Sunday, March 20, 2011
Checking in from NFL owners meetings
By Mike Sando
NEW ORLEANS -- A few quick notes after dropping by the hotel lobby where NFL owners, executives and head coaches are checking in for their annual meetings:
- San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke was heading from a workout -- his own, at the hotel, as opposed to a college prospect's -- when I caught up with him for thoughts on the team. I'll work that into something for the blog in the coming days.
- The league generally announces its nationally televised Week 1 games at these meetings, but I'm told that isn't expected to happen here.
- I spoke with New York Giants owner John Mara regarding the playoff re-seeding proposal that failed to generate enough support for consideration at these meetings. The Giants and Tampa Bay Bucs missed the playoffs with 10-6 records while NFC West champion Seattle played a postseason home game at 7-9. I'll have more on that in the coming days.
- Speaking of the Seahawks, current coach Pete Carroll crossed paths with former coach Mike Holmgren in the hotel lobby here. Carroll was first on the draw with the handshake.
- New 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh walks with purpose and intensity even during the offseason. I have a feeling there isn't a more driven coach in the NFL, and that is saying something. Harbaugh and the other coaches will be available to reporters over breakfast Tuesday. That will be a highlight of the meetings, as always.
- Among the other NFC West people I've seen already: Billy Devaney and Kevin Demoff of the St. Louis Rams, plus John Schneider and Peter McLaughlin of the Seahawks. McLaughlin, hired after CEO Tod Leiweke left for the NHL, is making his Seahawks debut at the spring meetings. He's on the business ventures committee, the stadium security and fan behavior committee and the diversity committee working group.
The pace will pick up when meetings begin Monday. Thanks to those who have reached out with ideas. If there's something you'd like me to check into, fire away.