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November 5, 7:38 AM ET
Chat with Chris Mortensen

Chris Mortensen
  (11:00 AM)

Good morning! As always, plenty to talk about...including those Raiders.

Ryan (WI)

Mortimer: Any more news on the rumors of the Raiders dumping DeAngelo Hall and/or Javon Walker? I'm thoroughly pleased it only took half the season for the Raiders front office to realize how big the mistake was by signing those two to such big deals.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:02 AM)

Well, we should know shortly about how big an axe will swing today. DeAngelo Hall was considered an over-hyped DB for the past couple of years and now the Raiders are paying for it. Walker was a bad, bad signing.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:02 AM)

Well, we should know shortly about how big an axe will swing today. DeAngelo Hall was considered an over-hyped DB for the past couple of years and now the Raiders are paying for it. Walker was a bad, bad signing.


Mort, any chance the NFL will ever ammend its IR policy? I'm a huge Giants fan but it seems silly for teams to have to make year long decisions on players in August. Why don't they give teams more wiggle room? You'd think they'd do everything they can to have their stars play especially come playoff time.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:04 AM)

There has been more discussion about taking another look at IR. One reason the NFL expanded rosters to 53 was to allow teams to keep an injured player. IR was abused in the past but I do know there's some talk about it again, especially if the league expands to a 17-or-18-game season. But, bottom line, the Giants could have waited if they wanted to...then again, Osi may be feeling well but that's different than playing football and setting yourself up for further injury.

Pants Cortez (Boston)

Question for you on the state of the Broncos. Woody Paige wrote an article in the Denver Post today basically questioning if Shanahan should return next year. Shanny has publicly said he'd like to retire in Denver and Bowlen has said Shanahan is his man for as long as he owns the team. But at some point Shanahan might tire of this. Please advise...I am sure you know something we don't. Thanks!

Chris Mortensen
  (11:07 AM)

Tough one for me because I have such high regard for Shanahan. But i was speaking with a long-time NFL man last night who really believes that you can stay in one spot too long. He applauded Cowher for getting out when he did. I think when you win back-to-back Super Bowls, the only thing that brings you satisfaction again is a Super Bowl (naturally) and sometimes you can make bad personnel decisions. The offense is very good, as long as they'e healthy, but the defense hasn't been right for a long, long time.

Harry (Columbus, OH)

Get rid of Al Davis. He has no clue. Roger Goodell should step in before Davis cayses more damage to the Raiders.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:08 AM)

You do understand that Goodell can't do that, right? Raiders fans can speak more loudly by how they react to this decline.

Adam (Philly)

Mort, is there ever a breaking point when a franshise does so much damage to itself but more importantly the image of the NFL that the commissioner has the ability to step in and clean up the mess?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:10 AM)

This speaks to the last question and I know the commissioner is the type of guy who would call a struggling franchise and ask, "Is there anything we can do to help?" But he has no real power, especially as it pertains to way the football operation is run.

Brandon (Wisconsin)

Hi Chris i love you and the guys on the NFL countdown commercials. But are the Bears going to stick with Grossman or are they looking for a different QB?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:11 AM)

No, the Bears aren't looking for another QB. They will play Grossman and wait for Orton to heal. The bigger issue is the defense, which isn't playing Bears' defense.

Mike (FL)

60 something yards of offense this past weekend is making Lane Kiffin look like a genius? There is no way Cable makes it past next year? Any candidates crazy enough to take this job next season?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:13 AM)

The candidate pool for the Raiders' job is fairly predictable: Young offensive guy or recycled offensive coach. Jim Fassel would take that job and might be a good fit.

Steve in Syracuse, NY

Mort, Please tell me Jerry Jones does not plan to open his zillion dollar stadium with another puppet at HC!!! Please tell me if Jerry offers top dollar, that Cowher would take it, even if that means JERRY will still be in the draft room and roaming the sidelines!!

Chris Mortensen
  (11:15 AM)

I know Jerry probably will have an appropriate reaction if this Cowboys team falls short,espeically going into the new stadium. I would expect that Cowher, or perhaps even Mike Holmgren, would be on his mind. But let's see how the season plays out.

Kurt (Red Lake Falls, MN)

Mort, What are the odds of Mike Brown firing Marvin Lewis. If they go 1-15, how could he bring him back? It just seems like Brown has taken the team away from Marvin (re-signing Henry and not trading Ocho Cinco). And who might they bring in? Thanks!

Chris Mortensen
  (11:17 AM)

Mike Brown is not inclined to fire coaches but I would think he and Marvin would have a very serious conversation about whether it's wise to stay together. Who might they bring in? There will be plenty of candidates but I really think it won't change unless they bring in a new front-office boss, a new GM. And, in that case, maybe Marvin would want to stay on.

Craig (PA)

Bigger price for the Raiders in the Hall fiasco, giving up the draft picks (2nd last draft, 5th round this year) or slighting Asomugha by giving Hall the big contract last offseason?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:18 AM)

Slighting Asmomguha was silly, though he's making more money this year than Hall's $8 million take. I don't know if there's enough money for Al Davis to throw at Nmandi to get him to sign a long-term deal.

Steven (Magnolia,AR)

Mike MArtz in Oakland! Al's kind of guy.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:19 AM)

There's another logical name.

German (San Juan, PR)

I thought Jason Garrett was waiting in the wings to be the next Cowboys HC...

Chris Mortensen
  (11:20 AM)

Jason does not have one of those contract that "guarantees" him the job. He is making more money than any coordinator and he has been considered the favorite if they ever made a change, but I don't see that as a lock. Again, we have a good chunk of season left to play.

Dan (Chicago)

Hey Mort, The Miami Dolphins look to me to be a team that has the ability to dominate games and possibly push themselves into playoff contention. What do you see as their biggest strength/biggest weakness that could keep them out?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:22 AM)

They are physical. they are fundamentally sound. They have a winning, experienced quarterback. Strong along both sides of the line. But they have to really work hard to get points - Dan Henning has done a phenomenal job as OC - and I'm not sure they have great cover people. But when you look at their schedule from here on out, it's easy to imagine a 9 or 10 win team.

Ed (Boston)

How is Belichick not getting more consideration for Coach of the Year? Any other coach missing his starting QB, both top running backs, and defensive captain while still in first place?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:24 AM)

Well, I mentioned him on my radio show Friday night when I reviewed mid-season awards. I think I had it Fisher, Zorn, Beilchick and Mike Smith...Tony Sparano. Obviously, Belichick is a candidate for the award.

Pete C (Newark De)

Mort, are you surprised with the performances from the two rookie head coaches with rookie signal callers? Will we see more teams move in that direction instead of experienced counterparts.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:27 AM)

You're speaking about Mike Smith & Matt Ryan in Atlanta and John Harbaugh & Joe Flacco in Baltimore. And, yes, I'm surprised that they're having this much success early. I guess the Ravens, with their defense, had a chance to compete every week but I didn't see it coming with the Falcons, even though I was a Mike Smith proponent. Both coaches have excellent staffs, really good coordinators (Mike Mularkey and Cam Cameron) to work with those young QBs. They had focused off-seasons and training camps. Oh, and they obviously didn't miss on those QBs.

Rob (Pittsburgh)

I think Mike Tomlin satisfies Ed's coach of the year requirements. Plus, the Steelers have actually played a schedule that includes NFL teams.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:29 AM)

I'm really impressed with Tomlin. And just the fact that as a young, 35-year-old rookie coach who had the courage and wisdom enough to retain Dick LeBeau as defensive coordinator showed me a lot. You also hear that Tomlin is actually is more demanding of his players than Bill Cowher. So, yes, Mike T has done a great job and deserves a lot of consideration on that list.

Shawn (Toronto)

Mort, between the 49ers, Chiefs, Lions, and Bengals - which team do you think is most headed in the right direction?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:30 AM)

I'd probably give the nod to the Chiefs. They had a great draft, they have young players, they did it mostly by design and you can see some encouraging signs.

Randy (Baltimore MD)

Is there any particular reason why you are excluding John Harbaugh from your list of coach of the year? First year coach, rookie QB, diminished secondary and 5-3.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:31 AM)

Honestly, my list of candidates went 10 deep and Harbaugh was on it. Just look at the league and you can figure out why there are so many worthy candidates at this point.

Jones Malone (Arizona)

If the Arizona Cardinals don't win the Super Bowl, is it possible that Kurt Warner will not only make the Pro Bowl, but is it possible for his to win Comeback Player of the Year?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:33 AM)

No, Warner's last eight games in 07 were pretty darn good. The comeback player basically is obvious one, if he stays on this path: Jake Delhomme, Carolina. He had Tommy John elbow surgery last October. As far as the Pro Bowl with Warner..and maybe in the MVP running, yes.

Jake (VA Beach)

Can you explain how the Eagles are actually favored by 3 over the Giants this week?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:34 AM)

The Eagles are at home. But I don't know how they make their lines. I just hear they're pretty good at making money.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:34 AM)

The Eagles are at home. But I don't know how they make their lines. I just hear they're pretty good at making money.

Scott (CT)

What's your revised super bowl pick at the halfway point?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:36 AM)

This is a real dangerous question to answer and I am certainly capable of looking foolish. If I had to choose now, and maybe just to surprise people, I'd say the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. the Carolina Panthers. But I do think the Titans and Giants make sense.

Jon (IN)

What can we expect out of Brady Quinn tomorrow night in his first ever NFL start?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:37 AM)

I'm expecting BQ to play really well. I know how well he prepares. He has ability. He is also playing a very soft Broncos defense and he will have a super-chargered home crowd, which should energize the entire team.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:39 AM)

I don't see how the Jets "take control" over the next two weeks. I like 'em, I think they have a chance to win the division but they also could be playing for a spot when they finish Dec. 28 at home vs, the Dolphins. Chad Pennington vs. Brett Favre for a playoff spot? Now that would be something.

Jay (Middletown, CT)

Mort, please help me! Is Brandon Marshall just upset becuase of the team failures recently or is there more to this and we have a true "Baby TO" looming in Denver? This is disturbing me greatly!

Chris Mortensen
  (11:40 AM)

I watched that game Sunday between the Broncos and Dolphins and whatI saw from Brandon Marshall would concern me a lot, both in the way he played and reacted.


does arron rodgers have a bad case of cant score inside the 20? is this one of his weakenesses?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:41 AM)

I think thebest red zone teams are teams that can run it and right now the Packers' running game is not what it was. Let's see if they can fix it.

Voc (FL)

Do you think the Giants will be able to keep their Defensive Coord. after the season? Or is his stock to high to not take a HC position?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:42 AM)

I think Steve Spagnuolo definitely will be a head coach in another city in 2009.

Tegucgialpa, Honduras

Do you think the Falcons are for real against the Saints?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:46 AM)

I have to answer this question!!! My mom is a Honduran immigrant who was raised in Tegucigalpa..... I think the Falcons are "for real" but the Saints & Drew Brees have had their number. They're coming off the bye and they are in "must-win" mode but I can see Atl winning this game.

Tim (El Cajon, CA)

Mort, do you really think the Lions would play Culpepper already this weekend?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:47 AM)

I'm skeptical they would start him but I could see them slipping him in there with a package or two.

Anthony (NYC)

Mort are the price tags for good GMs that expensive, that Al Davis wouldn't even consider such an option? He is just killing the Raider franchise, when does this stop?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:48 AM)

Well, Davis did tell reporters after that infamous Kiffin firing that he would look to add somebody to the front office in football operations. I don't know what that means, though.

Nick (Wisconsin)

Whats more shocking this season, the fact that Tennessee is 8-0 or the fact that many Super Bowl teams fail the next year and all that they went through this off season that the Giants are in position to win yet another Championship?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:49 AM)

Actually, it's the Super Bowl loser that struggles most the next year.

Jay (Middletown, CT)

Not sure if it would be good or bad but any chance Denver picks up DeAngelo Hall? He is young and was good in Atlanta. Look what Moss did after leaving pittiful Oakland!

Chris Mortensen
  (11:50 AM)

I'm sure Hall would get a look from the broncos and other teams. But, remember, the Broncos went right after Hall in the first game they played and he was never quite as good as his rep in Atl. Why do you think they let him go?

bud(san atonio,Tx

Do u think Mort its a good idea for Dallas to take a chance on Hall since there hurting in the secondary?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:52 AM)

I think that would be like mixing a bad cocktail, bringing Hall into that locker room.

Nick (wisconsin)

True with the loser part but i meant the giants suprise in that...Strahan retires, Osi gets injured (though is there a chance to see him this year)? And yet they are still up there...maybe i just had low expectations this year for the giants.

Chris Mortensen
  (11:54 AM)

yeah, I just think it speaks to the great job the organization has done there, starting wth Tom Coughlin. But they have a better grasp of Spagnuolo's scheme, they have talent, their O-line is maybe the best in the NFL, Eli is just hitting his prime, they got a great RB corps, strong WRs... I admit the Osi injury lowered expectations but that goes back to the wisdom of ex-GM Ernie Accorsi drafting Kiwanuka when everyone said, "Why?"

Mike (West Palm Beach , fl)

Mort, whats your prediction on the dolphins record? 10-6 9-7?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:55 AM)

I'm really tempted to say 10-6 but 9-7 is probably a more realistic upside.

Greg - tampa

Everyone is talking abotu Carolina, but Tampa put them in their place. I think Tampa is the team to beat in that division, what do you think Mort?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:56 AM)

Maybe. The Panthers had a lot of people out that game but the Bucs are interesting. The NFC South will be a great division to watch down the stretch.

John (Columbus, OH)

How good is Darelle Revis - might he already be in the Top 5 DB's in the league discussion?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:57 AM)

I would put him there. I thought he may have been among the top five down the stretch last year.

Matt (Kansas City)

What are your impressions of Tyler Thigpen so far? Does he have a chance to be a capable starter?

Chris Mortensen
  (11:59 AM)

I do. David Bennett, his coach at Coastal Carolina, is somebody i really respect and gave him rave reviews before the '07 draft. The Vikings really thought they had stole one but got cute trying to sneak him through waivers when the Chiefs nabbed him. Good athlete, good enough arm, love what Chan Gailey is doing with him and no huddle. I think he has a chance.

Jason (NYC)

Mort, you think Cowher would be considered for the Niners job? Would he be interested in taking it?

Chris Mortensen
  (12:01 PM)

No, I don't see Cowher with any designs on that job. I think he's reluctant to coach next year but there could be some tempting jobs that fit his criteria. SF not one of them.

Tony (Brooklyn, NY)

Name 5 defensive players better than Justin Tuck. I'll spot you Asomugha and Haynesworth - are there three more? Thanks!

Chris Mortensen
  (12:02 PM)

Well, he's up there. he might be better, more versatile & more consistent than Haynesworth.

Chris Mortensen
  (12:03 PM)

Hey, gotta run ut catch up with us on ESPN Radio Friday from 7-9 ET & Sunday NFL Coundown 11-1 ET. God Bless!