Around the NFC West: State of the 49ers
Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando
Matt Maiocco of the Sacramento Bee summarizes the 49ers' comments from the team's meeting with season-ticket holders. President Jed York again stresses Mike Singletary's intensity as reason for fans to have hope.
Also from Maiocco: Alex Smith would compete for the starting job if he signed a revised contract with the team. The 49ers also would not rule out taking a look at Michael Vick, although the likelihood seemed remote. Maiocco: "One possibility is free agent Jeff Garcia, who has been told he will not return to the Buccaneers next season. But Singletary said the question is how much of an improvement Garcia would be over Hill. Singletary: "When I look at Shaun Hill, I think he did a great job last year. I'm not sure how much better we get by bringing a Jeff Garcia in and adding to the mix when you have a guy like Shaun Hill."
Gwen Knapp of the San Francisco Chronicle attended the meeting and came away impressed. Knapp: "Singletary and the rest of the cast thanked everyone for coming there in the bad weather, even though the audience was well below the expected full house of 1,600. The weather wasn't really all that bad, either. The rain had stopped, and with Singletary's sizzle in the air, it was impossible to imagine how anyone could prefer Detroit."
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee expects Hill and Smith to compete for the 49ers' starting job in 2009.
Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News quotes 49ers general manager Scot McCloughan as saying he "fully believes" Smith will become a good quarterback for someone, whether it's the 49ers or another team.
David Fucillo of Niners Nation provides blow-by-blow coverage of the 49ers' meeting with season-ticket holders. His entry from 7:53 p.m. PT: "Great intro video for Singletary. This seems like something you'd see in professional wrestling!"
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic provides a quick update to the Cardinals' search for coordinators. He expects the team to hire from within. Offensive assistant Dedric Ward could be headed to the Chiefs as receivers coach.
Also from Somers: "Former Rams offensive coordinator Al Saunders interviewed for the receivers job last week. According to Mike Jurecki at XTRA-910, [Ken] Whisenhunt also has interviewed Rutgers offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach John McNulty. Jurecki also says former NFL quarterback Chris Miller could be the new quarterbacks coach."
Revenge of the Birds' Hawkwind breaks down the Cardinals' outside linebackers and pass-rushing defensive ends. Travis LaBoy started quickly but had a hard time finishing.
John Morgan of Field Gulls thinks the Seahawks will probably draft quarterback Matt Stafford, although Tim Ruskell's teams sometimes target quarterbacks in the third round.
Also from Morgan: Why he thinks Stafford will be available at No. 4.
More from Morgan: While one projection suggests Stafford will fail in the NFL, but the quarterback could compare favorably to Matt Ryan.
Shaun Dolence of 12th Man Rising spotted familiar names on the Broncos' cut list. Niko Koutouvides and Marquand Manuel are former Seahawks. The Broncos paid a $2 million signing bonus to Koutouvides last offseason. They seemed to think he projected as a starting middle linebacker.
VanRam of Turf Show Times lists offensive players Rams fans should keep in mind heading into the combine. VanRam: "Keep an eye on Cal center Alex Mack and Oregon center Max Unger. Both of these guys are great prospects at that all important position, a position the Rams desperately need to address if they have any intention of competing this year. Both of those guys could potential, arguably be drafted with the Rams second round pick, third pick overall in the second round."
Final Atlanta 24 Jacksonville 14 Final Detroit 23 Buffalo 0 Final Indianapolis 7 Cincinnati 35 Final New York 7 Philadelphia 37 Final St. Louis 13 Miami 14 Final Kansas City 14 Green Bay 34 Final Carolina 10 Pittsburgh 0 Final New England 13 New York 16 Final Washington 24 Tampa Bay 10 Final Baltimore 22 New Orleans 13 Final Chicago 13 Cleveland 33 Final San Francisco 40 Houston 13 Final Minnesota 19 Tennessee 3 Final Denver 27 Dallas 3 Final Arizona 9 San Diego 12 Final Seattle 31 Oakland 41