Chat with Len Pasquarelli
Len Pasquarelli (2:00 PM)
It's been a hectic time .. even in the couple days leading up to free agency. The deals were fast and furious on Day 1. Expect things to slow down a bit but there still may be a few big deals out there. On to your questions!
Mark (Dacula, GA)
Len, What on earth were the Broncos thinking letting Clinton Portis go? He's 22 years old, has had back to back 1500 yard seasons and is in his prime. Champ Bailey can't come close to the impact that Portis can have on the game. What's your take???
Len Pasquarelli (2:02 PM)
I couldn't disagree more. Shanahan has demonstrated that he can plug almost anyone in at tailback and produce a 1,400 yard rusher. But look at his track record at CB. They signed Dale Carter and he was a bust. They drafted Willie Middlebrooks and Deltha O'Neal as first rounders and both guys flopped. CB is a premium position in this league. Given the Broncos difficulties, I certainly think they got the upper and in this trade.
Len, please answer a question from a loyal reader. What are the raiders going to do with their WRs? I am hoping they draft fitzgerald and stay away from TO, and which one of the old men is on the way out? rice or brown?
Len Pasquarelli (2:04 PM)
(Laughing) The Raiders are not big players in the TO sweepstakes right now. Certainly the more likely scenario is them drafting a young WR to eventually pair with Jerry Porter. They have gotten rid of most of the old men so there aren't many geezers left to dump. Of course, just as I say that, they bring in a guy like Ted Washington! So maybe they are going to start restocking their geriatric closet.
Bill (Woodbury, NJ)
ESPN Insider has a Terrell Owens and Philly deal all but done. It seemed that talks were ongoing as we speak with San Fran willing to accept draft picks and now it just being a matter of working out the financials. Any truth to this?
Len Pasquarelli (2:06 PM)
I wouldn't term the deal done. But certainly the Eagles are right in the middle of it. Right now, the two top players are the Eagles and the Ravens. The big benefit for the Eagles is that they have a first round pick and Baltimore does not. The deal could be done in the next day or two. Clearly with the addition of Jevon Kearse, Philly is deonstrating it is tired of just getting to the NFC championship game. The good news for the Eagles is they have more than enough cap room to take on Owens' contract as-is and without having to sign him to a new deal right now.
Donald in Cincy
Len, I enjoy your columns. What kind of market do you see for Kitna and Dillon? I find it hard to believe that there isn't any interest for either of them. Kitna is the reigning AFC comeback player of the year and Dillon's production (outside of last year) has been phenomanal. They both have risks, but how can a team not fork over a 3rd rounder for either of them?
Len Pasquarelli (2:08 PM)
Everybody finds it hard to believe that the Bengals can't find a buyer for Dillon. But the truth is, there is no market for him right now. He will be 30 years old, is a malcontent and will probably want more money. As for Kitna, I think there could be a market down the road. But I also think the Bengals would prefer to retain him although at a lower price.
Hey Len. Don't you think you need to tone it down a little in your criticism of Daniel Snyder? I understand and agree with your point about not being able to buy a championship caliber team, but in your last article you all but called Snyder a spoiled, petulant child who cheats. You could have made your point without the sarcasm and name calling. The only thing I took away from the article was that you seem to have a distinct grudge against the man. You're too good a reporter to stoop to that level. On another note, personal feelings not withstanding, don't you think the 'Skins have made some good offseason moves? They got value in return for Champ Bailey (who didn't want to play in DC anyway) by getting Clinton Portis and they have signed talent for the D-line and picked up Shawn Springs to replace Bailey at corner. I don't know who this will play out in 3-4 years, but you have to agree they have improved for this year, right?
Len Pasquarelli (2:11 PM)
Dan Snyder likes to have his fingerprints on the Redskins roster. His track record in that regard speaks for itself. Clearly the moves they have made to date look good on paper. What Snyder has failed to realize so far is that good on paper doesn't always translate to good on Sunday afternoon. More than any other sport, football is a game of chemistry and it seems like every time Snyder fires up the bunson burner, the reaction is usually an explosion.
Steve Pasquariello (NJ)
First off, I didn't make up the last name, they're just that similar. Anyways, I hear Damien Woody is on his way to Miami today after visiting with Detroit. Any chance the Dolphins get something done with him today? Thanks Len
Len Pasquarelli (2:13 PM)
Wow, a last name even harder to spell than mine! Woody is indeed in Miami, that certainly appears to be his team of choice. My thinking is he will sign there. An inside tip; he and his wife vacationed in south Florida last week and peeked around at some potential neighborhoods. Miami is also the only city that Mrs. Woody traveled to regularly for Pats road games.
Stephen (Mobile, AL)
Mr. Pasquarelli, you have recently written about certain teams tampering with free agents before free agency actually began. Why does the NFL turn a blind eye to this, and does this mean that all teams are doing it, if we are not hearing any teams publicly complaining about being in a disadvantageous position? Thanks and hope to see you doing more chats in the future.
Len Pasquarelli (2:15 PM)
There is an old saying in college football, if you are not cheating, you are not trying! When it comes to the NFL, that sometimes holds true as well, esp. at free agency time. The problem is proving a tampering charge is next to impossible. No agent is ever going to admit that he spoke with an owner in advance of the signing period.
With Ted Washington already gone, and it looking more and more likely that Ty Law and Kevin Faulk might also leave the Patriots, what free agents should the Pats target to help replace those guys on a roster that is all about a team-frist metality?
Len Pasquarelli (2:16 PM)
I wouldn't worry too much about the Patriots, although the loss of Washington is huge, literally and figuratively. But the Belichick defense is not built around one man. He will find a way to get it done. By the way, there is no way Ty Law won't be with the Patriots this year. The last time I checked, the Pats were very close to resigning Kevin Faulk.
Any chance of the Texans keeping Drew Henson? Doesn't he have a stronger arm and more upside than Carr? Aren't the Texans trading the wrong QB here?
Len Pasquarelli (2:18 PM)
(Laughing) There is essentiall no way Henson will play with the Texans. I like David Carr, and so do the Texans. I think he has a huge upside. Certainly the addition of OT Todd Wade on Wednesday will benefit Carr. I'm still skeptical of Drew Henson, although I think he has excellent tools. But he has been out of the game for three seasons. As Chad Hutchinson has demonstrated in Dallas, it's difficult to knock off the rust sometimes.
James in Duluth Minnesota
Len 2 questions, but first, great job for keeping us fans up to speed. 1. Tell me the Vikes really arent really shopping Moss and 2. what are the chances the Vikes sign any of the folling: Antoine Winfield, Tai Streets, and Grant Wistrom. Thanks for the time Len
Len Pasquarelli (2:20 PM)
I would bet you the mortgage right now that No. 84 is with the Vikings in 2004. The trade rumors have certainly been overhyped, although Vikings officials have sought guidance from other teams about how to handle the Moss situation. It looks like Winfield will sign with the Jets today. I haven't heard much action on Streets. If the Vikes are interested, I'm sure he's a possiblity. My educated guess is that Wistrom will end up in Seattle or K.C.
Ryan (Midland, Pa)
Len: Do you feel that the Chargers lack of interest in Jeff Garcia is a dead giveaway that they're going to select a QB with the first overall pick? And if so, any chance that it will be somebody other than Eli Manning?
Len Pasquarelli (2:22 PM)
That certainly looks like circumstancial evidence. The Chargers however are holding their cards very close to the vest. I do think statute of limitations on the disappointment of Ryan Leaf has expired. Hey Chargers officials, get over it! My recent feeling is that the Chargers are now leaning towards selecting a QB with the top pick.
Where do you see Troy Vincent landing?
Len Pasquarelli (2:23 PM)
I know that Vincent was intrigued by his visit to Buffalo on Wed. The Bills did everything they could to bolt the door on him. But he had promised the Bengals and Marvin Lewis that he would visit there today and has kept his word. There are at least 1 or 2 other teams staying in contact with Vincent. It's somewhat distressing that such a class act probably won't finish his career with the Eagles.
Logan Burghardt (Toledo, Ohio)
Have you heard anything regarding Ahmed Plummer signing with the Lions today? I think adding a solid #2 like Plummer and then hopefully drafting Sean Taylor will give the Lions one of the better secondaries in the NFL.
Len Pasquarelli (2:25 PM)
I spoke to Plummer's agent this morning and he indicated that while his client liked the Lions, he will continue his tour. The CB market is certainly heating up and as one of the top corners remaining, Plummer is looking for big money. I would think it will be several more days before he makes a decision.
David ( Virginia)
Hey Len. How about Dallas? Who do you think they will be getting in this free agency market?
Len Pasquarelli (2:27 PM)
I don't expect the Cowboys to be big players. But I do think they will make some mid level acquisitions. One name I can throw at you is former Colts OL Adam Meadows who will visit there on Friday. He is still a very good player who would help upgrade the OL probably at right tackle. He won't break the bank but would be a nice addition. Look for players of his ilk to be on the Dallas radar screen.
Any chance Dallas will keep Galloway and still get Keyshawn Johnson?
Len Pasquarelli (2:28 PM)
No way! They may end up trading a draft pick for Keyshawn if the Bucs can't work out a deal with Galloway. But Joey has played his last game in Dallas.
Lovie S. (Chicago, IL)
What exactly did I get myself into? Will the FA period help me assemble more than a stop-gap offensive line?
Len Pasquarelli (2:29 PM)
(Laughing) If it's really you Lovie, you know far better than I do the task you face! One plus is that Dick Jauron did a very nice job late in the season of playing a lot of kids. There is some talent aboard, the change in offensive philosphy certainly will help, but you need some more playmakers.
Hey Len, marinara or alfredo sauce?
Len Pasquarelli (2:30 PM)
I'm a big time marinara guy!
Randy (Spavinaw, OK)
What are the chances that the Chiefs can land Grant Wistrom to replace Eric Hicks? Do the Chiefs have any free agent corners making any visits any time soon? Cunningham's defensive philosophy definately centers on bump and run coverage and getting to the QB..Thanks...
Len Pasquarelli (2:32 PM)
I'm not aware of any CBs scheduled for visits right now. I think given Dick Vermeil's relationship with Wistrom, the Chiefs have a very good chance of adding him. I agree with your comments about Gunther, and frankly think he is the best offseason addition the Chiefs will make. Thanks for your interest .. I know this an intriguing time for NFL fans, we'll continue to try and work hard to keep you posted on the latest transactions! Thanks for the great questions! Take care.