Inside Dish: Raiders hope Brooks and Moss connect

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Inside Dish: Raiders hope Brooks and Moss connect
May 21, 2006

Dan Pompei


The hope in Oakland is new QB Aaron Brooks will be better for WR Randy Moss than Kerry Collins was. Moss needs a quarterback who can extend the play so he can get open deep, and Brooks buys time in the pocket better than Collins. Moss isn't the kind of receiver who creates separation on short and intermediate routes, so he needs time for plays to develop to be at his best. The Raiders' revamped line could benefit Moss for the same reason. . . .

The Eagles believe RG Shawn Andrews, a 2004 first-round pick, will take his game to the Pro Bowl level this season, in part because he has become more serious about his conditioning. Andrews has lost 20 pounds and could lose as much as 30 before training camp. What inspired the weight loss? Andrews' best friend recently died of a heart attack at 23. . . .

The Bears are pleased with Rashied Davis' conversion to wide receiver from cornerback. Davis, who scored 74 touchdowns in two years as an Arena League receiver before signing with the Bears in 2005, looks like a natural at the position and might be able to play in the slot on passing downs. For the first time in his life, he is in a solid training and nutrition program. Davis has put on close to 10 pounds of lean muscle for Bears strength and conditioning coordinator Rusty Jones. . . .

One Bengal to keep an eye on is third-year LB Landon Johnson. Coach Marvin Lewis is high on Johnson's potential. Some close to the team believe Johnson could beat out Brian Simmons and crack the starting lineup. Johnson plays all three linebacker spots and is fast enough to stay on the field in nickel defenses. Even if he doesn't start, he could make a significant impact. . . .

Although he didn't play in 2005, LB Anthony Simmons is expected to start for the Saints this season. After a seven-year career with the Seahawks, Simmons found teams were cool to him because they questioned his attitude. The Saints, fearful of bringing in the wrong type of player at the start of coach Sean Payton's regime, had Simmons in for two days of interviews, then interviewed him for the better part of another day via telephone. Since Simmons signed in March, he has been working out with the team regularly and impressing coaches with his conditioning. The Saints hope they have unearthed a gem in the former first-round pick. . . .

The Rams' free-agent additions of DT La'Roi Glover, LB Will Witherspoon and S Corey Chavous will add speed and leadership to the defense. During early field work and in the offseason conditioning program, the Rams' staff has found the new players to be extensions of the coaches. . . .

Under the heavy hand of defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham, Chiefs MLB Kawika Mitchell started to figure it out last year in his third season. The hope in Kansas City is Mitchell will take the next step this year by becoming a tone setter who plays with higher intensity. It helps that Mitchell is surrounded by talented LBs Derrick Johnson and Kendrell Bell.
http://www.sportingnews.com/yourturn/viewtopic.php?t=94359
 
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