morning wrap

By | April 23, 2015

More Mariota to Philly talk; new twist in ‘L’affaire pattes du crabbe,’ hilite daily roundup … It was the first rumor with legs in this year’s draft cycle and while it has kind of drifted into the background in recent weeks speculation that Philadelphia, and head coach and G.M. Chip Kelly in particular, are still thinking seriously about trying to acquire Oregon QB Marcus Mariota in this year’s draft just won’t go away. And that speculation has gotten some new life in the past day or so with news that the Eagles have not had any meaningful discussion with QB Sam Bradford, whom Philadelphia acquired in a trade with St. Louis earlier this year. The assumption is that if the Eagles were indeed committed to Bradford, who has only one year left on his contract, they would have entered some kind of talks with him about an extension. On the other hand, if Bradford was ultimately going to play elsewhere, then presumably any new team would want to work their own arrangement. Of course, it was always a bit of a long-shot that the Eagles would ever be able to get from the 20th pick overall to the 2nd where they would be almost guaranteed getting Mariota, who played for Kelly when he coached at Oregon, although the one scenario that would appear to work for just about everybody would be for Cleveland to acquire the 2nd pick from Tennessee for the 12th and 19th picks and then send #2 to Philadelphia for Bradford and the 20th pick … Former Florida State Jameis Winston, who is projected to be the first player selected this year, added a new twist to the incident in which he was arrested for allegedly stealing $30 or so worth of crab legs from a local grocery when he said that a store employee had actually given him permission to take whatever food he wanted given his celebrity. And while that may get Winston off the hook for stealing, its not quite in the clear on that one as it is also a violation of NCAA rules for athletes to accept improper benefits like free crab legs. No word yet though whether the NCAA is considering taking away the Seminoles’ 2013 national championship over the report, but no doubt they are investigating. Meanwhile, it now appears that Winston will not make a pre-draft visit with the Jets in New York after all. The Jets had originally hoped to hold a private workout with Winston, but that never happened because of scheduling conflicts – which in itself was a little hard to believe – and now his visit with the Jets is reportedly off too. Hard to know what it means other than it certainly doesn’t look like Winston is destined to play for the Jets, although it is interesting in the sense that the Jets would appear to have been the only team that could have reasonably traded up to the #1 pick to get Winston … The fact that the NFL has suspended Dallas DE Greg Hardy for the first ten games of the upcoming season may have thrown a bit of a wrench into the Cowboys’ draft plans. Dallas had hoped that Hardy might only be suspended for 4-6 games and they would have him for the better part of the upcoming season. And with nobody else at the position, Dallas may have to invest another early pick on the position to get them over the hump this coming fall, although its still unlikely the Cowboys would use their first rounder on a DE. Speaking of the Cowboys, they remain the favorite to ultimately land Minnesota RB Adrian Peterson who has been re-instated by the league. Peterson has made it clear he does not want to return to the Vikings and would prefer to finish out his career in his hometown. And after losing DeMarco Murray to Philadelphia the Cowboys have to be very interested, but at what cost for a 30-year old RB with a huge cap hit. Dallas, though, is not the only team interested in acquiring Peterson though as Arizona, Oakland and Baltimore have also reportedly at least kicked the tires on a possible deal … With a week to go before the draft, players are still being moved around draft boards around boards around the league. A couple of defensive linemen who appear to be gaining traction are Florida State DE Mario Edwards, who has impressed at pre-draft workouts after dropping some weight this off-season, and Clemson DT Grady Jarrett. Neither guy is likely to be a first rounder next week, but neither may have to wait all that long on the second day to hear their name called …