David Garrard's agent has suggested the recently released NFL quarterback will likely wait until next week before considering his options.
Teams are deep into their Week 1 game plans and not ready to make a full-season commitment to another player at such a critical position. Signing Garrard for Week 1 would force a team to guarantee his salary for the season. Teams with unsettled quarterback situations will have a better feel for where they stand next week.
The Seattle Seahawks have already said they're not interested in Garrard or in shaking up their quarterback situation. The San Francisco 49ers haven't been as definitive.
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee thinks Garrard still has the athleticism at age 33 for 49ers coach Harbaugh to find him appealing. Barrows: "He rushed 66 times for 279 yards last season and scored five touchdowns on the ground. His accuracy was terrible in the preseason -- only 50 percent -- but last year he completed 64.5 percent of his throws. That's nearly 5 percentage points higher than Alex Smith. The bigger factor is opportunity. There are two rookies behind Smith. Kaepernick, while still very much the team's future quarterback, struggled at times in the preseason." Noted: I haven't considered Garrard to have Harbaugh's type of athleticism at this stage, but in re-evaluating that impression, it might just be that Garrard doesn't seem to make the best use of his athleticism. Our Scouts Inc. evaluation on Garrard, available to Insider subscribers, says he gets sacked too frequently because he doesn't feel the rush very well. Of course, Smith hasn't had the greatest feel for such things, either. Adding Garrard would complicate things for the 49ers, but it would also upgrade their prospects on paper. Would the potential upgrade make the disruption worthwhile? That question is tougher to answer.
Jerry Brewer of the Seattle Times says the Seahawks' Pete Carroll wants a game manager at quarterback, one reason Seattle appears unconcerned heading into the season with Tarvaris Jackson behind center. Brewer: "The Seahawks are now far removed from the philosophy of former coach Mike Holmgren, a QB guru, who believed that the right quarterback can both carry a team and hide some of its warts. The defensive-minded Carroll brings a different perspective. The Seahawks' era of the game manager is undoubtedly here." Noted: The Seahawks presumably would like a better quarterback, one capable of carrying their team. They didn't think Kevin Kolb or any of the others available to them this offseason fit that description well enough to invest massive sums in them. If Carroll intends to employ average to below-average quarterbacks for the long term, good luck to him.
Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times profiles Jackson. O'Neil: "For all the criticism he took, the Vikings were 10-10 in games he started and he owns a better career passer rating (76.6) than Kevin Kolb (73.2), the quarterback Arizona gave up the NFL equivalent of a firstborn son to acquire. The truth is, Minnesota wanted Jackson to succeed. He was picked by coach Brad Childress, and the Vikings traded up to acquire him. If things had worked out in 2008, when Jackson began the year as the starter, Favre wouldn't have entered the equation. Jackson's five years in Minnesota were enough to cast question on his durability and his accuracy."
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune explains why he thinks the Seahawks could move James Carpenter to guard in Week 1, with Breno Giacomini taking over at right tackle. Boling: "They're scraping around to try to find a way to be the best they can this Sunday and they'll worry about future implications later. Breno's footwork seems to have improved a great deal, and that allows him to be more efficient in using that natural strength. And, yes, he's got some nasty to him. This is not a guy who will allow Darnell Dockett to dig his elbow into his quarterback's throat." Noted: Giacomini seems to be the one initiating trash talk with defensive linemen during one-on-one drills. He's not lacking for confidence.
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says the Cardinals will tailor their game plan for strong safety Adrian Wilson, who is playing for the first time since suffering a torn biceps tendon one month ago. Defensive coordinator Ray Horton: "Is he going to be a little rusty? Yeah, I expect him to, but we'll try to cater the defense to him and make sure he's not asked to do something he hasn't done in practice. One thing that that kid does is he comes downhill very hard, so you can expect him to come down hill very hard." Noted: Wilson continues to amaze. We've periodically heard about quarterbacks playing despite torn biceps tendons, but their situations have been different. Quarterbacks can play with a torn tendon if the tendon is one of the two attaching near the shoulder. By all accounts, Wilson's injury affects the one tendon attaching nearer his elbow. If that one tears completely, there's no playing through it.
Also from Somers: Horton says he is "very comfortable" with where the Cardinals are defensively after not giving up big plays early in preseason games. Noted: The first two games of the regular season set up favorably for the Cardinals' defense. They face Cam Newton, a rookie making his first NFL start, in the opener. They then face Washington, another team without an established passer.
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says Patrick Peterson is excited about being the Cardinals' primary punt returner heading into the season. Noted: Serving as a return specialist gives Peterson another way to impact games beyond his role at cornerback. He's shown during the preseason an ability to make big plays with the ball in his hands. He has playmaking instincts. I'd expect him to break a long return before long.
Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says expectations are rising for Rams quarterback Sam Bradford. Miklasz: "Bradford's overall play eroded down the stretch after alert opponents wisely began clamping down on his receivers' favorite routes in a successful ploy to take away his preferred go-to plays. And Bradford hardly was surrounded by an esteemed cast of playmakers in 2010. We can't dismiss that obvious factor. It was all a part of a rookie's education as part of a team-wide rebuilding project. I didn't use the numbers to disparage Bradford. He ran the system that was set up for him and he played well. More than that, Bradford transcended much of the statistical analysis by performing with a veteran's calm." Noted: The Rams have said they're not concerned about the talent at wide receiver. That does put the pressure on Bradford and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels to produce.