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Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Around the NFC West: Advice for Rams

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch offers advice to the Rams in their handling of likely first-round choice Sam Bradford. He thinks offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur, not quarterbacks coach Dick Curl, should be the one overseeing Bradford's development. Miklasz: "This is crucial. I realize that QBs coach Dick Curl is Coach Spagnuolo's friend; Spags served on Curl's staff in the old NFL Europe. But developing quarterbacks isn't Curl's area of expertise. So reassign him. There's no shame in that. Dick Vermeil had two guys on his staff (Mike White, Lynn Stiles) who helped him in a variety of ways behind the scenes. Likewise, Curl can serve as an all-purpose confidant for Spagnuolo. But the Rams can't have Curl in the middle of a vitally important working relationship between Shurmur and Bradford."

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says most trade rumors involving the Rams have been off-base. Thomas: "Of all the (mostly) ridiculous trade rumors involving the Rams this offseason, the only one that I haven't heard (general manager Billy) Devaney deny was the (Adam) Carriker-to-Washington rumor. But I don't think Carriker would fetch much in a trade -- after all, he didn't play at all last season and is coming off shoulder surgery. As for the second-round pick, I think the Rams will get some calls on the pick, since teams will have an entire day to think about it and readjust their boards."

Also from Thomas: Leonard Little doesn't have much going; no surprise with the draft so near. Also, the Rams' long-anticipated signing of Na'il Diggs is all but done.

Howard Balzer of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat says it's unclear whether Diggs will play weak or strong side.

John Niyo of the Detroit News quotes former Seahawks guard Rob Sims as saying Detroit is more of a football town than Seattle. Sims, who played at Ohio State: "This is a football town. Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Detroit. I mean, that's football. Football and cars. This is more of what I'm accustomed to. Out there (in Seattle), the stars are Bill Gates and Paul Allen and the people that run Boeing. This here is what being in the NFL is supposed to be about, (standing) up here at the mic talking to reporters and stuff. In Seattle, it's not like that. It's drinking coffee, sittin' down and chit-chatting. This is a change, but it's a change that I've been looking forward to." Sims surely felt unwanted in Seattle and it had to mystify him. His comments were probably made out of frustration. The comment about the NFL being about standing at microphones and talking to reporters? Hmmmm. We already knew Seattle's line coach, Alex Gibbs, didn't think Sims fit into his zone-blocking scheme. Gibbs is also media-averse, and his linemen in Denver were known for refusing to speak with reporters.

Brian McIntyre of scout.com says the Seahawks want their tight ends to threaten defenses in the passing game, one reason John Owens' release should not come as a surprise.

John Morgan of Field Gulls takes inventory at receiver for Seattle, concluding the position is one of significant need.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic checks in with new Cardinals kicker Jay Feely, who reported for work Monday. Somers: "Feely's contract with the Cardinals is worth $3.5 million, including a $500,000 roster bonus and a $1 million salary this year. In 2011, he is due to make $1.75 million with a $250,000 bonus for attending off-season workouts." Also: Matt Ware's re-signing is official.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says cornerback Michael Adams is helping teammates get acclimated to the offseason program, a role former teammate Ralph Brown often played. Adams: "Ralph always would explain why were doing it. If I can learn something from Ralph, someone can learn something from me, that person can teach someone else, it’s an ongoing cycle and we keep getting pretty good players."

Also from Urban: New Cardinals linebacker Paris Lenon comes from a line of Paris Lenons. His grandfather, father and son share the name. Urban: "The 6-foot-2, 235-pounder fit best when he played his first four seasons in Green Bay (his past four seasons were with the Lions for three before going to the Rams in 2009)."

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee thinks the 49ers will select Anthony Davis at No. 13 if the offensive tackle remains available. Also: "As for (Donovan) McNabb, many writers and NFL observers wondered why the 49ers never entered the No. 5 sweepstakes. I think the overarching reason is that the Alex Smith experiment is five years in the making and, by golly, they're going to see it to the end. To state right now that they made a colossal mistake would be folly. But with Smith entering the final year of his contract, we ought to know the answer by January."

Howard Mintz of the San Jose Mercury News updates the 49ers' efforts to build a stadium in Santa Clara. One of the affected parties could renew concerns.