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Sunday, January 25, 2009
Around the NFC West: Warner and the Rams

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch provides the definitive history of Kurt Warner's fall as the Rams' starting quarterback. This is a balanced, in-depth account. I had forgotten how bad Warner's injury situation had become in St. Louis, or that the Rams were 18-5 with Marc Bulger and 0-7 with Warner over the 2002 and 2003 seasons.

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says former University of Washington coach Charlie Baggett will coach receivers for the Rams, replacing Henry Ellard.

Ron Kroichick of the San Francisco Chronicle provides updates on each member of the 49ers team that beat Cincinnati in Super Bowl XVI. Center Fred Quillan and cornerback Lynn Thomas were the only ones he could not track down. Jack "Hacksaw" Reynolds is retired and splitting his time between Miami and the Bahamas. Not bad.

Matt Maiocco of the Santa Rosa Press Democrat illustrates the absurdity of various Michael Vick-to-the-49ers theories by connecting other dots, including imaginary ones.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the Vick rumors are all bark and no bite.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic checks in with Cardinals running back Edgerrin James, who is ending a frustrating season on a high note.

Also from Somers: a look at the matchup between Larry Fitzgerald and the Steelers' secondary.

More from Somers: The Cardinals held their final Arizona practice of the season.

Still more from Somers: He dispels five myths about the Cardinals heading into Super Bowl week.

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals are about to enter an unfamiliar world. Bickley: "The Cardinals are lucky that the man making all the off-field decisions [coach Ken Whisenhunt] and the man making most of the on-field decisions [Warner] have been here before. Bad news is, the Steelers just won the Super Bowl three years ago. They will have the advantage in experience, and it's a big one."

Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals feel confident in their ability to overcome a deficit if needed. Rodney Harrison says they're toast if they fall behind.

Doug Haller of the Arizona Republic looks at the challenges players face in coordinating Super Bowl ticket requests.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com sizes up the Cardinals' 2004 draft class, a keeper for sure.

Also from Urban: The Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger can be tough to tackle.

Mark Heller of the East Valley Tribune checks in with members of the Cardinals' 1947 championship team.

Not much on the Seahawks front, as far as I could tell, unless you want to re-read our account of Leroy Hill's arrest on a misdemeanor charge of possession less than one ounce of marijuana.

Police report summary: A citizen called police dispatch to report a driver sleeping at a green traffic light. An officer pulled over the vehicle. The driver produced a Washington driver's license identifying him as Leroy Hill. The officer said the smell of marijuana was strong. Hill denied having smoked any. The officer said he found two backs of marinjuana. "While searching Leroy's vehicle," officer Joshua Skinner wrote, "I looked in a black book bag on the passenger seat, finding two clear plastic sandwich bags containing green marijuana."