Around The NFL: News, Notes & Rumors

Carson Palmer's house in the Cincinnati area sold, Detroit QB Matthew Stafford is ready for the 2011 campaign, Matt Hasselbeck's feelings were hurt by Seattle and much more inside.

Lofton,Curtis (Atlanta Falcons) (5/16/2011)

LB Curtis Lofton has been working in the offseason to recover from surgeries on both knees. Said Lofton, "The offseason has been pretty busy for me. I had a couple of surgeries done. I've been rehabbing and coming back from those. That's pretty much what I've been doing. Working out and getting ready for when the lockout is (over) with.
Cutler,Jay (Chicago Bears) (5/16/2011)

QB Jay Cutler told the Chicago Sun-Times the team's offensive players will soon be getting together for workouts.

Cutler said, "Now is the time for everyone to kind of get together and brush it off, and we're going to do that here in the next couple of weeks. Everything is locked and loaded."

Asked if it could happen this week, Cutler said, "Maybe. We'll see. We're about to do something here soon enough. But no one is probably going to know about it."

Noting that players in attendance will be on the offensive side of the ball, Cutler said, "I mean, those defenders have been in the system for eight years, nine years. "What are they gonna do? What am I going to tell Lach (linebacker Brian Urlacher)? 'Your drop is a little short. Sorry, buddy.' Offensively, we have a lot of room to improve."

Cutler said his knee, which was injured in the team's conference championship game loss to Green Bay, is "good to go. It feels good."

He was also pleased to see the team select tackle Gabe Carimi in the first round of the draft.

"I love it, anytime an offensive guy gets picked," Cutler said. "To me, it's like a new toy we get to play with, so it's fun."
Whitworth,Andrew (Cincinnati Bengals) (5/16/2011)

OT Andrew Whitworth lauded quarterback Jordan Palmer and linebacker Rey Maualuga for getting players together to practice together.

Now, Whitworth is getting his fellow offensive linemen into the act. About 20 teammates journeyed to his hometown of West Monroe, La., Sunday for his annual golf tournament. After the festivities, seven linemen will remain there and work out.

Said Whitworth, "I'm not an old veteran but I've always had older veterans around me. To see some of the younger guys take a role, step up and want to take control is good. For a guy like Jordan who doesn't know what his role is going to be and for Rey to organize things says a lot."

Whitworth got a copy of new offensive coordinator Jay Gruden's playbook on April 29, the one day official work this offseason, and he said it will be productive having the linemen go through it.

He told the Cincinnati Enquirer, "It's going to be different in terms of terminology and the plays are called differently but I really like it. Guys are going to have to get into it. I like Jay mostly because of his attitude and how he seems to go about things. After a season like we had we want to kind of avenge it."

Attending the golf tournament will be rookie quarterback Andy Dalton and rookie guard Clint Boling.

Of Dalton, Whitworth said, "I was excited for him to be willing to come down and sit down and meet a lot of his teammates. I like his attitude. The guy definitely is a winner and is coming from a winning atmosphere."
Palmer,Carson (Cincinnati Bengals) (5/16/2011)

QB Carson Palmer has had his house for sale in Indian Hill since March. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the house has been sold, although it is not known how close Palmer got to the asking price of $2.1 million.

Comey & Shepherd Realtors now lists the house as under contract. The stone and brick house is on five acres and has 5 1/2 bedrooms, a gourmet kitchen, swimming pool, solarium, spa, golf green and pond.

The listing describes the house as "an exceptional home that exudes comfort, character and privacy."
Cox,Perrish (Denver Broncos) (5/16/2011)

CB Perrish Cox entered a plea of not guilty Monday in Castle Rock, Colo., to charges of sexual assault that have a maximum punishment of life in prison.

Cox was arrested Dec. 9 following the assault that allegedly occurred on Sept. 6. He was charged with one count of sexual assault while the victim was physically helpless and one count of sexual assault while the victim was incapable of determining the nature of the conduct.

A trial date was set for Oct. 18.
Bush,Reggie (New Orleans Saints) (5/16/2011)

RB Reggie Bush now says he shouldn't have written what he did when the Saints draft running back Mark Ingram.

After the Saints traded into the end of the first round and selected Ingram, Bush tweeted, "Its been fun New Orleans."

Bush wants to make it clear he hopes to be back with the team and would welcome Ingram. Of course, there is the matter of his contract, which is scheduled to pay him nearly $12 million this season.

As for the tweet, Bush said at his football camp at Tulane University this past weekend, "Obviously sometimes you write things or say things that you wish you shouldn't have. I probably shouldn't have written that."

He then told the New Orleans Times Picayune he wants "first and foremost" to remain with the Saints, and added, "I don't know how much (Ingram) impacts my decision because we haven't come to the table yet, we haven't sat down yet. That's something that me and my agent and the Saints have to collectively come together and talk about and just come to a happy medium. Obviously there's going to have to be some type of pay cut and some type of renegotiations and we'll do the best we can to come to a happy meeting point and hopefully I'll be able to play for the Saints for six, seven, eight - 10 more years."

As for his own role in the offense, Bush said, "If anybody knows about sharing it's me; I've been doing it my whole career. So I welcome him with open arms."
Edwards,Braylon (New York Jets) (5/16/2011)

WR Braylon Edwards failed to appear in court Monday in the continuing of a DWI case that occurred during the 2010 season. Attorney Peter Frankel said Edwards' flight from Los Angeles was delayed.

Pre-trial hearings have been scheduled for July 22, but Frankel hopes to potentially settle it prior to then.

"It's possible we'll work things out before the 22nd," he said.
Mebane,Brandon (Seattle Seahawks) (5/16/2011)

DT Brandon Mebane wonders what his future is with the team.

Mebane has four accrued seasons, which would make him restricted free agent if the league eventually plays the 2011 season under last season's rules. He was tendered by the team before the lockout, but at the lowest level.

"I feel like I wasn't in their plans," he told the Tacoma News Tribune. "And I feel like I have that right to think that because I got a third-round tender. If they really wanted me, they had plenty of time to do what they had to do. Me personally, from my experience, I don't think I was in their plans. I would love to come back here, but I don't know what their plans are."
Grimm,Cody (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) (5/16/2011)

S Cody Grimm told the Tampa Tribune he is about 85-90 percent recovered from a broken fibula he suffered against the Baltimore Ravens on Nov. 28.

Said Grimm, "They pretty much put a plate and some screws in there and reattached the fibula. I had to stay off of it for nine weeks. Then they went in and took out one of the screws that holds my fibula and tibia close together so the cartilage can grow back together and get strong in between there.

"Once that happens, the fibula is good to go. Then it's all about getting the strength back and the motion back. That's the key. The bone is not the issue. Once the plate is in there, it's stronger than before."

Grimm started nine games as a rookie, and had 61 tackles, plus 10 on special teams, and two interceptions.

He is looking forward to getting back on the field, whenever that happens.

"If we had (voluntary workouts), I think I'd be able to practice," Grimm said. "The thing right now is it's not quite as strong. I've noticed the leg gets sore faster. That's the main issue, which is getting the strength back now.

"My main concern was getting all the motion back in my foot and I've done that. Now it's just about getting my leg as strong as the other leg."

Cherilus,Gosder (Detroit Lions) (5/17/2011)

OT Gosder Cherilus will visit his doctor in about a month to get an update on his progress from microfracture surgery. Cherilus played 12 games last season before suffering the injury.

He was participating in drills with teammates at the player-organized workouts.

"I'm on schedule, just getting my knee strength back and doing what I'm asked to do," he said. "You saw everything I just did. I just did everything they put me through and we're still progressing."
Stafford,Matthew (Detroit Lions) (5/17/2011)

QB Matthew Stafford played in only three games last season and underwent surgery on his throwing shoulder. He says he now feels "as good as I ever have. I feel like I've done everything I possibly can this offseason to prepare to be healthy and go out there and play. I think if I can stay healthy and the rest of our team can stay healthy, that's a big part of it, we can be pretty good."

As for the surgery, he said, "I just felt like it was the best thing for me. I had the opportunity to kind of fix it and put it behind me and I wanted to go ahead and do it."
Hill,Shaun (Detroit Lions) (5/17/2011)

QB Shaun Hill has had shoulder surgery and two finger surgeries since the 2010 season ended.

He played the final two games of the season with the broken finger, and had the first surgeries after the season in January. When he tried throwing last week, there were some issues, so he had a second surgery on the finger May 11.

Hill said, "I tried to go through some stuff and see how it would hold up, and decided I'd go ahead (with surgery). It definitely would have affected me throughout the season, so I decided to go get it done now."

As for the shoulder, he said, "It feels good. It's been good for a while and it keeps getting better, which is a good thing. It's always scary when you're facing surgery, but the good thing was, there was no rotator cuff or ligament damage. Nothing really major. They just went in and fixed it up. It felt bad for a week and then I got right after it. It has healed up really well."
Cobb,Randall (Green Bay Packers) (5/17/2011)

WR Randall Cobb will be working out in Phoenix this week with Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald thanks to an invitation from Packers wide receiver Greg Jennings.

Cobb said Jennings contacted him after the draft and suggested he make the trip to Phoenix.

"I'm really looking forward to that," Cobb said. "There will be a lot of good receivers and quarterbacks there. They're going to help me to be an NFL receiver. I'll be there two weeks for sure or as soon as the lockout is over."

Cobb said when he heard from Jennings, he told him, "I really want to hook up with him and Aaron (Rodgers) and learn as much as I can. He invited me out there and said if I needed a place to stay he would help me out. I'm really looking forward to working out with him."

As for the current situation in the NFL, Cobb said, "Normally at this time I'd be at minicamp and learning the system. The way things are now, we don't get that opportunity. It's a little bit difficult, but hopefully we'll be in soon."
Ponder,Christian (Minnesota Vikings) (5/17/2011)

QB Christian Ponder said he's going to work out soon in Florida with Vikings receivers Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice. Harvin usually works out in Tampa and Rice in Miami.

Said Ponder, "I hope it happens. That's something I'm looking forward to. It'd be great to spend time with those guys on the field."

Ponder received a playbook the day after the first round of the draft, the only day that this offseason that work has been allowed by NFL players at team facilities.
Coleman,Erik (Atlanta Falcons) (5/19/2011)

S Erik Coleman is looking forward to a new start.

Coleman was released by the Falcons on Feb. 9 and signed by the Lions 13 days later.

Participating in the team's player-organized workouts this week, Coleman said, "It was a frustrating situation (with Atlanta). I got hurt in Week 1 and missed three or four games. When I came back, I didn't play any more. That's how it goes in this league. Somebody gets an opportunity and they take advantage of it.

"I am not bitter. I am excited to be here. When I was released, my agent told me Detroit had been interested. So I came here on a trip and I loved the energy of the coaching staff and they have great facilities. It's just a great organization and I am honored they wanted to bring me in a soon as they did."

He will be competing with Amari Spievey for a starting job. He said, "I will help the team any way I can."
Peterson,Mike (Atlanta Falcons) (5/19/2011)

LB Mike Peterson has been participating with the Atlanta Falcons at player-organized workouts despite the fact his contract has expired, and he will be a free agent when the lockout ends.

"It's a little awkward feeling," he said. "But this is the place that I want to be. I want to be here and I've heard they want me here. I have a feeling that they want me back in whatever role that may be. That's the approach that I'm taking."

As for players participating, Peterson said, "It's what we do. In order to be great at what you do, you have to work at it. That's the way I was brought up. That's what I believe in. You've got to get the work in. You just can't turn the switch on when it's time to play football. This is just a stepping stone to that."

Asked about the uncertainty of being unsigned, he concluded, "It's a little rough being in limbo and not knowing. But they've expressed that they want me back or whatever. I'm just taking the approach that this is where I want to be. This is exactly where I hope to be. That's the approach that I've been taking this whole offseason."
Dareus,Marcell (Buffalo Bills) (5/19/2011)

DL Marcell Dareus was picked third overall in the draft, but he still has a bone to pick with Carolina and Denver, the two teams in front of the Bills that picked someone else.

Appearing on WQAM Radio in Miami, Dareus said, "If I ever get a chance to play Carolina, I'm going to make them pay for passing up on me. Denver I'll get a chance to play them in the regular season and I'm going to make it hell for them every time I play against them."

He added, "My sole focus was for me not to give you a reason to not pick me and you still don't? OK, I understand you have needs somewhere else, but if you need somebody to control your front and be a commander across the front and not let anything happen? I work my butt off to do that, and you pass me up still? OK, I've got something for you."
Stafford,Matthew (Detroit Lions) (5/19/2011)

QB Matthew Stafford, in addition to rehabbing from his surgery, also worked out hard and was described as now having a "chiseled upper body."

Wide receiver Nate Burleson was impressed by what he saw. "Yeah, he looks really good," Burleson said. "It's good to see Matt out here zipping that ball around. It's what I saw and felt when I first got to Detroit last season, which was Matt at his best."

Stafford said he worked out for more than two months after the surgery in Pensacola, Fla., at the Andrews Institute.

He said, "(I was) just doing everything they told me to do. The therapists and trainers had me going every day, sometimes twice a day for more than 10 weeks.

"I just listened to the trainers. I wanted them to tell me what is going to help get this (shoulder) problem behind me. It wasn't about doing a bunch of bench presses. It was more back and shoulder. That's what I concentrated on and it feels great now."
Hill,Shaun (Detroit Lions) (5/19/2011)

QB Shaun Hill had back surgery last week, not finger surgery, as was originally reported.

Despite the surgery, Hill has done some light throwing and jogging at team workouts this week.

"It's kind of been bugging me for a while, but last year, (I) was able to get through the season," Hill said of his back problem. "I had a little injection before the season, and it helped me out and got me through it. This year, the injection didn't quite help, so I opted for the surgery."

After the surgery, Hills said he was told it would be four-to-six weeks to be recovered enough to play a game.

He concluded, "It's been great. I'm six days post-op, and I'm running a little bit. I can't throw extended stuff. The rotation, I don't want to overdo it there. But I feel great. I'm glad I did it. Wish I would have done it earlier."
Peterman,Stephen (Detroit Lions) (5/19/2011)

OG Stephen Peterman said he is recovered from a foot injury that bothered him for virtually the entire 2010 season even though he never missed a start or even a practice.

Peterman said the injury, a torn muscle in the ball of his foot, occurred in the second game of the season. He often played with a plate in his show to protect the foot.

Said Peterman, "Some days were better than others but I got through it. I didn't need surgery. All I needed was a month or two to rest it and it's all good now.

"I just didn't want to give up on the guys. I didn't want to be out again because I got hurt (knee) the year before and had surgery. It (was a bummer), you know, but you sign a contract and people count on you. You don't want to let them down so you go out there and you grin and bear it."
Casillas,Jonathan (New Orleans Saints) (5/19/2011)

LB Jonathan Casillas was on his way to being the team's starter on the weak side last season when he suffered a foot injury in the team's final preseason game. That ended his season.

Now, Casillas is back, and says he will be ready and 100 percent for training camp with the goal to reclaim the job.

"I'm right on pace," Casillas said. "We haven't played football yet, and you never really know until you get out there and start doing things like that. But I'm taking my time. I'm not in a rush to do anything, full boar, as of right now given the lockout situation. I feel like that's in my favor."
Seymour,Richard (Oakland Raiders) (5/19/2011)

DT Richard Seymour will be paying for teammates to come to Atlanta next week for a conditioning camp that will include swimming, weight lifting and nutritional counseling.

Seymour sent an email to teammates that said, "Men, I hope everyone is well and is staying in shape because we are going to out-work everyone we face this season, and it starts right now in the offseason."
Ward,Hines (Pittsburgh Steelers) (5/19/2011)

WR Hines Ward advanced to the final round of Dancing With the Stars this week, despite an almost catastrophic neck injury suffered by partner Kym Johnson three days before Monday's competition.

The final round will take place next Monday (May 23).

In practice May 13, Ward fell on Johnson's back, as her neck and head hit the floor head first.

"I was supposed to swing her through my legs and lift her up, but all my weight just came down on the back of her neck," Ward said. "For me, I'm sick because that was one of my biggest things: I didn't want to drop her."

Johnson was shown laying on the floor with Ward next to her, saying, "I can't feel my arms."

Johnson was immobilized, put in a brace and taken to the hospital. Fortunately, she suffered only soreness and was cleared to dance the day of the competition. Amazing, in both their dances, they got perfect scores of 10 from each judge.

Ward was near tears after the first dance, the Argentine tango, which was the one where the injury had occurred.

"Praise God she's still walking. She's a warrior," Ward said of Johnson, who admitted, "I really didn't want to dance." vHost Tom Bergeron said, "That's a long way from Friday, my friends. That was clearly an emotional dance for our dancers and some of our judges, as well."

Judge Carrie Ann Inaba said, "I'm just happy you're OK, because that was a serious injury."

The show also featured interviews with present and former Steelers, including club president Art Rooney II, coach Mike Tomlin, safety Troy Polamalu and former coach Bill Cowher.

Said Rooney, "I'm very impressed that Hines has made it to the semifinals (now finals). He's very determined to win this thing, so I wouldn't count him out."

Ward's performance surprised even his mother. Kim Young-hee said, "I'm shocked, really. I tell him, 'You don't know nothing about the dancing. Maybe you go one week. You're going to fail.'" Cowher said, "Hines Ward's determination is bas
Taylor,Ike (Pittsburgh Steelers) (5/19/2011)

CB Ike Taylor is scheduled to be a free agent when the lockout ends, but he made clear on the Jim Rome is Burning show that there won't be a hometown discount.

"I need that market value. I work so hard," Taylor said. "I've been through so much, I feel so unappreciated, feel so underrated at my position, I feel like it's my time to get my worth, in whatever city that's in."

As for staying with the Steelers, he said, "I would love to, but they usually sign player a year before (free agency), so we'll see what happens."
Smith,Alex (San Francisco 49ers) (5/19/2011)

QB Alex Smith talked with reporters for Comcast Sports Net Bay Area and the Sacramento Bee, and while he didn't want to be directly quoted, Smith said he will probably re-sign with the team when the lockout ends. Smith has been working out with teammates.

Smith noted that the playbook given to him by coach Jim Harbaugh is similar to what it was in 2005 when he was a rookie. The offensive coordinator then was Mike McCarthy, now the head coach of the Packers.
Hasselbeck,Matt (Seattle Seahawks) (5/19/2011)

QB Matt Hasselbeck said he was a little miffed when the team distributed playbooks during the one-day lifting of the lockout.

Never mind that Hasselbeck is unsigned. He told 710 ESPN Radio in Seattle, "I didn't get one. It definitely hurt my feelings, but it's alright because all my teammates gave me theirs. So it worked out. It worked out fine."

It remains to be seen whether talks for a new contract will work out fine.
Talib,Aqib (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) (5/19/2011)

CB Aqib Talib had his grand jury hearing changed from May 18 to May 25.

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