AFC West: DeAngelo Hall
Fast-forward: The Redskins have the potential to pressure the passer, especially with Brian Orakpo back in the lineup to pair with Ryan Kerrigan at outside linebacker. And given the pressure the Colts created this past Sunday night, especially off the edges against a mix-and-match Broncos offensive line, the Redskins likely will be emboldened to take a few shots at Manning as well. Many offensive coordinators believe the best way to attack a 3-4 look like the Redskins play is to go to a two-tight end look to push the edges of the formation out away from the quarterback and balance out the formation as well. The Broncos have consistently moved the ball well out of that look this season.
Bounce-back: When a 33-point effort is the low-water mark for scoring this season, things are still going pretty well for the Broncos when they have the ball. Their 42.6 points-per-game average is 12.2 points better than the next-best team. And things have been a little frosty at the Broncos' complex this week after the loss in Indianapolis, given the offense didn’t appear to handle the Colts’ aggressiveness very well. The Broncos figure to push the pace and work the no-huddle, and Manning will look to put things back in the fast lane.
Prediction: The Redskins do like, much like the Colts, to match up their cornerbacks on receivers and play physical at the line of scrimmage. DeAngelo Hall will also gamble at times if he believes there is a play to be made, so look for the Broncos to use some double moves and some hesitation in the routes to see if they can get the Redskins' defensive backs to bite and then throw over the top.
The Oakland Raiders have two openings at the position, but they have not addressed the position since free agency began. Oakland has signed six players from other teams -- three linebackers and three defensive linemen.
The Raiders have hosted Cincinnati’s Terence Newman. He is reportedly deciding between the Bengals and the Raiders.
There are some good players still on the market, but things are slowing down. Among the best cornerbacks available are Brent Grimes, Mike Jenkins, former Raiders Nnamdi Asomugha and DeAngelo Hall, Antoine Winfield, and San Diego’s Quentin Jammer. At this point, all of those players will likely be fairly affordable.
Oakland also could draft Alabama’s Dee Milliner with the No. 3 overall pick.
But I’m sure the Raiders will want to grab at least one cornerback in this year’s solid free-agent class. The three other AFC West teams have each added a highly regarded corner -- Denver signed Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Kansas City signed Sean Smith and San Diego inked Derek Cox.
On election night 2008, the Oakland Raiders cut cornerback DeAngelo Hall after eight games with the team. Oakland traded two draft picks and gave Hall a big extension that offseason.
As Hall did (he ended up with the Redskins), Routt will likely find a new job quickly. I’d be surprised if Routt is claimed Tuesday because of his big contract, but I can see him being popular on the open market. I’m sure there will be teams interested in him on a short-term deal because cornerbacks are at a premium and Routt could fit in as a borderline starter or nickel cornerback in several places around the league. Among the teams that could use a cornerback include Detroit, Minnesota, Washington, Tampa Bay, Miami, Baltimore and the Jets.
Could Routt also find a home within the AFC West? Sure, I could see it.
San Diego could use a solid cornerback. Depending on Tracy Porter’s health, Denver could be interested in a veteran, but I’d say the Chargers are more likely to look at Routt than Denver. Oakland has a bigger need at the position, but Raiders coach Dennis Allen said Monday the team has not discussed signing Routt. They clearly feel comfortable about their decision to cut him in February.
Nationally, in my opinion, Asomugha doesn't get nearly the attention and credit that Revis does. Yet, Asomugha received some love in our rankings.
Revis and Asomugha had a monopoly on all the first and second-place votes. That’s the way it should be. They are the two best corners in the game and they’d be our two starting cornerbacks in any dream game.
However, I gave Asomugha the edge because I think he has a longer résumé and he has had a bigger impact on the game. Asomugha has been in the league since 2003 and Revis has been in the league since 2007. Both men are in their prime.
I’ve seen passes completed against Revis in a limited view of his work. I’ve watched Asomugha play live for years. I can count on one hand the balls that have been completed against him. I’m sure plenty of teams will agree on Asomugha’s worth when he will be showered with lucrative free-agents offers once the lockout ends.
The AFC West influence didn’t end with Asomugha. Denver Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey finished fifth with 53 points. He was one vote behind the Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Asante Samuel. I had Bailey ranked fourth. He may be 32, but he is still playing at a high level. That’s why Denver just gave him a lucrative new deal to keep him off of the free-agent market.
In a bit of a surprise, Oakland’s Stanford Routt finished two points out of the top 10. I did not vote for Routt. I actually voted San Diego’s Quentin Jammer 10th. I think Jammer is an underrated player, so I’m not surprised I was alone in recognizing him. Routt received two votes, including a sixth-place vote by Clayton.
I like Routt and I’m interested to see what he does, in 2011 after signing a fat, new contract. Especially if Asomugha leaves and Routt is the No. 1 cornerback in Oakland. I think Routt was awarded in this ranking for his strong “burn rate" numbers. I’ll be prepared to put Routt in the top 10 next year if he performs well in 2011.
Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Brandon Flowers received three voting points. Like Routt, I could see myself considering Flowers next year. Former Oakland player DeAngelo Hall finished ninth and former Charger Antonio Cromartie received five points. I didn’t consider either because I think they are both overrated. Neither Oakland nor San Diego misses those two players.
Overall, this exercise shows that is a strong time for cornerback play in the AFC West.
Each Thursday leading up to the NFL draft (April 28-30), the ESPN.com NFL blog network will take a division-by-division look at key aspects of the draft. Today's topic: Draft philosophy.
This is the one mystery team in the division. There is a new regime in Denver, led by the Broncos’ legendary quarterback John Elway, who is the team’s vice president of football operations. In his first year in an NFL front office, Elway has the final say. Yet, he does work closely with general manager Brian Xanders, who is a holdover from the last regime, and new coach John Fox. Xanders is expected to have more of a say now, and Fox has been in draft rooms as a head coach for the past nine years in Carolina. They all said Denver will be open minded in the draft. The brass has been at several pro-day workouts and has brought in several players for pre-draft visits. Denver needs defense, but it won’t shy away from taking the best player available. I expect this group to be willing to trade and do what it takes to bring as much talent as possible to Denver as it begins the rebuilding process.
Kansas City Chiefs
One of the reasons Scott Pioli is effective as a general manager is that he is a careful drafter. He was part of a strong drafting team in New England, and his second effort in Kansas City was one of the league’s best. Pioli believes in taking low-risk players. He usually doesn’t pursue players with character issues. He’d rather get a solid player who is a good citizen than a terrific player who is an off-field risk. The Chiefs haven’t been aggressive in draft trades in the Pioli era. I get the feeling he’d rather trade down than up. Pioli is fond of players from the SEC. Both of his first-round picks are from the SEC, and the Chiefs’ first three picks from last year’s draft are from the conference. The reasoning is that if players can excel at the highest level of collegiate play, they have a chance to succeed in the NFL.
The Raiders have one of the most famous draft philosophies in the history the NFL. It’s All Al Davis. And right now, that’s not such a bad thing. After whiffing on several first-round picks, Davis put together one of the most complete drafts in the NFL in 2010. Davis had a draft resurgence by sticking to the basics. He drafted good college players who also tested well at the combine in the offseason. In recent years, Davis seemed more fixated on combine scores and measurables than college production. He took several chances on players who looked the part but didn’t necessarily have the college résumé to back it up. Last year, he drafted proven college players. If Davis can continue that trend, the Raiders will be in good shape. Davis has never worried about the size of the school the player has come from, so he is willing to draft anyone. That worked in the third round last year, when he drafted tackle Jared Veldheer from tiny Hillsdale College. As far as trades go, Davis has been known for trading picks for veteran players such as Randy Moss, DeAngelo Hall, Richard Seymour, Kamerion Wimbley and Jason Campbell in recent years. If the lockout continues, trading picks for veterans won’t be an option. It will be interesting to see whether Davis tries to deal to trade up and recoup the first-round pick that was surrendered in the Seymour deal.
San Diego Chargers
A.J. Smith’s philosophy is to be ready for anything. Smith prepares for any scenario. The San Diego general manager is feeling particularly powerful this year because he has an extra pick in the second and third rounds thanks to the 2010 trades of cornerback Antonio Cromartie and third-string quarterback Charlie Whitehurst. Smith is looking for the best scenario, whether that means keeping the five picks in the first three rounds, trading up for a big score or trading down for several picks. In recent years, Smith has traded up to get players such as running backs Ryan Mathews and Jacob Hester. I can see that being the case this year. The key to Smith’s philosophy is college production. He goes for high-effort, high-production players. He doesn’t go for many projects in the early rounds.
Our first part is the 2008 class:
First pick: No. 12, left tackle, Ryan Clady
Total picks: 9
Stars: Clady is the standout of this class. He is one of the NFL’s best left tackles and one of the prizes of Denver’s roster as it begins the John Fox era. Receiver Eddie Royal had a great rookie season under Mike Shanahan in 2008 and bounced back with a positive third season after a sluggish 2009 season. There’s still time for him to be a consistent, quality NFL receiver.
Duds: There are no players on this list that stand out as being terrible value picks. However, that doesn’t mean this was a productive draft for the long haul.
Not much left: Shanahan’s final draft class in Denver was one of his best. Denver got great production out of this class in 2008. But once he came to Denver in January 2009, Shanahan’s replacement, Josh McDaniels, had no interest in moving forward with many of Shanahan’s players. McDaniels jettisoned running backs Peyton Hillis and Ryan Torain, center Kory Lichtensteiger and cornerback Jack Williams. They all caught on elsewhere and Hillis -- who showed signs of stardom under Shanahan -- has become a star in Cleveland. Promising safety Josh Barrett was lost on waivers because McDaniels didn’t follow normal protocol when the player was put on the injured reserve.
What’s the future of this class? Fox doesn’t have much to work with. Only fullback Spencer Larsen, Clady and Royal remain. They are three good players, but this class had so much promise.
First pick: No. 5, defensive lineman, Glenn Dorsey
Total picks: 12
Stars: Dorsey, left tackle Branden Albert, cornerback Brandon Flowers, running back Jamaal Charles, cornerback Brandon Carr and right tackle Barry Richardson all were key players on the Chiefs’ first AFC West championship team in seven years in 2010.
Duds: There were really not any major whiffs on this list. Third-round pick, tight end Brad Cottam, had dealt with a serious neck injury, but he was showing signs of becoming a decent player before his injury.
The Jared Allen payoff: Albert and Charles were drafted with pieces obtained in the Allen trade with Minnesota. Losing Allen was difficult, but the Chiefs wanted to reload and spend the money it would take to secure Allen. Kansas City received two very good players in the trade. Charles and Albert are the type of talents that can help Kansas City for the much of this decade.
What’s the future of this class? This was the final class of the Carl Peterson era, and it was a good one. A big reason why the Scott Pioli-Todd Haley era looks bright is this class. I’ve heard some league observers say this class was one of the best of its decade. I’m not sure if that will pan out, but if the Chiefs continue to grow as an organization, the 2008 class will be seen as a nucleus draft. It was the best class in the AFC West in 2008.
First pick: No. 4, running back, Darren McFadden
Total picks: 5
Stars: McFadden is the centerpiece of this class. After an injury-plagued two-year start to his NFL career, McFadden became the player he was expected to be when Oakland took him. The former Arkansas star was one of the NFL’s most dynamic running backs in 2010. He is very versatile, and he is a matchup headache. He’s a bright spot for this organization. Safety Tyvon Branch has a nice future. He was better in 2009 than in 2010, but he’s a keeper. Pass-rusher Trevor Scott (sixth round) and receiver Chaz Schilens (seventh round) have potential to be good players.
Duds: McFadden was in danger of being known as a bust, but that notion is off the table. The only pick from this class not on the roster is receiver Arman Shields. He never played for Oakland and that hurt because he was a fourth-round pick, but it wasn’t a colossal loss.
Hall trade hurt: The Raiders gave up second- and fifth-round picks to Atlanta for cornerback DeAngelo Hall. He played eight games in Oakland before the Raiders shocked the league and cut him because of a sluggish start. That second-round pick would have been nice to keep around.
What’s the future of this class? It could end up being a dandy even though it was such a small class. McFadden looks like a star. If Branch can make strides and if Scott and Schilens can become reliable contributors, this will end up being a solid class.
First pick: No. 28, cornerback, Antoine Cason
Total picks: 5
Stars: Cason is the best of this small, uninspiring class. Cason started for the first time in 2010 and showed great promise. He took over for the traded Antonio Cromartie. The assignment wasn’t too big for Cason at all.
Duds: The worst part of this class is that there just wasn't enough that came out of it. Only Cason and fullback/special teams player Jacob Hester are still with the team. The other three picks, taken in the fifth, sixth and seventh rounds, never made any contribution.
Was Hester worth it? San Diego traded a second-round pick in 2009 and a fifth-round pick in 2008 to take Hester with the No. 69 pick of the draft. San Diego general manager A.J. Smith said at the time that Hester was a longtime target. He replaced Michael Turner, who went to free agency. Hester hasn’t developed into a consistent rushing threat. But he plays often and he has a role on the team. The development of 2008 undrafted rookie Mike Tolbert has limited Hester’s role.
What’s the future of this class? The Chargers will have to hope Cason sticks around as a long-term starter. That way, San Diego could be getting something from this class. This, overall, was the worst class of the division in 2008. Saving this class are undrafted players Tolbert, who could soon get a lucrative new deal from the team, and offensive lineman Brandyn Dombrowski, who provides valuable depth.
Is this finally the year that it will work?
The following is a look at some possible solutions and continued issues for Oakland as it enters the season with the odor of an NFL-record seven straight years with at least 11 losses. Oakland is a stunning 29-83 during that time.
Reasons for hope
Quarterback play: Oakland surely will be better at the most important position on the field. The Raiders, who considered several quarterback options throughout the offseason, added Jason Campbell in a trade with Washington on draft weekend.
The Raiders then cut JaMarcus Russell. The No. 1 overall draft pick in 2007 will go down as one of the greatest busts in NFL history.
Russell was 7-18 as the Raiders’ starter and regressed in 2009. The Raiders were rarely competitive with him on the field and were much spunkier with journeyman Bruce Gradkowski at the helm.
Campbell is far from a great player. He quarterbacked a 4-12 team last year and was cast aside this offseason by new Redskins coach and noted quarterback guru Mike Shanahan. But in Oakland, the hard-working Campbell should be an upgrade. He has a good arm and he fits Oakland’s vertical scheme. He is also a solid game manager. Campbell may not win games by himself, but he won’t lose many either.
With a decent running game, an excellent tight end in Zach Miller and promising young receivers Chaz Schilens, Louis Murphy and Darrius Heyward-Bey, Campbell should have a positive impact on the offense.
“Campbell is not fancy, but he’ll make Oakland better,” said Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. “The Raiders will be competent at the position and you couldn’t say that in the past.”
A young stud at linebacker: The Raiders were pretty quiet in the offseason until the draft. Other than Campbell, Oakland’s only major acquisition of 2010 who could make an immediate impact was middle linebacker Rolando McClain. The Raiders took McClain with the No. 8 overall pick.
The Raiders have earned a reputation for whiffing in the first round in recent years. I don’t think this will be an issue with McClain. Expect him to be an instant impact player. He was a key to Alabama’s national championship team and was known as one of the most instinctive and brightest players in college football. He called defensive audibles himself, a rarity in the college game.
The Raiders’ run defense needs plenty of help, and McClain should be a huge addition. He will be a big upgrade over Kirk Morrison, who was traded to Jacksonville two days after McClain was drafted.
» NFC Final Word: East | West | North | South » AFC: East | West | North | South
Five nuggets of knowledge about Week 14:
Will the Broncos fare better against Manning this time? Peyton Manning has long been a Bronco killer. The Colts' quarterback has sliced this team up in the regular season and postseason. In two playoff games, after the 2003 and 2004 seasons, Manning was brilliant against Denver, throwing for 835 yards and nine touchdowns. Denver, though, has an improved pass defense this season. The Broncos have the No. 2 pass defense in the NFL, allowing an average of 180.2 yards per game.
Raiders miss a chance to get revenge on Hall: Cornerback DeAngelo Hall was a disaster in his eight-game tenure with the Raiders last season. However, Oakland won’t get an opportunity to pay Hall back for his lousy tenure in Oakland. He is out of Sunday’s game with a knee injury. Oakland gave up two draft picks and a huge contract to Hall. But he never fit in with the Raiders and was cut. Hall cost the Raiders $8 million for eight lackluster games.
Can Cassel bounce back? Kansas City quarterback Matt Cassel will try to bounce back from perhaps his worst game as an NFL player. Cassel was awful Sunday against mentor Josh McDaniels and the Broncos in a 31-point Kansas City loss. Cassel completed 10 of 29 passes for 84 yards and was intercepted twice. He was yanked in the third quarter with the game out of hand. Cassel had been making steady strides before the disaster against Denver. He needs to bounce back.
Will Phillips upend the Chargers? Dallas coach Wade Phillips is very familiar with the Chargers. He was their defensive coordinator before leaving to become the head coach in Dallas in 2007. Many people think Phillips would have been the choice to replace the fired Marty Schottenheimer instead of Norv Turner had Phillips not left for Dallas before Schottenheimer was fired. Phillips is familiar with the Chargers’ offensive players. Expect him to go back to the future and throw some wrinkles at the Chargers.
Five nuggets of knowledge about Week 10:
Chargers hope Eagles’ West Coast blues continue: The Philadelphia Eagles head back to California for the second time in four weeks. They don’t have fond memories of their previous trip to the Golden State. Philadelphia played its worst game of the season by far in a 13-9 loss at Oakland. The Eagles were awful in the game and had no chance of beating any team in the league that day. The Chargers need to win Sunday in the suddenly tight AFC West race. So, the Chargers hope the cross-country trip isn’t kind to the Eagles again.
Raiders are jazzed about Chaz: The Raiders are getting receiver Chaz Schilens back Sunday against the Chiefs. He has been out since August with a broken foot. The Raiders desperately need Schilens, who has potential to be a solid No. 1 receiver. Rookie starters Darrius Heyward-Bey and Louis Murphy have struggled and the Raiders have thrown the second fewest passes to their receivers, according to ESPN Stats & Information. With Schilens back, perhaps Oakland will allow JaMarcus Russell to target his receivers more.
Can Chambers beat the Raiders again? Receiver Chris Chambers has a chance to go 3-0 against the Raiders this season. Chambers was with the Chargers when they beat the Raiders twice this season. Chambers played a big part in the team’s second win. He made a tremendous catch over Oakland star cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha to continue a key drive in the fourth quarter. Many Chargers called it the play of the game. It was Chambers’ final catch with San Diego. He was cut the next day and then claimed by Kansas City. In his Kansas City debut last week, Chambers had three catches, two of which went for touchdowns. He looks like he has a chance to be a standout for Kansas City. The Raiders will surely be weary of him Sunday.
Will Hall get the Royal treatment again? Denver coach Josh McDaniels is all about exploiting matchups. Expect him to unleash receiver Eddie Royal at Washington cornerback DeAngelo Hall. In the season opener of 2008, Royal torched Hall, who was playing his first game with Oakland. Royal had nine catches for 146 yards against Hall, who lost his cool after being embarrassed by the rookie. Royal never got a chance to frustrate Hall later in the season. By the time Denver and Oakland met again, the Raiders gave up on Hall. Royal is likely itching to get another chance to exploit Hall.
Posted by ESPN.com’s Bill Williamson
One of the major risks for Oakland trading a 2011 first-round pick to New England for defensive lineman Richard Seymour on Sunday is the fact that Seymour is a free agent after this season.
It would be embarrassing and it would set the franchise back if Seymour were to leave after 16 games in Oakland at the steep price of a first-round pick.
But the more I think about it, I fully expect the Raiders to try to convince Seymour to stay by offering him a rich contract. I wouldn’t be surprised if contract extension talks with Seymour have already commenced.
Let’s face it: The Raiders don’t mind giving up big dollars.
Cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha and punter Shane Lechler were both given record contracts this year to stay out of free agency. Last year, as part of a trade with Atlanta, Oakland gave a ridiculous $72 million deal to cornerback DeAngelo Hall. He lasted eight games in Oakland.
Seymour is a better player than Hall, but he is 29 and he has a history of injuries. He doesn’t have a whole lot of quality time left in his career. So, if Oakland gives him a fat deal to save face on this trade, it could cripple the team down the road.
Yes, there are risks in this deal and Seymour’s future contract status is at the top of the list. But if the Raiders' history is any indication, expect them to do what it takes to keep Seymour in Oakland.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
It is being reported the Raiders are bringing in Derrick Brooks in for a visit. The linebacker visited New Orleans this week. The Raiders would likely only use Brooks in a limited role. But he would bring good leadership if signed.
- LaDainian Tomlinson believes he's likely going to play Saturday against Seattle, which would be a rare preseason romp for the star San Diego tailback.
- The new Arrowhead Stadium forgot its history.
- Former Oakland cornerback DeAngelo Hall was critical of Al Davis once again. I'm of the opinion that Hall should move on. After all, he was a complete bust in Oakland. He did nothing to change the losing culture there. All he did was collect $8 million for eight games of lackluster service. He doesn't need to complain about his Oakland days.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
Eddie Royal impresses his new coach.
My take: Royal has the goods. I think new Denver coach Josh McDaniels is going to have a lot of fun designing plays for Royal. He could have a Wes Welker-like impact in Denver's offense. Welker thrived under McDaniels in New England. Royal is one of new Denver quarterback Kyle Orton's best chances for success.
Clancy Pendergast is taking control of the Chiefs' defense.
My take: Pendergast is one of the most innovative, creative defensive coordinators in the league. And he'll need to be. The Chiefs' defense is young in key places and has no proven pass rush. There are some intriguing pieces to this unit, but Pendergast has a tough job ahead of him.
There is competition at right cornerback.
My take: Stanford Routt is pushing Chris Johnson at the position. Johnson did well after the Raiders cut DeAngelo Hall last season. If Routt can finally become a major player in this defense, it will only help the team. I could see a situation where both Johnson and Routt get significant playing time.
Jacques Cesaire is enjoying his new role.
My take: The Chargers thinks Cesaire, who has been a productive role player, will excel in a starting role. He will take over for Igor Olshansky, who departed to Dallas as a free agent. Cesaire will likely get some help in the rotation, but expect him to play well.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
As part of our all-decade week, our Football Outsiders put together a list of the overrated and underrated players of the decade. Here is a look at some of the listed players who played in the AFC West:
3. Chris Chambers, San Diego
My take: Chambers has been hurt a lot for San Diego. I don't know if he belongs this high on the list.
9. Dante Hall, Kansas City
My take: Sure, hall has his shortcomings, but he was a brilliant returner while with the Chiefs. This is a little harsh.
10. DeAngelo Hall, Oakland
My take: I think he should be much higher on the list. He was exposed in his short Oakland stint.
24. Travis Henry, Denver
My take: I really don't think the troubled Henry was overrated. I just thought he was a waste of talent.
25. All Denver punters
My take: Can't argue. What would Shane Lechler be like in the Mile High City?
2. Matt Lepsis, Denver
My take: I covered Lepsis for four seasons. He was very underrated. He was a terrific player in his prime.
12. Al Wilson, Denver
My take: At first, I was surprised to see Wilson's name on the underrated list. I thought he was a recognized player. But the fact that Denver's defense has been a disaster since his 2006 career-ending neck injury is a point well taken.
25. Trent Green, Kansas City
My take: Green was hurt often, but he was, indeed, an effective player when healthy.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
Our periodic AFC West position rankings continue with the best defensive backs in the AFC West, in my opinion:
1. Nnamdi Asomugha, Oakland: Nnamdi has become, I believe, the best cornerback in the NFL. He is the definition of a shut-down cornerback.
2. Champ Bailey, Denver: Bailey is going to turn 31 Monday, and he is coming off an injury-filled season. Still, he is brilliant. This is a first-ballot Hall of Famer who is still a top player.
3. Quentin Jammer, San Diego: There is a pretty big drop off from No. 2 to No. 3, but Jammer is a good player. He had a nice season in 2008.
4. Antonio Cromartie, San Diego: Cromartie probably won't be No. 4 on this list next year. He'll either bounce back from a poor 2008 or he'll continue to slip. Yet, the team thinks he will improve because he played with a hip injury nearly all of last season.
5. Brian Dawkins, Denver: Dawkins may be much lower on this list next year if his play drops at the age of 35. But he still brings plenty of panache to Denver.
6. Eric Weddle, San Diego: Weddle is a fine player, who made a ton of tackles for the Chargers last season. Expect continued improvement.
7. Antoine Cason, San Diego: If Cromartie slips, Cason can take his job. The sky is the limit for this second-year player.
8. Jarrad Page, Kansas City: Page is a solid safety, who has play-making ability.
9. Brandon Flowers, Kansas City: Flowers made nice strides as a rookie last season. He has a chance to be a fine player.
10. Andre Goodman, Denver: Denver signed Goodman as a free agent this offseason. He is a solid pro.
12. Brandon Carr, Kansas City: Like Flowers, Carr looked promising as a rookie cornerback last season. He has nice potential.
Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson
Here is a look at the Chiefs starting lineup during an offseason workout Monday. This means very little, but it is interesting to look at.
Expect the young Kansas City lineup to change often in the next few months as the new Kansas City coaching staff tries to move forward.
Highlights included No. 3 overall draft pick Tyson Jackson being in the starting lineup and Larry Johnson being the starting running back. More and more, it looks like Johnson will likely be kept by the Chiefs.
The Chargers also started their OTAs on Monday. It appears it was a fairly sedate affair.
Cornerback DeAngelo Hall took a shot at his short Oakland stint in a radio interview. Hall made $8 million for eight games of service in Oakland last season before he was cut.
Former Oakland coach John Madden reiterates he has no intention of joining an NFL team now that he has retired from the broadcast booth.
ESPN's John Clayton is reporting that the Patriots are considering trading for Oakland defensive end Derrick Burgess. Burgess has long wanted a new contract. The Raiders drafted several pass rushers this year, so perhaps a Burgess deal could soon be in the works.