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NFC Whispers

Bucs haven't made decision on Talib yet

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Posted May 01, 2011 @ 1:08 p.m. ET
By PFW staff

Following are whispers we've been hearing from around the NFC:

• Despite a report that suggested CB Aqib Talib was all but done as a member of the Buccaneers, PFW has confirmed that the Bucs plan to let the court process play out before making a decision on him. Talib has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in a March 21 incident, and it's not the first time the troubled fourth-year corner has had a run-in with the law. Talib is alleged to have fired gunshots at his sister's boyfriend after a domestic dispute.

Jay Cutler is the only quarterback under contract with the Bears through 2011 as of this writing, but GM Jerry Angelo said he intends to carry three QBs next season. Chicago is likely to re-sign restricted free agent Caleb Hanie and fifth-round draft pick Nathan Enderle has a good shot of making the roster as the developmental No. 3 QB. After the failed one-year stint with Todd Collins last season, the Bears are planning to steer clear of veteran free-agent quarterbacks this offseason. 

• Sooner or later, we hear, new Rams majority owner Stan Kroenke is expected to hire a team president to help him run the team. "Who that will be, I really don't know," one team insider said. "But once a new labor agreement is in place, I think that will happen."

• Our sources in Seattle believe the Seahawks could be playing with fire by putting only a third-round tender on starting DT Brandon Mebane. "They'll have the right of first refusal, but if there are teams looking for a solid three-technique, I can't imagine a better place to start than with Mebane," one team insider said. "The team really missed him when he was hurt."

• After turning 34 in March and with a salary of $5.75 million currently on the Cardinals' books in 2011, we hear it's looking more unlikely that OLB Joey Porter will be back this season. "The only way I see him staying is if he's willing to take less money and become a situational role player," one team insider said. "I think it's questionable whether he could handle a backup role."

• We hear it's hardly a given that Chilo Rachal will remain the starting right guard for the 49ers this season after having his share of struggles in pass protection last season. Look for Rachal to get a run for his money from versatile Adam Snyder, who some daily team observers believe should have started more frequently at the ORG spot in 2010. "The prior regime was really sold on Rachal. (Former head coach Mike) Singletary loved him," one team insider said. "I could see the position opening up now."

• If Packers free agent Daryn Colledge had his druthers, we're told the team's starting left guard last season probably would prefer to move on, provided he could make more money elsewhere. Entering the draft, the Packers' top options at left guard on the roster aside from Colledge were T.J. Lang and the promising Nick McDonald, who team insiders believe both could have really used the time to develop that has been taken away by the lockout.

• The Cowboys are looking to cut salary, knowing that a salary cap will be in place at some point and that they must come down from having the most expensive payroll in the NFL last season. Among the veterans likely to be a part of the cost-cutting process will be WR Roy Williams, ORT Marc Colombo, RB Marion Barber and ORG Leonard Davis. The team made several draft choices at these positions and wants to get younger — and cheaper — across the board.

• The Giants say that they drafted North Carolina DT Marvin Austin in Round Two because he's an enormous talent, and that might be true. But we hear it also might have been fueled by the growing belief that DT Barry Cofield, a strong performer in recent seasons, apparently wants out of town. Cofield, a free agent-to-be, reportedly is looking for a big payday he knows he won't get from the Giants.

• The Redskins will enter the free-agent market, whenever it opens, with a need at nose tackle. They have a few players who could factor in at the position, but it would surprise no one if the team tried to add reinforcements there. Roundly considered the best nose tackle on the market, 49ers NT Aubrayo Franklin is coming off a poor season but nonetheless could be a target in D.C.

• The Eagles, sources told PFW, had a potential deal in place to trade QB Kevin Kolb to the Cardinals before the draft, but those plans changed when veterans were not allowed to be dealt. It's very possible, however, that the Cardinals and Eagles could reignite those trade talks.

• The way we hear it, the Vikings have resigned themselves to losing DE Ray Edwards and are planning as if he will not return. It appears, though, that the team did enough in the draft where defensive end would not be a high-end priority in free agency. The bigger need is expected to be nose tackle, where longtime stalwart Pat Williams also isn't expected back — and there's no natural replacement on the roster.

• The reports about the health of Lions QB Matthew Stafford have been nothing but excellent, and the team believes he will head into the offseason program — whenever it begins — in excellent shape and ready to go.

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