Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Black and Blue all over: Grossman's challenge
By Kevin Seifert
Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert
Those of you who plan to follow Rex Grossman's progress in Houston should check out this story from Megan Manfull of the Houston Chronicle. The ex-Chicago quarterback threw three interceptions in his first practice with the team Monday.
Manfull's story paints a relatively bleak picture for Grossman's immediate future. He's competing for the No. 3 quarterback spot on a team that hasn't had one for two years. That could change with the departure of reliable backup Sage Rosenfels, but for now Matt Schaub is the starter and former Detroit quarterback Dan Orlovsky is No. 2.
Here's what Texans coach Gary Kubiak said of Grossman's chances for making the team:
"After what I've been through the last two years, [three quarterbacks] might be the way I would lean today. But we have a long way to go, a lot of players to evaluate. And if I'm going to keep them, I'm going to keep them because they all can play. I'm not just going to keep them just so I have three bodies."
Most teams tap a young, developmental-type player at No. 3 rather than a veteran. But Grossman admitted he didn't have much choice but to accept Houston's offer.
Grossman: "There wasn't a whole lot of teams to choose from, to be honest. But I'm excited to be here, and I'm going to work as hard as I can to get back on top."
Continuing around the NFC North:
- Green Bay knocked out three contracts for its draft class Tuesday but hasn't started negotiations for its pair of first-round picks, writes Tom Pelissero of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
- Mike Vandermause of the Press-Gazette paraphrases a call he received from a Packers fan about the possibility of quarterback Brett Favre signing with Minnesota. "The disillusioned caller used words like disgusting, selfish and scumbag to describe Favre. The man said he gave his undying support to Favre for 16 years, and in return, the quarterback 'spits in our face.'"
- The Favre-Vikings courtship should be concluded -- one way or the other -- by the last week of July, writes Judd Zulgad of the Star Tribune.
- Vikings linebacker Ben Leber tells Zulgad he was struck by Favre's use of the world "we" during a television interview Monday night. Leber: "That really stuck in my mind because he's already including himself."
- Free-agent defensive lineman Kevin Carter has visited Detroit but isn't close to making a decision about 2009, writes Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press.
- Lions coach Jim Schwartz might want to move training camp away from the team's practice facility in 2010, according to Doug Guthrie and John Clayton of the Detroit News. One possibility is Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Mich.
- Former Lions receiver Charles Rogers is still hoping to return to the NFL, according to Hugh Bernreuter of Mlive.com. Rogers: "There's nothing concrete [about the NFL], just speculative. But if a team gives me a tryout, I know I'm going to be ready. I'm in better shape now than I was before."