From the Wire- AZ Quiet, NFC West Rumbling

While the Cardinals player wire was quiet this week with all the same stories panning itself out, the NFC West has a lot going on. Quarterback battles here, demands for a new contract there, beginning to sound familiar? AZRedReport.com takes a peek into the NFC West player wires.

Alex Smith, San Francisco 49ers

QBs Alex Smith and Shaun Hill will be the main competitors for the starting job once training camp opens, coach Mike Nolan said. Smith and Hill will each start one of the first two exhibition games. Ideally, the 49ers would like to have a starter named for the third exhibition game.

"Once a guy is the guy, he better stay ready and stay atop his game," Nolan said. "It's not like this is a locked-in job forever. The objective is to win games and you have to be at top of your game to win games."

Vernon Davis, San Francisco 49ers

TE Vernon Davis said he is learning the 49ers' new offensive system under Mike Martz by watching a lot of film of the St. Louis Rams and Detroit Lions. But Davis is not studying the tight ends on those teams.

"No, he'll show the receivers," Davis said. "They're the same routes."

Davis said he is running a lot of the same routes that such receivers as Torry Holt and new teammate Isaac Bruce ran during their time together at the Rams with Martz.

Steven Jackson, St. Louis Rams

RB Steven Jackson almost sounds as though he realizes a new contract won't happen before the start of the season.

In a recent interview with Yahoo!'s Michael Silver, Jackson talked about the importance of the upcoming season for the entire organization, including coach Scott Linehan.

"It's a one-year bid for everybody," Jackson said. "It could be Scott's last year, and my last year, and even the franchise is in jeopardy -- the team could get sold and leave St. Louis. There's a lot riding on this year, and we all know that. Just as much as the Rams need me, I need them."

Then, most recently, Jackson talked again about the situation while in Oregon helping out at Browns quarterback Derek Anderson's youth camp.

Asked about the prospect of entering the final year of his contract, Jackson told the Portland Tribune, "A contract year is big for anyone, but especially for the last year of a rookie deal. I'm looking to have a great year and lengthen my career with St. Louis. Hopefully, I'll retire as a Ram.

"But it all comes down to performance, and then negotiations. I think it will happen. The Rams have been good to me. I don't see any reason why I wouldn't be there (next year)."

Keenan Burton, St. Louis Rams

WR Keenan Burton, one of the team's two fourth-round picks, reached agreement on a three-year contract with the team July 3. However, a week later, Burton still hadn't actually signed the contract.

Red Bryant, Seattle Seahawks

DT Red Bryant said he can bench press 450 pounds -- despite never doing any serious weight training. "I don't know how I do it," Bryant said. "Cornbread. Cornbread."


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