NFL Nation: Mark Grieb

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Bob McManaman of the Arizona Republic has proof Anquan Boldin doesn't want to let his contract issues affect the team negatively. Boldin: "It ain't worth it, man. My teammates work too hard and I know I'm a big part of the process with this program. If I held out or did anything like that, I'd be letting them down."

Dave Mahler of KJR radio in Seattle speaks with Seahawks receiver Deion Branch, who says he isn't quite ready to return from a knee injury. The link goes straight to audio.

Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch answers Rams-related questions in his weekly chat. He sees some encouraging signs from the Rams, but a tough schedule makes a 4-4 start seem overly optimistic.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee differentiates between contested and allegedly contested starting positions on the 49ers. He thinks Takeo Spikes will eventually beat out Jeff Ulbrich.

Nate Clements of the 49ers answers fan questions on the team's Web site. Clements: "I love this game, and so it's easy to smile. You should always have fun out there. The history and tradition of the game is important to me."

Seahawks president Tim Ruskell is eager to see if the team has fixed its running game. Ruskell: "It's too hard to make a living off the pass like we did last year. We showed we can do a good job of it. That would just be too hard, especially with some of the vets down in the passing game. We don't have that fallback position. We need the run to become consistent so we can have some balance and everybody will be better because of it."

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer checks in with D.D. Lewis, the Seahawks' versatile backup linebacker. Julian Peterson comes through with a great quote comparing Lewis to the first-stringers: "D.D. is like one of the 1s. We call him 1 1/2."

Dan Brown of 49ers Hot Read says former UC Davis quarterbacks Ken O'Brien and Mark Grieb are pulling for J.T. O'Sullivan, who also played for the Aggies. O'Brien breaks down O'Sullivan's unorthodox style this way: "You wouldn't look at J.T. and say, 'That's my vision of a quarterback.' I wouldn't quite say he's herky-jerky, but he slings the ball all over the place. That's how he gets the job done."

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