Sam Baker takes back Falcons’ starting left tackle job

Sam Baker is a former 1st round pick, but lost his starting job last season to Will Svitek, who didn’t play well. The Falcons have put him back as the 1st string left tackle for now, saying that his struggles last year were the result of a back injury. However, Baker has been a disappointment throughout his career and the Falcons used a 3rd round pick on a tackle in Lamar Holmes. All 3 of Holmes, Baker, and Svitek likely remain in the running to start at left tackle.

Left tackle might be the Achilles heel of the entire Falcons’ team, at the very least of the offensive line. Justin Blalock returns at one guard spot and talented 2nd round rookie Peter Konz will play the other. Right tackle Tyson Clabo remains one of the best at his position. At center, the young Joe Hawley will compete with veteran Todd McClure. Hawley could also play guard and move Konz to center.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

49ers’ Vernon Davis praises Randy Moss

Randy Moss was out of the league last year and the year before bounced around 3 teams, catching 28 balls for 393 yards and 5 touchdowns and barely playing down the stretch with the Tennessee Titans. However, the 49ers took a flier on him, needing a deep threat, hoping the now 35 year old Moss had something left in the tank. According to teammate Vernon Davis, Moss looks like the Moss of old, though it’s necessary to take Davis’ “report” with a grain of salt.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

Donald Driver restructures with Packers

It was reported earlier this month that Donald Driver would restructure with the Packers after he was done on Dancing with the Stars and that report turned out to be accurate. A week after winning Dancing with the Stars, Driver restructured with the Packers on a 1 year, 2.5 million dollar deal to return for his 15th NFL season, all with the Packers.

The new deal is down from 4.3 million, so it’s a sizeable paycut. 500,000 of it was paid up front, a sign that the Packers do intend to keep him on their 53 man roster, despite the fact that he’s 37. Unless he really struggles in Training Camp, he’ll be on the roster this season as a 4th or 5th wide receiver. He’s definitely behind Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, and James Jones at this point and might get beaten out by 2011 2nd round pick Randall Cobb.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

Could Santana Moss start for Redskins?

When the Redskins signed Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan this offseason, it looked like it could be the end for Santana Moss in Washington. Moss, 33, had clearly seen better days and the Redskins had 2 receivers coming in as free agents, as well as a promising young receiver in Leonard Hankerson. The Redskins instead cut Jabar Gaffney, which gave Moss some more roster security.

However, Moss is doing more than just making the roster so far in OTAs. He is currently impressing a lot. Mike Shanahan praised him and his conditioning, while Redskins beat writer Rich Campbell of the Washington Times said he looked like “the Santana Moss of old.” With Leonard Hankerson and Josh Morgan still not 100% because of injuries, Moss has a good chance to not just stay on the roster, but start opposite Garcon. It’ll be a battle to watch in Training Camp.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

Lions believe Ryan Broyles could be ready for Training Camp

Ryan Broyles is the FBS’ all-time leading receiver, but he fell in the draft because he was undersized and because he tore his ACL late last season. The Lions obviously saw he was far enough along in his recovery at his Pro Day, where he ran a 40 in the 4.60 range, that they used their 2nd round pick on him even though they had no clear need for a wide receiver.

Broyles has been doing some limited positional drills at OTAs and according to a report from CBS Sports, the Lions believe that Broyles could be cleared to practice full time by Training Camp. According to the same source, the Lions are “expecting a contribution from him this year.” It sounds like there’s a good chance he’ll be out there week 1 and if he is, it’s only a matter of time before he leaps veteran Nate Burleson on the depth chart.

The Lions selected Broyles with the intention of having 3 talented, young receivers going into the future with Broyles, Titus Young, and Calvin Johnson. With Matt Stafford throwing to them, that would make for a very explosive passing offense year in and year out. Burleson, meanwhile, likely won’t be kept into 2013, when he’ll be owed 4.5 million at age 32.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

Browns’ Greg Little has slimmed down

In preparation for his 2nd NFL season, the Browns’ Greg Little has slimmed down about 11 pounds, getting him to around 6-2 210. Little is reporting turning many heads at Browns’ OTAs. Immensely talented, but raw as a rookie, Little is the undisputed #1 receiver on an offense that should be better this season. The 2011 2nd round pick is a popular breakout pick and has a lot of upside in fantasy football.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

Vikings’ Asher Allen abruptly retires

A 3rd round pick in 2009, the Vikings’ Asher Allen abruptly retired at the age of just 24. Allen had no serious injuries and no reason has been publicly released for his early retirement. It’s possible that Allen, who suffered a concussion in each of the last 2 years, was concerned about his long term safety and decided to retire while he was still able to have a normal life after retirement.

With recent deaths of players like Junior Seau, it wouldn’t shock me if a few more players retired for this same reason, with the spotlight being put on concussions in recent years. Allen probably would have been the Vikings’ #3 cornerback this year. He’s been subpar in coverage in all 3 of his NFL season, according to ProFootballFocus, so the Vikings won’t miss him all that much.

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]

[switch_ad_hub]