AFC West: Sami Parker

AFC West news and notes

August, 27, 2009
Posted by's Bill Williamson

Jay Cutler said all the right things about his former coach (for a few weeks, anyway) Josh McDaniels and his former city, Denver. Cutler and the Chicago Bears visit Denver on Sunday in a preseason game.

Cutler has had trouble saying the right things this year concerning Denver. Now he finally gets it. I think he just wants get this preseason game over with and move on. Not stirring the pot this week is a way of helping make the trip as smooth as possible.

Here is a report that says Jacksonville is offering Kansas City a fifth-rounder for No. 3 quarterback Tyler Thigpen. The Chiefs may not do better than that. They might want to consider that deal.

San Diego linebacker Shawne Merriman practiced Wednesday after taking two practices off Tuesday to rest his sore knees.

Oakland cut fullback Lorenzo Neal from the injured reserve after coming to an injury settlement. Oakland began the process to part ways with Neal last week.

The Raiders cut receiver Sami Parker and signed defensive backs Michael Hawkins.

Denver cut running back Marcus Thigpen.

Cornerback Cletis Gordon, cut by the Chargers this week, went through waivers unclaimed. He is free to sign with any team.

Around the AFC West

May, 12, 2009

Posted by's Bill Williamson

Kansas City

Top pick Tyson Jackson realizes the NFL is tough.

My take: It is going to get a lot tougher, Tyson. You just finished a rookie minicamp. Wait until training camp and the regular season. You better be prepared, though, Mr. Jackson. The Chiefs took you with the No. 3 overall pick and expect you to make an immediate impact at defensive end.


The Raiders have signed receiver Sami Parker after he tried out during last weekend's minicamp.

My take: Parker is a journeyman and he will have to fight to make the roster. But Oakland needs all the help it can get at receiver.

San Diego

San Diego's special teams feel prepared for a rule change.

My take: There was a rule change that limits wedge formations on kickoffs. As San Diego special teams coach Steve Crosby explains, the Chargers weren't much of a wedge team anyway, so it shouldn't be a big problem. San Diego has been one of the better special teams units in the league and I expect it to continue.

Posted by's Bill Williamson

ALAMEDA, Calif. -- First round pick Darrius Heyward-Bey said he is wearing No. 12 to honor a father figure, who recently died. He said Richard Woodley, the father of his close friend, wore No. 12 in high school and in college. He said he hopes to wear the number during the season.

  • I was struck by the personalities of Oakland's draft picks during the minicamp. Teams are drafting for character more and more these days and the early returns in Denver and in Oakland are good.
  • The Raiders didn't throw the ball deep much last season. However, during Friday's morning practice, they aired it out often. Oakland quarterback JaMarcus Russell looks to be in good shape. Last year, he battled rumors about his weight.
  • Running back Darren McFadden looked great. He has a quick burst. If he can stay healthy, watch for a big year from the second-year player. McFadden split out as a receiver on some plays Friday.
  • Receiver Javon Walker is out until training camp after yet another knee surgery. I wouldn't be shocked if Walker ends up missing significant playing time because of injury for the fourth time in five seasons. Walker's health may be one of the reasons why Oakland signed receiver Sami Parker on Friday.
  • Rookie receivers Heyward-Bey and Louis Murphy, a fourth-round pick, met on a visit to Maryland. Heyward-Bey went to Maryland and Murphy went to Florida.
  • The Raiders still have Marquis Cooper's name on their roster. He was lost at sea in March after a fishing trip in Florida.
  • Russell said he is learning a lot from new backup quarterback Jeff Garcia.
  • Tight end Zach Miller is recovering from a sports hernia is expected to be ready for training camp.
  • If the Raiders pursue Bay Area native Travis LaBoy it may be down the road. The pass rusher, who was just cut from Arizona, is recovering from an injury and he likely won't sign anywhere for several weeks.