NFC West: Kirk Morrison
Derrik (Phoenix): Sando, if the Cards could get an extra third-round pick for Anquan Boldin, should they try to go after Kirk Morrison and give up that extra pick, or do you think Larry Foote could do just as good as Morrison. Thanks.
Mike Sando: I would much rather have the third-round choice and Foote than no third-round choice and Morrison. Foote would fit the 3-4 mold in Arizona. Foote was with the Steelers when Ken Whisenhunt was there, so that would be another potential bonus. Foote would know what the Cardinals are trying to accomplish scheme-wise. I think he also has some leadership skills that could be valuable.
Cosby (Stanton,CA): Mike, Seattle has no pass rush and its putting a lot of strain on the secondary. Don't you think maybe Paul Allen should spend the BIG money to get Peppers to become a Seahawk? Thanks.
Mike Sando: It's always fun telling other people how to spend lots of money. I do think the Seahawks should consider that type of move. I also will not be surprised if they do get involved with Peppers. That's the sort of move a team makes when it wants to quickly make up for recent draft failures. Peppers is expected to command $12 million to $13 million per year. That's not much more than the team was planning to pay (combined) for Deion Branch and Patrick Kerney. Cut those two, sign Peppers and you're instantly a better team even if Peppers isn't the most reliable bet.
Andre (Maple Grove MN): Why are the 49ers trying to work out a long term deal with Aubrayo Franklin? He has one great year, and most players in their contract year tend to overacheive.
Mike Sando: The 49ers might be trying to work out a long term deal, but how hard are they trying? I think they might agree with you more than you think. Otherwise they might have signed him long term. They were going to franchise him all along. This move lets them evaluate him for another season and then decide on the smartest course. The labor situation might have more clarity by then as well.
Kyle (Tempe,AZ): Who is the most likely team to trade one of their draft picks in the NFC West? There is a lot of talk surrounding the Rams and the 49ers and Seahawks. Each have two in the first round.
Mike Sando: The Rams have the 33rd pick, which is in the second round, so they have only one first-rounder. But you're right about the NFC West holding lots of picks early. I think we're likely to see trades. The Rams could have a hard time moving the first overall choice, but I think that 33rd choice will have value as teams regroup between the first and second days.
One other thought on Peppers: The Seahawks should have a good feel for him after hiring Panthers scout Trent Kirchner as their assistant director of pro personnel.
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
49ers running back Frank Gore was apparently relishing a chance to compete against the Raiders in joint practices beginning Tuesday.
Matt Barrows: "To say that Gore was excited for today's morning practice would be like saying the Grand Canyon is kinda deep."
Matt Maiocco: "[Gore] was incredible in blitz pickup, as he pancaked both Ricky Brown and Kirk Morrison in the drill. Gore was so fired up, he acted as if he wanted more. RBs coach Tom Rathman took Gore out of the drill the next time he was lined up to go against David Nixon, a rookie linebacker from BYU. (At that moment, Nixon might have been the happiest person on the planet.)"
This might be what happens when a coaching staff prevents a highly competitive person -- Gore, in this case -- from playing in the first exhibition game.
Protecting Gore against the Broncos on Friday night made sense given how much the staff wanted to evaluate Glen Coffee. Coffee impressed in his preseason debut. He isn't a threat to Gore's job and I don't think Gore felt any extra motivation after watching Coffee. But he apparently did want to make a statement against the Raiders. Point taken.