<
>

Colossal waste for Kolb, Smith, Jackson

If anything, the three NFC West teams with new starting quarterbacks for 2011 should have additional practice time with their new passers.

Thanks to the lockout and legalese, the Arizona Cardinals, Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers have significantly less time to get their quarterbacks acclimated.

Rules associated with the pending labor agreement prevent Arizona's Kevin Kolb, Seattle's Tarvaris Jackson and San Francisco's Alex Smith from practicing before Aug. 4. No players with new contracts for 2011 can practice until that date, which marks the projected start for a new league year.

Coaches aren't happy about the restrictions.

"Back in the day when I was at Minnesota, Bud Grant had a system where he would bring his team together nine days before the first game of the preseason and everybody thought that was the craziest thing in the world, but Bud had continuity," said Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, whose team opens the exhibition season Aug. 11.

Teams with new quarterbacks obviously lack continuity. Changes in the NFC West have gone quite a bit further. Jackson, Sidney Rice, Robert Gallery and Brandon Mebane were among the high-profile Seahawks watching practice Saturday. They can attend meetings, but workouts are not allowed.

"I mean, what are they going to do?" Carroll said. "They want to practice. They’re ready to go. They need to get out there. All of the things that are important to take care of them is at stake right now.