Around the NFC West: James feels end near

January, 2, 2009
1/02/09
9:21
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says Edgerrin James knows his final days with the Cardinals are near. James expects to be released after the season and said he would be fine with that result.

Also from Somers: The Cardinals' opponents are making Arizona pay for turnovers, in part because the team keeps committing them in its own territory. I'll have a related note pertaining to the Falcons-Cardinals game later this morning. How is that for a tease?

Dan Bickley of the Arizona Republic says Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald works at his craft and can't sleep after misplaying a ball. Fitzgerald catches 60 extra passes per day. Having watched Fitzgerald closely this season, I can't remember being more impressed by a player at the position. Jerry Rice was in his own category and the best receiver ever, but Fitzgerald makes plays on the ball that even Rice would have to admire.

Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals need strong games from their nose tackles in containing the Falcons' ground game.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com quotes Anquan Boldin as crediting James' running style for wearing down defenses.

The 49ers' Web site polled players for New Year's resolutions. Vernon Davis, Eric Heitmann and Barry Sims hoped to improve their fledgling golf games this offseason.

Ray Ratto of the San Francisco Chronicle says Mike Singletary is running the 49ers with such resoluteness that he might not have much tolerance for differing opinions.

Matt Maiocco of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat profiles potential candidates to replace Mike Martz as offensive coordinator. He sees value in hiring an experienced candidate, as do I.

Also from Maiocco: Singletary sees himself on par with general manager Scot McCloughan.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the 49ers are wise to let their next offensive coordinator select his quarterbacks coach. He also provides information on end-of-season leaders in a few categories. Joe Staley might have played every offensive snap.

Dan Brown of the San Jose Mercury News says McCloughan will not see bowl games in person this year while the 49ers are searching for an offensive coordinator. Personnel director Trent Baalke will attend in his stead.

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch updates the Rams' coaching search. The team can't speak with Leslie Frazier and Rex Ryan until next week, but a few other candidates are available for interviews.

VanRam of Turf Show Times laments a Pro Football Weekly rumor saying the Rams could consider Martz as offensive coordinator if Jim Haslett remains head coach for the 2009 season. At least Marc Bulger would know the offense.

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