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Monday, May 23, 2011
Around the NFC West: Throwback uniforms

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com offers highlights from team president Peter McLoughlin's conversation with Sports Radio 950 KJR, including notes about the Seahawks considering throwback uniforms for the 2012 season. There is also more talk about considering natural grass at Qwest Field, but that seems unfeasible anytime soon. Farnsworth: "The NFL’s uniform contract switches from Reebok to Nike for the 2012 season, and the Seahawks already have had discussions with the Oregon-based Nike company about new looks -- including an old one, as the Seahawks never have played a game in replicas of their vintage uniforms." The Seahawks have been wearing their current uniforms since only 2002, the year Qwest Field opened as Seahawks Stadium. Their throwbacks aren't very old, in other words. Cool site here.

Nick Wagoner of stlouisrams.com puts together a video report highlighting the coaching staff's efforts to help those affected by tornado damage in Ferguson, Mo. Spagnuolo: "You feel for the victims that have been involved in this tornado. We're a few weeks past it, yet there are people still affected. I don't think any of us in the St. Louis area want to forget about what some of these people are going through." The Rams coordinated the efforts through United Way. Additional tornadoes hit Missouri hard since the Rams put together this video.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com says top pass-rushers tend to collect sacks quickly upon entering the NFL. For that reason, the 49ers might know this season whether or not first-round choice Aldon Smith fits the mold. Maiocco: "In comparison, neither Manny Lawson nor Parys Haralson broke into the NFL with a pass-rushing flurry. Lawson recorded 2.5 sacks in 16 games in 2006. He has 14.5 career sacks in four full seasons after missing all but two games in 2007 with a knee injury. Haralson had no sacks in seven games as a rookie. He has 19.5 sacks in his other four seasons. That is why the 49ers were determined to invest a high pick in a pass-rusher. And they might not have been alone in their affinity for the youngster from Missouri. The 49ers believe the Redskins or Texans would have selected Smith within the top 11 picks if the 49ers had traded back. The next pass-rusher drafted was North Carolina's Robert Quinn, who went No. 14 overall to the Rams."

Also from Maiocco: 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman explains differences between the team's current offensive playbook and the one Jim Harbaugh used at Stanford. Maiocco: "The width of NFL hashmarks is 18 feet, 6 inches. In college, the hashmarks are 40 feet wide. There can be a lot more unbalanced formations in college, Roman said, as well as major considerations on how to utilize the varying space toward the sideline on both side of the football. This difference in where the play can begin has a huge impact because of the spacing on the field. Also, there were necessary adjustments that had to be made in merely describing where the wide receivers line up."

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee passes along highlight's from Colin Kaepernick's recent radio appearance in Los Angeles, notably an update on the playbook Kaepernick received from a teammate.

Also from Barrows: He expects Manny Lawson to have more value to another team than to the 49ers.

Jessica Kwong of the San Francisco Chronicle was there when 49ers tight end Vernon Davis met with kids in association with an art initiative.

Eric Branch of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat appreciates Harbaugh's directness.

Russ Lande of Sporting News lists Arizona among three teams as the best destinations for Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer, should Cincinnati trade or release him. Lande: "Palmer has the size, build, arm strength, technique and passing skills, even though he does not look like the quarterback of a number of years ago when he was viewed in the same class as Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. Overall, if a team had a good talent base but was lacking at quarterback, strongly pursuing Palmer makes sense. His value right now stands as a conditional second-round pick that could become a first-rounder based on the team's success. With those parameters, the Cardinals, Dolphins and Redskins would be the best fit for Palmer." A competent quarterback has even more value in the NFC West because any team possessing one has a legitimate shot at earning a playoff berth. Someone such as Palmer would not make the difference for Cincinnati in an AFC North featuring Pittsburgh and Baltimore. Put him on the Cardinals, however, and Arizona would have to like its chances.