Buckeye News Around the Net 07/01/08
Brian Robiskie named, Adrian Clarke with the Ravens, Drew Carter could start for the Raiders, the Colts receivers doing well and more.
By Bill Smith
Brian Robiskie was named by Joe Schad ESPN as 5th best WR in the upcoming college season. He expects Robo to be an All American. Redshirt sophmore Michael Crabtree from Texas Tech was rated the number 1 WR in college by Schad.
Adrian Clarke the former Buckeye tackle has looked good in Raven OTAs. He is in the mix to compete for the starting left tackle position replacing future Hall of Fame Jonathan Ogden who retired earlier this off season. Clarke was not resigned by the Jets despite starting 14 games in 2007.
According to Sporting News, Drew Carter is in the mix along with Ronald Curry for a starting spot. The Raiders hope that the winner will start across from Javon Walker, the free agent with whom they signed a 6 year $55 million dollar contract. Walker is coming off a major injury in 2007. Carter signed a 1 year 2 million dollar contract with the Raiders. The Raiders want a more down-field style offense to take advantage of the arm strength of 07 #1 pick QB JaMarcus Russell. Carter and Walker give them the outside speed to accomplish that goal.
In other Raider news Jay Richardson is working hard to stay on the field all three downs this year. Last year he was the starter at defensive end against the run but only managed one sack. Commenting on the issue for USA Today, head coach Kiffin said "I think Jay's developing a pass rush. That's what he lacked last year. He played the run very well for us and has continued to improve on it. We're not going to rotate just to rotate. If we can find a guy we can leave out that does both, we'll do that. Jay knows what he needs to do to improve."
Despite Marvin Harrison's combination of nagging injuries, advancing age, and legal issues revolving (excuse the pun) around a shooting outside his tavern, the Colts are not nervous about their receiving corps. Harrison had just 20 catches in the 5 games he was able to play in last year. But former Buckeye Anthony Gonzalez stepped in and the offense didn't miss a beat. This year, the Colts seem totally comfortable with Gonzalez starting opposite Reggie Wayne.
In addition, Roy Hall, the 5th round choice of the Colts in 2007, figures to see the field more often as well.
Former Buckeye Joey Galloway turns 37 this year. Despite his age, he is still one of the most explosive wideouts in the league. For several years, Galloway has had to contend with double and triple coverage on every play because the Bucs have not been able to find a second receiver to take some pressure off him. This year again, Tampa Bay has brought in several suspects to help out. The leading candidate is Galloway's pupil second-round pick WR Dexter Jackson. Galloway said recently “I will absolutely try to teach him everything that I’ve learned, everything that I know. He’s a smaller guy, he’s a fast guy, he’s a quick guy, and that’s more of the things I’m used to and those are things that I can sort of help him with.” The issue at this point is still in doubt whether any of the other receivers can step up and do the job.
Several teams have expressed interest in the services of now free agent LeCharles Bentley. While the names were not disclosed, the teams were expected to be San Francisco, St. Louis, Baltimore, Miami, and Kansas City.
According to Pro Football Weekly, RB Antonio Pittman is battling with RB Brian Leonard for the No. 2 running back position. Pittman got on the field in game 6 last year. Leonard was projected to be the starting fullback when he was drafted. Now the team will use a one back set more often and want to give starting back Steven Jackson some rest. Under Mike Martz, there wasn't much call for running the ball. Now, the Rams realize that they need to establish the run in part to slow the pass rush.
In what has become an ongoing saga of inaction, the Jones/Glenn feud seems to be at a standstill. In an interview with ESPN radio, Glenn said he did not want to be released unless the team will only let him play if he signs the ½ million dollar injury waver. On the good side, there are rumors that Bill Parcells would like to bring Glenn to Miami if he is released by Dallas. Parcells brought him to Dallas when he coached them. Nothing has been said because NFL rules forbid a staff member of one team from talking about a player under contract to another team.
Despite being confident that he can make a big impact, Jet head coach Eric Mangini told reporters that he wants to bring 1st round choice Vernon Gholston along slowly. In the Belichick style defense, the linebackers have to make reads and often switch assignments on the snap. As a result, it is difficult for anyone to step in and start game 1. However, he also said that Gholston is coming along very well and is learning his new position faster than the coach expected.
The Atlanta Falcons cut C Doug Datish. When he was drafted in 07, the staff felt that he was the center of the future. That staff is gone. Now the Falcons want to go with a veteran so they brought in Todd McClure. However, Bruce Wilkerson will battle ex-Buckeye Alex Stepanovich for the backup spot.
Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for http://BrutusReport.com. He has also published several novels on http://ebooks-library.com/index.cfm and edits http://fryingpanpolitics.blog.com