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Friday, July 22, 2011
Around the NFC West: Hasselbeck's future

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Brady Henderson of 710ESPN Seattle says ESPN's John Clayton sounds more skeptical about Matt Hasselbeck's return to the Seahawks, suggesting Seattle's offer to the veteran quarterback might not remain on the table when the signing period resumes. What about the market for veteran quarterbacks? When Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. listed the top three needs for every team, quarterback showed up for only five teams. It's tough finding a team likely to give a veteran such as Hasselbeck security beyond the 2011 season. Clayton joined ESPN's Trent Dilfer in mentioning Tarvaris Jackson as an option for Seattle. Jackson and the Seahawks' new offensive coordinator, Darrell Bevell, were together on the Vikings. I suspect quite a few Seattle fans would cringe at the idea. Jackson has 24 touchdowns, 22 interceptions and a 76.6 career rating.

Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune takes a player-by-player look at the Seahawks' projected free agents. He thinks Brandon Mebane will likely return and Hasselbeck will likely depart. Williams on Kelly Jennings: "While much-maligned, the former first round pick has proved durable for Seattle, starting 44 games in his five-year career in Seattle. At 5-11, 180 pounds, at first glance Jennings doesn’t appear an ideal fit for Seattle’s press coverage scheme on the outside. Add to that the fact that it appears the Seahawks would like to clear a path for second-year product Walter Thurmond to start, and Jennings could be headed elsewhere, with Detroit or Houston as possible destinations. However, don’t rule out the possibility of Jennings returning to Seattle -- at the right price."

Also from Williams: What would happen for Seattle if the NFL owners' plan took effect.

Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com looks back on the 1979 season, when the team posted a winning record for the second year in a row. Farnsworth: "No one played better than Steve Largent, who was the MVP on the ’79 team while averaging a career-best and still-club record 18.7 yards on 66 receptions. His 1,237 receiving yards led the NFL and were the second-highest total of his 14-season Hall of Fame career; the 66 catches tied for his seventh-highest total; and his nine TD catches tied for his fourth-best output."

Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times passes along a few tweets from Seattle players following the owners' move to approve a 10-year labor agreement. Michael Robinson: "Why is it all of a sudden pressure on us?? THEY LOCKED US OUT! Lol."

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic lists five reasons the Cardinals will benefit from the lockout. He installs Arizona as the NFC West favorite in 2011. Bickley: "There's much debate over who should be the next starting quarterback in Arizona. Kurt Warner has doubts about Kevin Kolb, and said emphatically this week he would not trade Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie for the Eagles' backup. Still, Whisenhunt's confidence is eerie, almost like he knows something. Not to alert the tampering police or anything, but that's a good sign."

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com alludes to a report that Kolb and Larry Fitzgerald worked out together earlier this offseason. This sounds familiar. Didn't someone tweet about such an arrangement earlier in the offseason? Perhaps events are running together. I know Hasselbeck once alluded to Fitzgerald inviting him to workouts.

Also from Urban: Warner tells Dan Patrick he's skeptical about Kolb and other players making an immediate impact after changing teams this late in the summer.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com checks in with 49ers linebacker and labor rep Takeo Spikes, who says players are "not even close" to acting on the owners' proposal. Maiocco: "The bottom line is that the lockout is still in effect. And while football might be closer to happening, there is a possibility that a deeper chasm has developed between the sides because of Thursday's events. The end appeared in sight earlier in the day. Fans seemingly had reason to rejoice when Goodell trumpeted that training camps would open Wednesday. He declared business would resume in the NFL, as long as the players ratified the proposal and recertified as a union. But, now, things are as tenuous as they've been during this entire labor dispute." The sides have agreed on the major economic issues, by all accounts. Keeping in mind the big picture is key.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee takes a closer look at undrafted free agents the 49ers could consider.

Also from Barrows: a look at the 49ers' to-do list once the lockout ends.

Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News offers thoughts on the 49ers' stadium situation.

The Associated Press says fans with tickets to the recently canceled Hall of Fame game featuring the Rams will be eligible for full refunds. AP: "The Pro Football Hall of Fame said in a statement Thursday night that it was 'disappointed' by the decision, which will have 'a significant adverse economic impact' on both the hall and city of Canton. The hall added that it appreciated 'the effort that was made on our behalf by the league and players right up until the last minute,' and that the long-term effects of a new agreement would be beneficial to all involved. The game would have been televised nationally on NBC. Although it's an exhibition, it was a major draw last year, boosted by an intriguing matchup between the always popular Dallas Cowboys and former receiver Terrell Owens' Cincinnati Bengals. That game was the highest-rated TV show of the week among the advertiser-coveted demographic of adults aged 18-49 and a close second overall to the season finale of 'The Bachelorette' with 11.4 million viewers."