Around the NFC West: Stan Kroenke's style

August, 25, 2010
8/25/10
10:31
AM ET
Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says the Rams should be fine with Stan Kroenke running the team. Burwell: "You will find that there is no Daniel Snyder in him. Snyder, the owner of the Washington Redskins, is the patron saint of know-nothing control freaks whose egos make them insufferable to live with and whose repeated idiotic business decisions make their teams' league chronic laughing stocks. Kroenke won't be an insufferable little Napoleon like Snyder, and chances are he won't be much like Jerry Jones, the Dallas Cowboys' free-spending, attention-grabbing owner either. That's not Kroenke's style. He's way too low key for that. But everything he has done as both a businessman and sports owner suggests timidity isn't his style either."

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch expects NFL owners to welcome Kroenke as the Rams' majority owner Wednesday. Thomas: "It takes 24 yes votes from the 32 club owners for approval. The finance committee recommendation, particularly because it was unanimous, is a strong indication that Kroenke's bid will be approved. The NFL uses a committee system to do its legwork on a variety of issues, and in many cases team owners are committee members. In this case, New Orleans Saints owner Tom Benson is chairman of the finance committee."

Also from Thomas: a chat transcript featuring these thoughts on rookie quarterback Sam Bradford: "I'd say Bradford has a strong arm, but not a cannon. When it comes to heaving a ball as far as you can downfield, I think I'd even say that Keith Null has a stronger arm. But Bradford can make so many other throws accurately, that Null can't. Bradford's overall release and decision-making -- to me -- seem quicker than A.J. Feeley. And I think this will only improve on Bradford's end as he gets more comfortable with the offense and with the speed of the NFL game." So much of playing quarterback is anticipating throws and making them accurately.

Bill Coats of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch checks in with Rams defensive tackle Gary Gibson. Another Gibson, Brandon, is finally back in the mix at wide receiver.

Steve Korte of the Belleville News-Democrat says Bradford is eager to make his first NFL start.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com says the 49ers fought through triple-digit temperatures on the hottest day of training camp. Also: "Quarterback Alex Smith executed a play fake, then he fired a 29-yard pass over cornerback Tarell Brown toward flanker Josh Morgan, who made a leaping catch in the end zone."

Also from Maiocco: Michael Crabtree was back after missing time with a neck strain.

More from Maiocco: thoughts on Mike Singletary's critique of third-team quarterback Nate Davis in relation to Smith. Maiocco: "Smith has one season to prove himself. This is the final year of his contract. At the end of the season, the 49ers must make a decision: Is the future of the franchise in better hands with Smith or somebody else at quarterback? Davis has to put himself into position to be a legitimate option for the future."

Taylor Price of 49ers.com profiles rookie offensive linemen Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati, who are hanging out together quite a bit these days. Veteran tackle Barry Sims: "There’s a lot of pressure being a first-round pick and it seems like they’re handling the pressure appropriately right now. Those guys both came in ready to work. They’ve put in the extra hours to be ready to go when the season starts. That’s really important. It’s hard as a rookie to learn a new system and how things are done on this level. For them to be able to come in and get things done like they have, it’s a good thing. They have ways to go, but they’re doing everything to close that gap and be ready for the regular season."

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the 49ers' David Baas has had to work on shotgun snaps.

Also from Barrows: no free rides for the 49ers' rookie class.

Phil Barber of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat says Ted Ginn Jr. would like some work on kickoff returns.

Dan Brown of the San Jose Mercury News says the 49ers' Frank Gore could get some work in the third exhibition game.

David White of the San Francisco Chronicle says David Carr is solidly entrenched as the No. 2 quarterback for the 49ers, to the point that he didn't even play in the second exhibition game. This stands in contrast to the approach Arizona and Seattle are taking as their new second-string quarterback learn their offenses. Ken Whisenhunt took out starter Matt Leinart after only nine plays because he wanted to make sure Derek Alexander got work with the first-team offense. Pete Carroll set aside extended reps for Charlie Whitehurst, to the point that third-team quarterback J.P. Losman did not play.

Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com says rookie Dexter Davis is getting lots of work at the "Leo" position in Seattle's defense now that Nick Reed is going to miss time while recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery. Reed has been a steal for the Seahawks as a 2009 seventh-round draft choice from Oregon. However, the fact that he was the No. 2 option at a critical pass-rushing position reveals how much rebuilding remains for the Seahawks. Also, defensive lineman Kentwan Balmer is out indefinitely with a leg contusion.

Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times recounts what went wrong in Seattle over the past few seasons. O'Neil: "Just five seasons after playing for the sport's biggest prize, Seattle is on its third coach in three years. The Seahawks are 9-23 the past two years, failing to win more than five games in back-to-back seasons for the first time since entering the league. The decline cost jobs, it wrecked dreams."

Also from O'Neil: Five factors behind the Seahawks' decline.

More from O'Neil: Brandon Jones sees similarities between the Seahawks' offense and the one he ran in Tennessee.

Greg Johns of seattlepi.com says the Seahawks expect Reed to return in a few weeks.

Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune looks at the Seahawks' options at left tackle now that Russell Okung is out.

John Boyle of the Everett Herald checks in with Seahawks receiver Deion Branch, who says he hasn't been frustrated during his time in Seattle. Branch: "It hasn't been frustrating at all. Not for a second. You've got to understand, this is football, man. I've been saying it for the last two years. ... It's football, it's going to happen, guys will get hurt. You've got to stay positive, take it with a grain of salt and move forward. You can't dwell on it. I'm very thankful that I have a healthy family, and if I can go out and play football, that's a plus."

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com doesn't think Derek Anderson has made enough progress to overtake Matt Leinart as the Cardinals' starting quarterback. Urban: "I am still not convinced, regardless of what happened, that Derek Anderson has been able to pick up enough ground on Leinart to surpass him on the depth chart. Anderson is still new in the system and Leinart knows what he is supposed to do. Leinart still needs to show he can execute, but this staff -- going back to Leinart’s struggles as a starter in 2007 -- isn’t comfortable with guys who don’t know the system."

Also from Urban: The Cardinals are practicing against the Titans this week.

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic says Leinart is blowing his latest opportunity. Bickley: "Evidence is piling up that he's not tough enough to handle the position at the NFL level, particularly between the ears. Teammates are losing faith in his ability to effectively replace Kurt Warner. And if things don't improve quickly, the No. 7 also will be the over/under for Cardinals victories in 2010." Bickley also suggests Larry Fitzgerald isn't eager to get back onto the field until the passing game becomes a little more refined. We're left to sort through what matters and what doesn't matter during exhibition games. Signs of life from Leinart would certainly help change perceptions. The reality is that Leinart remains unproven either way. Nothing he does during the fake games will necessarily translate to the real ones.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals expect a competitive situation in practice against the Titans.

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