The San Diego Chargers have talent at wide receiver, but Robert Meachem remains an expensive enigma.
The former New Orleans Saints wideout totaled just 14 catches in 15 games in 2012 after signing a four-year, $25.9 million contract. He's arguably last year's worst free-agent signing.
CBSSports.com's Clark Judge reported Meachem's $14 million in guarantees might keep him on the roster, but "people close to the club told me they're convinced he won't be a factor."
The team loves Vincent Brown, while Malcom Floyd, Danario Alexander and Eddie Royal were more productive than Meachem in offseason practices. Throw in tight end Antonio Gates and pass-catching back Danny Woodhead, and it's hard to see where Meachem fits in. We wouldn't be surprised if the new regime washes its hands of him.
Other nuggets from around the NFL:
SI.com's Peter King, on hand at this week's Broncos practice, tweeted that rookie running back Montee Ball looks "better" than second-year pro Ronnie Hillman. King predicts Ball will earn the starting job over time. Meanwhile, team executive John Elway called free-agent signee Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie the best cover cornerback in the NFL, according to King. We took a look at DRC in our Making the Leap series and have a tough time agreeing with Mr. Elway.
New England Patriots
Tom E. Curran's in-depth report from Pats camp:
Rich Campbell of The Washington Times reports that sixth-round draft pick Bacarri Rambo is taking snaps at safety with the Redskins' first-string defense. Washington's secondary isn't a strength, so it's little surprise Rambo's being given an opportunity to play. On offense, 6-foot-8 right tackle Jeremy Trueblood is rusty. "He labored in his strides on separate plays during team drills," Campbell noted.
Curiosities about Chip Kelly's offense have dominated headlines in Philly, but how about the defense? PhillyMag.com's Sheil Kapadia reports the Eagles, shifting to a 3-4, will take a page from their in-state neighbors from Pittsburgh.
When new coordinator Billy Davis met with his players, he scrapped last year's Eagles film in favor of Steelers tape: "If you want to teach a technique, the best way is to show somebody doing it correctly," Davis said. "Well, we don't have any padded film of that, so we use other teams in the league that play similar techniques. And I've got a heavy background with the Steelers and a couple coaches, so we just chose to use some of those."
Trent Richardson's progress is encouraging, but Cleveland's chances in the AFC North boil down to Brandon Weeden. Vic Carucci of ClevelandBrowns.com noted that "after being off the mark on some early throws" Thursday, "Weeden began looking fairly sharp and consistently connected with his receivers." Carucci noted that Norv Turner's scheme airmails a "wide variety of targets" downfield, most of them deep. Unlike last year, "very little dink-and-dunk stuff."