AFC West: Vince Young

NFL.com reports that the Kansas City Chiefs have interest in signing left tackle Branden Albert to a new deal now that trade talks with the Miami Dolphins have died.

Albert
Albert
I am sure Albert would be interested in a long-term contract, but the Chiefs need to figure out if they are comfortable with No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher playing right tackle for the long term. He is expected to play there during Albert’s free-agent year, then return to left tackle, where he played in college. Albert has made it clear he does not want to play right tackle.

If the Chiefs eventually want Fisher to play left tackle, it could make it difficult to re-sign Albert. What does it all mean? Everything is still on the table. This news doesn’t change much.

In other AFC West notes:

The Raiders are no longer interested in free-agent quarterback Vince Young, NFL.com notes. That became obvious when Oakland drafted Arkansas’ Tyler Wilson in the fourth round. Young recently worked out the Raiders.

The Broncos are not renewing the contract of director of pro personnel Keith Kidd. He was a holdover of the Josh McDaniels era and didn’t have a ton of power.

San Diego general manager Tom Telesco held a conference call with several season-ticket holders Wednesday.
The Oakland Raiders made most of the headlines in the division last week while I was on vacation. The Raiders made several signings, and like earlier moves, these moves are inexpensive additions in an attempt to fill the roster.

Let’s review some of the moves.

One of the moves, of course, that stood out was the signing of former Dallas cornerback Mike Jenkins. Like former Denver cornerback Tracy Porter, who was previously signed, Jenkins is projected to start this season after signing a one-year deal.

Both players have had NFL success but both fell into backup roles. Still, I like the two signings for Oakland on a short-term basis. They have experience and they will compete. It’s a better pairing than the Ron Bartell-Shawntae Spencer pairing to start last year.

I do not think the Jenkins signing means Oakland will definitely bypass Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner at No. 3. These signing are show-me deals for the team. Oakland still has big long-term needs at cornerback.

The signing of former Cleveland safety Usama Young should help as well in the short term. In the grand scheme, Young is an average player, but he played for Oakland head coach Dennis Allen in New Orleans, and he has experience. It’s all about filling the roster with as many capable players as possible and Young is capable.

The re-signing of pass-rusher Andre Carter also makes sense. He gave the team some burst after signing during last season and he is a leader. He will have a limited role, but Oakland needs all the pass-rush help it can get.

I wasn’t overly impressed by the signing of backup running back Rashad Jennings. He is simply a backup. We all know Darren McFadden’s injury history. I doubt Jennings can be an effective starter.

Also, it was interesting that Oakland worked out former NFL starting quarterback Vince Young. Oakland is looking for a veteran backup quarterback, so perhaps Young could end up getting another chance there. I’m not one to think Young can be an effective player, but if Oakland is intrigued, perhaps it will give him a chance at some point.

AFC West links: Chief likes regime, new QB

April, 12, 2013
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Denver Broncos

The Denver Post's Jeff Legwold says don't look for the Broncos to use a fullback in the near future.

Apparently Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas, Eric Decker and Wes Welker are having a blast working out at Duke University. The team's website gives you an inside look, including shooting hoops at famed Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Kansas City Chiefs

The team's website continues its look at draft prospects with former Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd.

Pro Bowl linebacker Derrick Johnson has high praise for the Chiefs' new regime and quarterback Alex Smith.

Adam Teicher of the Kansas City Star says to expect the Chiefs to begin the regular season with a road game.

Oakland Raiders

Quarterback Vince Young "looked good" in his workout with the Raiders on Thursday, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport.

Prosecutors have decided not to file any charges against Raiders wide receiver Jacoby Ford after he was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated last month.

Running back Rashad Jennings, who signed with the Raiders on Thursday, is looking to prove himself after averaging just 2.8 yards per carry last season in Jacksonville.

San Diego Chargers

The team's website profiles draft prospect Eric Reid, a free safety out of LSU.

For the third straight draft, a running back could join the Chargers in the late rounds, writes Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune.
The Oakland Raiders’ search for a cornerback is taking the next step.

Denver cornerback Tracy Porter is visiting the Raiders on Wednesday, according to an NFL source. He visited the New Orleans Saints on Monday. Both teams have strong interest in Porter. He is expected to decide his future soon. He left the Saints for Denver last year. He fell out of favor in Denver. Oakland head coach Dennis Allen was Porter’s position coach in New Orleans.

Meanwhile, Dallas cornerback Mike Jenkins is visiting Jacksonville. Oakland reportedly also has interest in Jenkins. Oakland has two starting cornerback openings. It has visited with Terence Newman. He has been expected to decide between the Bengals and the Raiders for several days.

In other AFC West news:

Former Oakland punter Shane Lechler told San Francisco radio station, 95.7 The Game that he was surprised Oakland did not pursue him. He signed with Houston on Friday.

“This was my first time in free agency. To tell you the truth, man it’s nerve-racking,” Lechler told the radio station. “I didn’t know where I was going to go, where I was going to live or where my kids were going to go to school. I wasn’t hearing anything from Oakland. After giving them 13 years, and plus what the Davis family has done for me, I thought I would at least have a conversation with someone there or something before all of this went down. That was the frustrating part of it. I can’t say that I turned a contract down or anything because I was never really offered one. That was frustrating but I understand. Reggie’s running that thing now like he wants to run it and it’s pretty safe to say I don’t believe I was in the plans.”

Lecher, who was making $4 million a season in Oakland, signed a three-year, $5.5 million deal with Houston. Lechler is from Texas. Oakland is expected to give talented, but unproven Marquette King a chance to replace Lechler.
The NFL Network offered an interesting nugget when it reported the Raiders have had preliminary contact with former NFL quarterback Vince Young about a workout.

While Young’s name evokes some surprise, I wouldn’t get too hopped up about it. We’re just talking about a workout.

If somehow Young does find his way in position to be offered a job in Oakland, it wouldn’t be anything more than a backup gig, whether it is caddying for Carson Palmer or Terrelle Pryor.

Meanwhile, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting Chicago linebacker Nick Roach is visiting the Raiders. He started 14 games last season and had 66 tackles. The Raiders have plenty of needs on defense, and linebackers are among them. ESPN’s John Clayton also reports the Raiders are visiting with Bengals’ reserve defensive tackle Pat Sims.

In other AFC West notes:

NFL Network repots the Chargers are showing interest in cornerback Captain Munnerlyn.
It’s safe this week for Philip Rivers to knock off some late preseason rust in a final tune-up before the start of the regular season.

U-T San Diego is reporting that Chargers coach Norv Turner said Rivers and tight end Antonio Gates will play some Thursday night at San Francisco. Usually, starters play extensively in the third preseason and little if at all in the final preseason game.

However, Rivers and Gates were held out of Friday's Minnesota game. The Chargers were without three starting offensive linemen, so keeping Rivers out was the smart move. Getting him some work against the 49ers is also the smart move, because it would not be wise for Rivers to face Oakland on Sept. 10 without the benefit of playing for three-plus weeks.

In other AFC West news:
  • U-T San Diego confirmed receiver/kick returner Roscoe Parrish has been cut. It’s not a surprise Parrish was outplayed by fellow newcomer receiver/returner Michael Spurlock. He should make the team.
  • Kansas City cornerback Brandon Flowers is still not practicing because of a foot injury he suffered July 31. With the regular season starting in 13 days, it is safe to say Flowers is in jeopardy of missing the opener against the pass-happy Falcons.
  • Buffalo released quarterback Vince Young. While none of the backup quarterback situations in the AFC West are great, I don’t see any of the teams in the division running to sign Young.
  • Warring Raiders’ fans, you may not like this story.
With Peyton Manning coming and Tim Tebow going out, the Broncos still are not settled at the quarterback position.

Who is going to be Manning's backup?

Denver could always opt to keep Tebow, but ESPN has reported the team will try to trade him. They may even release him if they don’t find a trade partner.

The matter of Manning’s backup is significant. Manning passed the Broncos’ physical and he has been cleared to play in 2012 after missing all of last season with a neck injury. But there has to be a backup plan.

There aren’t too many great options out there. The top backup options are Byron Leftwich, Matt Leinart, Charlie Batch Donovan McNabb, Vince Young, Billy Volek, Josh Johnson and Dennis Dixon. Of that group, I think Volek -- who was released by the Chargers last week -- could be the best option. He is a serviceable player in a pinch.

Denver could always draft a quarterback to groom behind Manning. Manning, who turns 36 Saturday, probably has at least three solid seasons remaining in him if his neck holds up.

It might be a little early to draft a quarterback in the early rounds and I think Denver is now out of the Brandon Weeden mix. Denver has closely scouted him, but he will be 29 during the season. There is little chance Denver will take a quarterback who may not be in the position to start until he is well in his 30s.
Last week, we looked at rookie quarterbacks who may be a good fit for the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs.

Both teams are expected to add a quarterback during the offseason. Let’s take a look at the current unrestricted free agents, who could intrigue either team. The list doesn’t include the Colts’ Peyton Manning. But once he is cut, expect both teams to at least consider signing him with the Chiefs being the more likely of the two teams.

Jason Campbell: I could see the former Raiders starter in Kansas City. He played for Chiefs’ quarterbacks coach Jim Zorn for two years in Washington.

Dennis Dixon: He could be a backup option in Denver if the Broncos are looking for a mobile quarterback.

David Garrard: He may be rusty after sitting out the 2011 season and he won’t be a top option. But he is an experienced backup that could fit in with either team.

Chad Henne: There has been talk Denver will be interested and he could push Tim Tebow. Kansas City could also be interested. He played for new Kansas City offensive coordinator Brian Daboll last season.

Shaun Hill: I could see him being on Denver’s list as a backup.

Josh Johnson: Denver could look at him as a backup to Tebow.

Byron Leftwich: Like Garrard and Hill, he is an experienced backup who could be interesting for Denver if other options don’t develop.

Kyle Orton: If he doesn’t get a better option, Orton could come back to Kansas City and try to take Matt Cassel's job.

Brady Quinn: I doubt he returns to Denver, but if other options don’t pan out in Kansas City, he could be looked at as a backup. He played for Chiefs’ coach Romeo Crennel in Cleveland.

Sage Rosenfels: Put him in the Garrard, Hill, Leftwich category for Denver.

Vince Young: Giving Tebow a similar backup would be compelling and you never know, maybe the light would finally come on for Young in Denver.
Jason Campbell in Kansas City? Vince Young in Denver? According to these predictions, yes, that’s where these free-agent quarterbacks will land.

Campbell could be an interesting option for the Chiefs. He would reunite with Jim Zorn, who is Kansas City’s quarterbacks coach. Zorn was Washington’s head coach in 2008-09 when Campbell was the starter. The Chiefs’ brass has said Matt Cassel will get competition this season. Fellow free agent Kyle Orton finished the season as Kansas City’s starter.

Cassel, Campbell and Orton are all comparable players and it comes done to personal preference. Perhaps Campbell would be intrigued by playing with Zorn. I’m sure, like Orton, Campbell would rather sign where he is the unquestioned starter, but that may not be possible.

Meanwhile, the Young connection to Denver would be interesting as a backup to Tim Tebow. Both players are mobile and teams like their backup to have a similar game to their starter for continuity.

Free agency starts March 13. Will these quarterback parings happen? We’ll see, but it’s interesting to consider in mid-February.

In other AFC West news:

San Diego general manager A.J. Smith talks about the team’s plans in free agency.

Kansas City coach Romeo Crennel is counting the days until he can get his team on the field.

Is Carson Palmer worth the price?

October, 18, 2011
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There’s no doubt Carson Palmer was the best available quarterback for the Oakland Raiders, who are trying to keep their playoff hopes alive in the aftermath of losing Jason Campbell, possibly for the season, to a broken collarbone.

But the question that will define the Raiders for the next few years is: Is Palmer worth the steep price the Raiders paid Cincinnati to get him?

[+] EnlargeCarson Palmer
Matthew Stockman/Getty ImagesCarson Palmer's numbers have declined since 2006 -- will a change of scenery reverse the trend?
The Raiders sent the Bengals their first-round pick in 2012 and a conditional pick in 2013 -- a pick that will be a first-rounder if the Raiders win the AFC title game this season or next. (If they don't, the 2013 pick is a second-rounder.) That is a huge commitment for a player who will turn 32 this year, hasn’t played since last season and has been in decline.

Yet the Raiders, who had Vince Young as their backup plan to Palmer, think Palmer is the best quarterback for them as they move forward. A lot of it has to do with the familiarity between Palmer and Oakland coach Hue Jackson. Jackson coached Palmer both at USC and in Cincinnati.

Palmer has a big arm, and he’s accurate. He should benefit from the Raiders’ athletic group of young receivers. Plus, Oakland has the NFL’s best rushing team.

But can he still be productive?

Palmer, who has completed 62.9 percent of his career passes, struggled in 2010. He threw 20 interceptions. His 23 turnovers were the fourth most among all NFL quarterbacks, according to ESPN Stats & Information. His last statistically strong season was in 2007, the season before he missed 12 games with a serious elbow injury. Jackson last coached Palmer in 2006.

Palmer’s completion percentage, yards per attempt, yards per game and touchdown-to-interception ratio have slipped in the past three years, according to ESPN Stats & Information. From 2004 to '07, Palmer threw 104 touchdowns. He has thrown 50 touchdown passes the past three seasons combined. Palmer's Total QBR for 2010 was 46.2, good for 25th best in the NFL.

Since 2008, Palmer has struggled against seven or more defenders in coverage, according to ESPN Stats & Information. He's averaged 6.5 yards per attempt in those situations, which is 29th best in the NFL.

Campbell was efficient in the Raiders' offense because he was a good game manger and didn’t make many mistakes. Palmer will have to improve on his recent spate of poor decision-making. The trade is risky considering the price it cost Oakland -- veterans such as Kyle Orton and Donovan McNabb likely could have been had for much less.

Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. doesn’t think Palmer is a top player anymore.

“Palmer does fit the offense, and I think he might, might, be an upgrade over Campbell,” Williamson said. “But I think Oakland way overpaid for an older quarterback that really has not played well for the past few years. He used to be an elite passer, but I haven’t seen that in quite a while. He doesn’t move well. I do think a change of scenery will help him. But he also had led the league in near-interceptions, and his decision-making is just average. He isn’t close to what he once was.”

Chargers add pass rusher

July, 29, 2011
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Let’s catch up on some AFC West happenings that occurred during the flurry of Oakland activity:

The Chargers signed pass-rusher Travis LaBoy to a two-year deal. He was with new San Diego defensive coordinator Greg Manusky in San Francisco. LaBoy is a good, situational player. It’s a nice pickup. He is the second former 49er the Chargers agreed to terms with this week. Inside linebacker Takeo Spikes was added Tuesday.

More talk that the Broncos-Dolphins trade talk involving quarterback Kyle Orton is dead for now. It looks like Orton will be in Denver, unless another team's starter gets hurt.

Denver prized rookie linebacker Von Miller suffered a minor injury and had to leave practice. He is day-to-day.

Keep on an eye on former New England defensive tackle Ty Warren in Kansas City. He played for Chiefs’ general manager Scot Pioli and Chiefs’ defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel with the Patriots. He could be a good rotation player.

In addition to Nnamdi Asomugha, the Eagles brought in former Raiders’ returner Johnnie Lee Higgins.

The Football Outsiders analyze the Asomugha signing.

The Jets brought out the big guns for Asomugha and still couldn’t land him.

Vince Young will not be coming to the AFC West.

The Chiefs re-signed running back Jackie Battle, tackle Ryan O’Callaghan, tight end Leonard Pope and they announced fullback Mike Cox signed his restricted free agent tender and safety Reshard Langford signed his exclusive rights free agent tender.

Early a.m. AFC West notes

July, 29, 2011
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Early, I mean early, morning AFC West notes:

Here is a report that says Vince Young is almost a slam-dunk to join the Eagles. ESPN’s Adam Schefter said Thursday he thought Oakland could be a good spot for Young.

What does Denver cornerback Champ Bailey think of the idea of Nnamdi Asomugha and Darrelle Revis teaming with the Jets: “That would be crazy,” Bailey said. “I don’t think that’s legal.”

Here’s a prediction that Asomugha will become a Jet later Friday. Wherever he goes, let’s hope this saga ends shortly.

The San Diego Union Tribune reports Chargers’ third-round pick Vincent Brown has signed.

Meanwhile, the Vikings’ continue to be connected with San Diego receiver Malcom Floyd. He is not expected to return to the Chargers.

John Fox will see a familiar face Friday.

It was a lively first day of camp for the Raiders.

Mike Tolbert will sign his tender in San Diego on Friday.
We have to wonder whether Johnathan Joseph's agreement with Houston means Oakland free-agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha is headed to the New York Jets or elsewhere. The Texans were considered a favorite along with the Jets to land Asomugha.

The Texans’ agreement with Joseph means Houston didn’t feel like it could get Asomugha. The Jets reportedly want to hear an answer from the top free-agent prize, one way or another. Here is a thought that Asomugha is holding the Jets hostage. It seems like the Jets are getting antsy and they might soon decide to move away from Asomugha if he doesn’t come to a decision soon.

Of course, as long as he is still out there, the Raiders still have a chance. Could Asomugha be waiting to see whether the Raiders can clear the cap room to sign him? Who knows, but the longer this drags on, the more reasonable a question it becomes.

Meanwhile, no surprise that Kansas City cut receiver Chris Chambers and cornerback Jackie Bates. They clearly weren’t in the team’s plans. Chambers played well when the Chiefs claimed him in the second half of the 2009 season off waivers from San Diego. But he didn’t do much last season.

Greg Olsen's trade from Chicago to Carolina means another tight end is off the market. This hasn’t been a hot market for tight ends, so that is good news for the Raiders, who are trying to keep Zach Miller.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting freshly cut Vince Young wants to play for the Eagles. Earlier in the day, Schefter listed the Eagles and Raiders as potential suitors for the former Titans quarterback.
With Vince Young being cut by Tennessee, naturally, the talk turns to where he could land.

Young
Young
Naturally, the Oakland Raiders are being mentioned as a possible landing spot. On ESPN’s “NFL Live,” Adam Schefter said Philadelphia and Oakland are possible suitors for Young and he could be in a new uniform in the next 24-48 hours. Schefter said both jobs would be as a backup.

I could see why the Raiders are connected to Young. Oakland owner Al Davis loves athletes and he has no problem giving talented players a second chance. So, it would be an interesting scenario to see Young come to the Silver and Black to back up Jason Campbell. The Raiders’ current backup is Kyle Boller, who has the support of coach Hue Jackson.

What do you think? Would you like to see Young in an Oakland uniform? Fill up the comment section below with your thoughts.
The Oakland Tribune has reported the Raiders have signed second-round pick Stefen Wisniewski and have just one more pick to sign, third-round pick Joe Barksdale. He is in Napa and waiting to sign. The Raiders start practice this afternoon. Wisniewski, Oakland’s first pick, is expected to start at center.

He is the nephew of former Oakland offensive lineman Steve Wisniewski, who is an assistant offensive line coach in Oakland. The family has been waiting for this reunion to officially start.

In other AFC West nuggets:

ESPN’s Adam Schefter said on "SportsCenter" the New Orleans Saints could make a run at versatile San Diego running back Darren Sproles now that they traded Reggie Bush to Miami. Sproles would fill Bush’s role in New Orleans.

I haven’t heard Sproles’ name much in the past two days, but because of his ability to rush the ball, receive the ball and return it, he does have value. The Chargers are getting tight against the cap after all their moves and they were resigned to letting Sproles leave. But if the market doesn’t develop for him, perhaps San Diego will revisit him. Yet, the opening in New Orleans could change Sproles’ market quickly.

As expected, Tennessee will cut quarterback Vince Young on Thursday. I could envision his name connected to Oakland in a backup role. But the Raiders do like Kyle Boller.

Denver safety Renaldo Hill was not at the Broncos’ first training camp practice. It could mean the team is planning to cut him later Thursday.

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