The Miami Dolphins would have liked running back Ronnie Brown in camp days ago, but certainly not at any cost.
The Dolphins believe the contract signed by the first pick in the draft, quarterback Alex Smith with San Francisco is inflated and the team is unwilling to agree to a deal within 10 percent of Smith's deal with Brown. The latest coming out of South Beach is, both parties have grown closer in negotiations, with a considerable amount of work to do to get a deal in place. As a side note, Ricky Williams is looking good in his return to the team (hint-hint, will Williams be traded?) and free agent quarterback acquisition, Gus Frerotte has looked the best in his competition with A.J. Feeley.
Rumors of the Cleveland Browns and wide receiver Braylon Edwards coming to an agreement on a contract Monday were premature. While talks continue, the Browns and Edwards remain a football-field away in terms of guaranteed dollars and the signing bonus, which we hear could top the $20 million dollar plateau, if Edwards gets what he wants. As of this writing, the Browns have not coaxed Paul Warfield, Gary Collins, or even Reggie Rucker out of retirement to step in while Edwards waits on his deal.
Cedric Benson and the Chicago Bears, the entire negotiation process has head coach Lovie Smith seething. Smith has an issue with the young back sitting out, while the team prepares for the 2005 season. Benson stated he wanted to be in camp on time, but the negotiation process has been conducted at a snail's pace and Smith is none too happy. From all indications, the distance separating the Bears and Benson are further than those regarding the Dolphins and Brown, and the Browns and Edwards … we can only ask, why?
The Tennessee Titans and first-round draft choice Adam "Pac Man" Jones are not making progress in negotiations. At this time, the Titans do not appear to be very interested to intensify their position or attempts to get the talented, but troubled cornerback into camp.
Look for cornerback Antrell Rolle and the Arizona Cardinals to reach a contract agreement in the next week or so. Discussions have been slow, but progress has been made and it helps to have players selected in the area of Rolle (#8) agreeing to deals recently.