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Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Around the NFC West: Peterson's progress

By Mike Sando
ESPN.com

Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals continue to take things slowly with Patrick Peterson even though the first-round pick thinks he's ready to start. Coach Ken Whisenhunt: "I'm glad we still have more time before the regular season, but Patrick's worked hard. He's an intelligent young man, he's very serious about getting better. We can learn a lot of things from the live situations like we saw in the game the other night and he'll get better. I don't think it's a question of 'if,' it's just a question of when it all clicks for him and it certainly seems to be moving in that direction." Whisehnunt said he wants Peterson to get a better feel for zone coverage. Peterson, the fifth player chosen in the draft, is the only player among the top six choices with no starts to this point in preseason. The two other first-round corners this year, Prince Amukamara and Jimmy Smith, have one start between them. Amukamara is injured.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic updates Max Hall's shoulder injury. The quarterback needs surgery and will spend the season on injured reserve.

Also from Somers: Whisenhunt remains coy regarding plans for the final preseason game.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com expects the Cardinals' starters to play in the team's final preseason game. Select players could get extended looks heading into mandatory reduction to the 53-man limit Saturday.

Also from Urban: Larry Fitzgerald isn't the only wide receiver on the Cardinals' roster. Some of the other guys take pride in their work as well.

Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com says the Seahawks are giving Breno Giacomini a look at right tackle in case rookie James Carpenter isn't ready for the starting role by Week 1. The two are splitting reps with the first and second units.

Also from Farnsworth: thoughts on John Carlson's season-ending injury. Farnsworth: "The Seahawks now seem set at the position entering Friday night’s preseason finale against the Raiders at CenturyLink Field, as well as the roster cut to 53 players on Saturday. Miller is the starter, with the former USC duo of Anthony McCoy and Dominique Byrd as the second and third options. McCoy is the better blocker, Byrd the better receiver."

Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times passes along Pete Carroll's explanation for the Carpenter-Giacomini time-share: "There's a lot to learn and there's a short time to learn it. We have to make sure that we're looking out after him, and preparing him as well as we can. He has been thrown right in, his feet are in the fire right from the first game against San Diego. He has done a lot of really good things, but it's still in progress, a process for us to figure it out and see if he will be ready for the opener."

Steve Kelley of the Seattle Times says the Seahawks' final preseason finale carries added meaning for the team given issues on the offensive line.

Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune displays a photo showing Walter Jones' bronze statue at the Seattle airport. Jones: "It’s cool. You go around to a lot of the airports and you see a lot of athletes being honored in the airports. So for me to be honored in Seattle is a great feeling."

Kathleen Nelson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says James Laurinaitis returned to Rams practice after resting a pectoral injury.

Also from Nelson: Versatility is key for Rams backup offensive lineman Quinn Ojinnaka. Nelson: "Ojinnaka, 27, has played center, guard and tackle in the Rams' first three preseason games and said the coaches told him to be ready to play at tackle Thursday, when the Rams face the Jacksonville Jaguars in the preseason finale."

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says Steven Jackson's dreadlocks have been on hiatus while his hairdresser is on maternity leave.

Also from Thomas: Mike Sims-Walker is grateful to play for the Rams. Thomas: "As a newly signed veteran, Sims-Walker had to wait until the collective bargaining agreement was approved Aug. 4 before he could practice with his new team. And then he missed a couple of days after tweaking his groin in the preseason opener against Indianapolis. Time is running out for the veteran wide receiver to get tuned up for the regular season, and as fate would have it, Thursday's final tuneup is in Jacksonville, where Sims-Walker spent his first four NFL seasons."

Nick Wagoner of stlouisrams.com checks in with rookie defensive end Robert Quinn.

Also from Wagoner: Al Harris didn't want to go out following an injury-plagued season.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com quotes 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh this way regarding Frank Gore: "Frank is a true 49er. I've said that from when I first got here. That's how I thought I would feel about Frank Gore. Now, I know how I feel about Frank Gore. The guy is awesome. Somebody should do a movie. Somebody should do the Frank Gore story, because it's an awesome story."

Also from Maiocco: The NFL has cleared the 49ers of any wrongdoing regarding Michael Crabtree's return to the practice field. Maiocco: "Crabtree has not taken part in any exhibition games in his first three NFL seasons. As a rookie, Crabtree did not sign his first contract until the first week in October. He sat out the first game, studied the playbook during the bye week and then started his first NFL game 18 day after signing his deal."

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says Jonathan Goodwin will start over Adam Snyder at center for the 49ers.

Eric Branch of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat says Crabtree did not appear close to full speed yet.