara: In baseball, the big preseason move was A. Gonzales and the best under the radar move was Russell Martin. In Football this year I say Haynesworth is the big move and Bob Sanders will be the under-rated move. What do you think of that comparison?

BW: I love baseball, so kudos for the comparison. I think Asomugha was the A. Gonzalez move. But I like the Sanders call. The Chargers are fired up about this guy. He didn't look rusty to me. If he stays healthy, he's a boon addition.