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Inside Slant

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Mar 4, 2006.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

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    Source: <a target="_blank" href="http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/chargers/home.htm">USA Today</a>
    <div class="intro-copy">It's looking more likely that Drew Brees has played his last game with the Chargers.</div>
    <p class="intro-copy">Brees, who is coming off shoulder surgery and becoming a free agent, isn't making any headway with the Chargers over a long-term deal. The team low-balled him with their first offer, and have basically presented a take-it-or-leave it stance.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">The Chargers are concerned with Brees' arm strength after surgery to repair a torn labrum and a slight tear in the rotator cuff. Brees and noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews, who did the procedure, are confident Brees will be recover fully.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">But the Chargers aren't so sure, and with Philip Rivers on the roster, it appears they are set to let Brees flee and turn what could be a playoff-team over to a quarterback with no NFL starts and 30 career attempts.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">Brees, who at 27 has already been to one Pro Bowl and appears to be hitting his stride as an NFL quarterback, is baffled by the Chargers' assertion that he is damaged goods.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy"> "There has not been a setback of any kind,'' he said. "In fact, it seems like every bit of information that comes out of the organization talking about my progress or surgery has been incorrect.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">"Talk to anybody who knows, which is my doctor, Dr. Andrews, or my physical therapist, who is here doing my stuff. They will tell you exactly where I am and that is way ahead of the game. The surgery went exceptionally well and my body has responded very well.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">"If the surgery wasn't done properly, would I be four weeks ahead of schedule? I don't think so. I would be having problems right now. I've been rehabbing my butt off and I'll be throwing by the beginning of May. I will have been throwing for almost three months when training camp opens.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">"The doctors think everything is just fine and everyone knows that I will be just fine. Rumors are being spread to discredit me or the people working with me, to scare other people off. But it doesn't matter; I know what I can do. I invite anyone to come see me work. All those rumors are just false."</p>
    <p class="intro-copy"><strong>NOTES, QUOTES</strong></p>
    <p class="intro-copy">-Coach Marty Schottenheimer said he's disappointed in the level of communication he has with Smith. The two never have had a warm relationship and it seems to becoming more strained. With Wade Phillips - a Smith favorite - on the staff, this situation is worth watching.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">-If QB Drew Brees does indeed exit, Philip Rivers becomes the starter with veteran A. J. Feeley as the backup. Smith said he would add two more quarterbacks for training camp; one year, the Chargers carried three quarterbacks on the regular roster. Although that doesn't seem likely for this year.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">Brees said he hears all the time from teammates unable to grasp the reality that he will likely playing elsewhere next season.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">"All of them are just pretty shocked and trying to understand it," Brees said. "We have a great opportunity, but it seems like that opportunity is kind of slowly being pushed away."</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">-The Chargers didn't have to scramble to release players last week in dealing with the delayed implementation of the new salary cap. They have some $20 million to play with.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">"We have a lot of money to do a lot of things,'' Smith said. "We've had the last couple of years and will next year also.''</p>
    <p class="intro-copy"><strong>QUOTE TO NOTE:</strong> "We put a value on that player. We submit it to the agent, and they may be very happy to have that because it may be six teams involved, then the fun and games begin. With us there are no fun and games. It's a value, an amount of money." - General manager A.J. Smith on how the Chargers approach free agency, in regard to negotiating with available players.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy"><strong>STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL</strong></p>
    <p class="intro-copy">FRANCHISE PLAYER: None.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">TRANSITION PLAYER: None.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: QB Drew Brees; WR Reche Caldwell; CB Jamar Fletcher; OG Bob Hallen; ILB Ben Leber; TE Justin Peelle; DE DeQuincy Scott.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: ILB Stephen Cooper; OL Kris Dielman; OL Courtney VanBuren; LB Matt Wilhelm.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENTS: WR Drew Haddad; LB Howard Hodges; RB Calvin Murray.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">PLAYERS RE-SIGNED: S Clinton Hart; WR Kassim Osgood; DE Jacques Cesaire; LB Carlos Polk; FB Andrew Pinnock.</p>
    <p class="intro-copy">PLAYERS LOST: S Jerry Wilson.</p>
     

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