NFC Notes: Cardinals, 49ers, Rams, Seahawks

     

Cardinals

Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins told reporters on Monday that he couldn’t wait to play with QB Kyler Murray and catch passes from him.

“Kyler has an arm,” Hopkins said, via Mason Kern of SI. “Obviously, I’m thankful to play with a quarterback like that who can make any throw, anywhere on the field, and has the confidence to do it. I think just from what I’ve seen, we’re going to have a good time playing football together because obviously he’s confident in his arm. The guy is very talented, very smart, high football IQ. What I’ve seen so far is someone with a very strong arm.”

However, Hopkins still respects the fact that this is only his first year in the Cardinals’ offense, while Murray is now entering his second season with the team.

“Kyler’s going into his second year, obviously,” Hopkins added. “He’s advanced in this offense. Other guys also. Last year was the first year of a lot of people being in this offense. You can tell just from the first day that — I wasn’t here, but just hearing from guys — we’re far (more) advanced than where we were at this point last year. He’s matured in this offense. I’m new to it, but he’s doing a good job of keeping me up to par with things and also the other guys around me. But I think we will have time to develop chemistry once we get out there and throw a little bit more against the defense. I think that will help. Obviously, we don’t have a lot of time to get ready, so every rep really counts. But Kyler’s mindset is, ‘We’re going to make it work,’ so that’s my mindset as well.”

Hopkins also said that he is pushing to learn the Cardinals’ playbook and expects that he and Murray will become best friends in order to improve their on-field chemistry and hopes to showcase his skills in HC Kliff Kingsbury‘s offense.

“We don’t have a lot of time together but we are making the best of it right now,” Hopkins said, via Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com. “My expectation is us becoming best friends. I have to be on the same page as my quarterback no matter what for us to be successful as a team. You can actually showcase your skillset in an offense like this. The conversation with Kliff and I is winning, and doing what we have to do to win.”

49ers

Now that the 49ers’ have signed TE Jordan Reed, the concern is naturally focused on his health, as he has suffered from at least seven documented concussions so far in his NFL career. GM John Lynch and HC Kyle Shanahan both mentioned the situation on Monday.

“There’s some risk-reward,” Lynch said, via 95.7 The Game. “We got to a point where we felt the risk we’re taking on was worth it with the potential reward.”

Shanahan added that “it’s going to be a hell of a deal for the Niners.” if Reed is able to remain healthy and in the lineup for 2020.

“I know he’s hungry to come in and play football,” said Shanahan. “He hasn’t gotten to do much of that lately. And when you have a talented guy who’s hungry to play football, it works out if they can stay healthy. And Jordan’s had some bad luck over the years. I know he’s ready to go. I hope he has some good luck here. And if he does, I think it’s going to be a hell of a deal for the Niners and really a good deal for him also.”

  • Eric Branch writes his initial thought on the 49ers’ signing of Reed was that he has suffered an alarming amount of concussions during his NFL career.

Rams

As part of the movement to shake up the coaching staff, the Rams hired former Washington OC Kevin O’Connell to the same position in Los Angeles. While Rams QB Jared Goff says O’Connell’s presence has been felt, he added the core of the offense will still remain the same with HC Sean McVay remaining in charge of playcalling. 

“Yes and no. I mean we have our wrinkles just like we do every year,” Goff said via a team transcript. “The core values remain the same. Sean (McVay) is still calling the plays. It’s still all his offense. So, there will be some new things definitely, but the core of it will remain the same.”

  • Rams CB Jalen Ramsey said he has left contract negotiations completely up to the team and his agent and is in the dark about it until his agent lets him know about a deal. (Jourdan Rodrigue)

Seahawks

  • Seahawks HC Pete Carroll said that DB Marquise Blair will be used at nickel back, and implied that he could be used in special pressure packages as well. (Bob Condotta)
  • Carroll mentions that WR Josh Gordon‘s situation is “not in our hands, but we are very open to that thought (of re-signing him). I don’t know what’s going to happen.” (Condotta)
  • The Seahawks are “very open” to the idea of bringing back Gordon but Caroll noted that it’s out of the team’s hands with Gordon still waiting to be reinstated by the NFL. Carroll also praised Gordon for the job he did last year and how he “fit in really well.” (Brady Henderson)
  • According to Carroll, TE Will Dissly “had an incredible offseason” and notes that despite the fact that he passed his physical this weekend, they’ll still “be careful with him” to ensure there are no setbacks. (Condotta)
  • Carroll spoke about WR Antonio Brown, saying: “It’s a very complex situation and we just need to see how it fits somewhere down the road. That’s all I got for you.”  Carroll also added that GM John Schneider “is all over it” in regard to knowing the situation Brown is in. (Curtis Crabtree)
  • First-round pick LB Jordyn Brooks can play all three linebacker spots, according to Carroll, but his best chance to start is on the weak side. Carroll also notes that the team has experimented with playing four linebackers at once, including Bruce Irvin, Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright and Brooks. (Michael-Shawn Dugar)
  • Dugar wonders if the Seahawks will attempt to bring back C Joey Hunt on a less expensive deal now that they have two open roster spots.
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