Around the NFC West: Branch trade a lose-lose

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Mike Reiss of Reiss' Pieces revisits the Seahawks-Patriots trade involving receiver Deion Branch. The move might have kept the Patriots from a Super Bowl. The Seahawks, meanwhile, have realized little return on a substantial investment.

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer says Maurice Morris will start at running back for the Seahawks against New England. Coach Mike Holmgren says he'll "sprinkle in" Julius Jones and T.J. Duckett.

Frank Hughes of the Tacoma News Tribune quotes Jim Mora's friend and former college roommate, Hugh Millen, as saying there's no chance Mora will become the next head coach at the University of Washington. Nothing has changed, in other words.

Chrissy Mauck of 49ers.com takes a look at the Jets in advancing the 49ers' upcoming opponent. The Jets could make Frank Gore work for every yard.

Matt Maiocco of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat says the Dolphins claimed former 49ers receiver Chris Hannon off waivers.

Also from Maiocco: highlights from Mike Singletary's midweek news conference, including an update on the return game.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the 49ers are petitioning the NFL to transfer a half-sack from Justin Smith to Roderick Green.

Darren Urban of azcardinals.com thinks Kurt Warner needs a big game at New England to revive his candidacy for league MVP.

Also from Urban: Tim Hightower is looking to reestablish the Cardinals' ground game.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals added Adrian Wilson (shoulder) and Anquan Boldin (back) to the injury report. Both practiced.

Also from Somers: The Cardinals held a physical practice session after a few days of rest. Cornerback Rod Hood was back from injury, a big help for the secondary.

Andrew from Revenge of the Birds downloads our Pro Bowl spreadsheet and makes the case for Karlos Dansby. The issue always becomes: who gets left off. Brian Urlacher? Patrick Willis? Antonio Pierce?

Bill Coats of Around the Horns says Chris Draft could be back in the Rams' lineup at linebacker in Week 14. Also, rookie Chris Chamberlain is getting work with the starters on the strong side. The fact that coach Jim Haslett is turning to young players suggests he's keeping the Rams' long-term future in mind. Perhaps he feels the Rams will make him part of it.

Steve Korte of the Belleville News-Democrat says Warner sees little extra significance in a chance to clinch the NFC West title against the Rams.

Judd Zulgad of Access Vikings says Minnesota has signed former Rams defensive tackle Jimmy Kennedy as a stopgap.