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  1. #1
    RamWraith's Avatar
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    Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    By Jim Thomas
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    Saturday, Mar. 11 2006

    The Adam Archuleta "era" at strong safety has ended in St. Louis. While
    Archuleta was jetting to Washington for a free-agent visit with the Redskins,
    the Rams were signing Minnesota's Corey Chavous to a five-year contract early
    Saturday afternoon.

    Carolina linebacker Will Witherspoon won't be far behind. Rams coach Scott
    Linehan dropped Chavous off at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, and
    then picked up Witherspoon once his plane arrived. Talk about curb service.

    Chavous' deal is believed to be worth $16 million overall, including a $4
    million signing bonus.

    "Obviously, we feel it's a great fit for our team," Linehan said. "He's a
    proven player, a leader, and a student of the game."

    Witherspoon, who became the Rams' top target at linebacker once Derek Smith
    re-signed with San Francisco, isn't expected to leave St. Louis without a
    contract. And a big contract at that. Indications Saturday were that the Rams
    were offering Witherspoon a $13 million signing bonus, in a deal that averaged
    in excess of $5 million a year.

    In another development, one team official said the Rams had a lucrative
    contract on the table to retain defensive tackle Ryan Pickett.

    Chavous, 30, originally was a second-round draft pick by the Arizona Cardinals
    in 1998 out of Vanderbilt. After four seasons with the Cardinals, Chavous, 6-1,
    205, signed with Minnesota as a free agent in 2002. Although he entered the NFL
    as a cornerback, he spent most of his time in Minnesota playing strong safety.

    By safety standards, Chavous is good enough in coverage to play free safety.
    But the Rams plan to use him at strong safety, giving second-year man
    Oshiomogho Atogwe first crack at the starting free safety job.

    Linehan spent the 2002, '03, and '04 seasons as Minnesota's offensive
    coordinator, so he is very familiar with Chavous.

    "He started 64 games there during four years," Linehan said. "He's one of those
    guys that doesn't come off the field. He will do whatever it takes to prepare
    for a game. He's like an extension of the coach out on the field."

    A Pro Bowler in 2003, Chavous finished fourth on the Vikings in tackles a year
    ago with 90 stops, and had two interceptions, seven pass breakups and fumble
    recovery. So why Chavous over Archuleta?

    "We certainly had a lot of discussions with Adam," Linehan said. "We still
    valued him very highly. It was one of those things where (a deal) materialized
    very quickly with Chavous.

    "I felt like we had a plan for either/or. I wanted to obviously exhaust the
    Chavous possibility all along without necessarily shutting the door on Adam."

    Archuleta, the Rams' starting free safety the past five seasons, may be signed
    by the Redskins sometime on Sunday. Washington had a jet waiting for him in Los
    Angeles, where he was visiting his agent. After arriving in the nation's
    capital Saturday, Archuleta was expected to watch the Washington-Detroit NBA
    game as a guest of the Redskins.

    In general, Chavous is considered a surer tackler than Archuleta and better in
    coverage. But Archuleta is a better blitzer and probably stronger in the box on
    run support.

    Witherspoon, 25, is considered an emerging player who can do a little bit of
    everything. He led the Panthers in tackles last season (109), adding 2 1/2
    sacks, two interceptions and 13 pass breakups.

    Some observers tabbed him as one of the top free agents at any position this
    offseason. Others regard him as a good player, but not a difference maker. At
    6-1, 231 pounds, Witherspoon spent most of his time playing weakside linebacker
    - a position where the Rams already have Pisa Tinoisamoa. But Witherspoon did
    play some middle linebacker in Carolina when Dan Morgan was hurt.

    As for Pickett, several potential suitors went elsewhere for defensive tackles
    on Saturday, a wild first day of the free agency period: Arizona signed
    Kendrick Clancy (New York Giants); Buffalo signed Larry Tripplett
    (Indianapolis); and Carolina signed Maake Kemoeatu (Baltimore).


  2. #2
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Ultimately i think its good that Chavous can play both safety spots, however i dont think they will decide where he will play until after the draft. At the moment he is playing SS because we have no one else, but if we draft an SS, then i can see Chavous being moved. That said, i like the fact they are giving Atogwe a shot.

    Also, im pleased they have offered a decent contract to both Witherspoon and Pickett. I here reports of Pickett meeting other teams, but Witherspoons reported visit to Miami was not to meet with the Dolphins, but to attend a friends party. So it looks like Witherspoon could be ours soon.

  3. #3
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    I have mixed feelings about Chavous playing Strong Safety. I think he is slighty undersized to play that position. But he did a solid job at it in Minnesota. I'd rather see him at Free Safety. But if we paly him at Strong Safety and Atogwe Free Safety that might not be bad since Atogwe showed flashs of great potentional.
    RamsFan16

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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Looks like we will have both Witherspoon and Pickett. Some of the teams that were reportably interested in Pickett have already signed DT's.

    I think Chavous will end up playing FS, with either OJ or Carter playing SS.
    JUST WIN ONE FOR THE FANS


    "HIT HARD, HIT FAST, AND HIT OFTEN"
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  5. #5
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Wow, I can't wait for next season, that's all I'm sayin.


    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams

  6. #6
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    I think Chavous will end up playing FS, and Huff plays SS.

  7. #7
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Quote Originally Posted by Rambos
    I think Chavous will end up playing FS, and Huff plays SS.
    No way! I'm sorry but I don't see that happening. Huff isn't built or big enough to play Strong Safety. I'd rather see Chavous playing strong safety than Huff. But with The D I'd like seeing:

    DL Hargrove Pickett Glover Little
    LB Pisa Hodge/Scott Witherspoon
    CB Bartell FS J. Williams SS Chavous CB Butler
    RamsFan16

  8. #8
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    I like the fact, that Picketts options are dwindling.......I have a feeling he may resign....

    steve
    "The breakfast Club"

  9. #9
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFan16
    No way! I'm sorry but I don't see that happening. Huff isn't built or big enough to play Strong Safety.
    He's basically the same size as two of the best strong safeties in the league - Ed Reed and Troy Polamalu.
    ClanRam ModCast: Episode Four
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  10. #10
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick
    He's basically the same size as two of the best strong safeties in the league - Ed Reed and Troy Polamalu.
    I just don't see it working out! Its just me but I don't see Huff in Reed or Polamolu. Even though he is compared to them I just don't. Sorry!
    RamsFan16

  11. #11
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsFan16
    I just don't see it working out! Its just me but I don't see Huff in Reed or Polamolu. Even though he is compared to them I just don't. Sorry!
    Well, it's your opinion, but I think the comparison there is pretty clear. Neither Reed nor Polamalu fit the Roy Williams/Adam Archuleta mold of a LB playing safety. They're smaller in frame, but are better in coverage while still being able to support the run. Exactly what Huff is.

    On another note, I'd like to hear the details of the offer they made to Pickett.
    ClanRam ModCast: Episode Four
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  12. #12
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick
    Well, it's your opinion, but I think the comparison there is pretty clear. Neither Reed nor Polamalu fit the Roy Williams/Adam Archuleta mold of a LB playing safety. They're smaller in frame, but are better in coverage while still being able to support the run. Exactly what Huff is.

    On another note, I'd like to hear the details of the offer they made to Pickett.
    I'd very well like to see the offer sent to Pickett and Witherspoon.
    RamsFan16

  13. #13
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    bye bye Arch, thank you for all these year, I hope you find again the love for the game, that you lost last season.
    A new D era begins. Can't wait to september

  14. #14
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    I will have to buy a new shirt 31 is history

    If our offer is so great why is witherspoon going to NO tomorrow and Pickett going to green bay
    Last edited by ramstiles; -03-12-2006 at 02:48 PM.

  15. #15
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    Re: Witherspoon offered $13 mill bones, Pickett gets offer

    Originally Posted by RamsFan16
    No way! I'm sorry but I don't see that happening. Huff isn't built or big enough to play Strong Safety.
    Take a look at the Rose Bowl game again then tell me Huff is too small.

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