1. Any updates on contract talks with the remaining 11 picks? How close are we to getting most, if not all of them signed?
CI: There have been contract negotiations with all of the draft picks. However, some agents are leery of signing this early, especially the top picks. I don't expect talks to get serious with Dorsey until the New York Jets sign Vernon Gholston. However, I spoke with Clark Hunt last Thursday in St. Joseph and he told me they'd all be signed before the team leaves for River Falls.
2. The Atlanta Falcons cut saftey/cornerback Jimmy Williams. Is there any interest in bringing him in and signing him?
CI: I don't see where he fits on this football team. The Chiefs are happy with third-round pick DaJuan Morgan. He was lights out in OTAs and will push Bernard Pollard for a starting spot. Plus, Williams reportedly showed up overweight this offseason – not a good sign.
3. The NFL Network is reporting that if the Bucs trade or release quarterback Chris Simms that the Chiefs would be one of the teams looking to bring him in as a possible backup. Any truth to that rumor?
CI: I've heard that rumor for about three weeks. I don't see the Chiefs showing any interest in Simms. Brodie Croyle and Tyler Thigpen are both young and developing. They also have Damon Huard as insurance and I can't see the team letting him go at the moment.
4. Billy Cundiff has been cut - does that mean Connor Barth will likely be the kicker in New England?
CI: I think Barth has a legitimate shot to make this team. One, he has the best leg in camp. Second, he can drive the ball into the end zone on kickoffs. However, John Carney is sitting at home in San Diego and I would not be surprised if he's the guy who is kicking the ball for KC in the season opener instead of Barth or Nick Novak.
5. LB Johnny Baldwin was waived due to a failed physical - does this mean another draft pick has signed?
CI: Indeed the Chiefs signed wide receiver Will Franklin on Wednesday. Baldwin wasn't going to make the team anyway - his release could have been nothing more than just clearing some roster space.
6. Do you think Devard Darling will be the starter opposite D-Bowe or will it be Franklin or Webb?
CI: I'm rooting for Franklin. I think he has shown enough that it's a real competition among all three young receivers. Webb might be third right now of the group. Darling was solid in OTAs the last couple of weeks but Franklin caught nearly every pass thrown his way.
7. Do you see Brian Johnston starting week one with Dorsey and Boone as the defensive tackles?
CI: I don't think he'll be the starter come opening day, but I will predict he'll have at least six sacks his rookie season. Right now he's a backup and I think that's where he belongs, but he could see action in nickel situations when the Chiefs move Alfonso Boone inside and rotate Johnston and Turk McBride. I do believe Johnston will eventually start for this team and will someday be on par with Jared Allen. He is much farther along in his development right now than Allen was as a rookie.
8. Which fullbacks are atop the depth chart?
CI: Right now the top guy is Mike Cox. He knows the offense having been with Chan Gailey the last four years at Georgia Tech. I'm not a big fan of Oliver Hoyte. The Chiefs will have to make a decision on Cox and Hoyte because they won't carry two fullbacks - I think they'll have four running backs on the final roster.
9. Will Napoleon Harris be the starter in the middle over Donnie Edwards?
CI: That's a good question. I would not be opposed to moving Edwards back in the middle of the defense. Harris still has a lot to prove to the Chiefs. He was up and mostly down a year ago and he's not been a standout in OTAs. Only Derrick Johnson has looked comfortable. I think the battle to find the best three linebackers will go on throughout the entire preseason.
10. Are the Chiefs in the process of working out a long-term deal with Derrick Johnson or will that happen sometime during the season or next off season?
CI: There have not been any talks between the Chiefs and his agent. However, both sides, from what I hear, would like to get an extension done sometime this season. But the driving force in getting a deal done might be how Johnson starts 2008.
By all accounts, he should be an All-Pro this year. Having Gunther Cunningham as his linebackers coach can't hurt. I believe he won't be traded or cut loose by the Chiefs. I expect the two sides will get something done in the latter stages of 2008 or before the start of 2009.
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