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Wallcrawler
04-26-2005, 01:32 AM
http://www.kcchiefs.com/news/2005/04/25/draft_where_are_we_now/



DRAFT: WHERE ARE WE NOW?


Apr 25, 2005, 8:52:12 AM


Carl Peterson/Dick Vermeil
Post-Draft - 2005


Real Video - 300k | 100k | Audio

Q: What do you still have to do personnel-wise?

DICK VERMEIL: “Carl (Peterson) can tell you better about this. I can tell you that you never stop working on personnel. There’s going to be a June 1st date come around and every once in a while you’re going to be able to pick up a quality athlete at that time. But from a coach’s standpoint right now it’s college free agents. Sign a few college free agents that we liked that didn’t get drafted and that we didn’t draft, that kind of player – a player like a Benny Sapp last year. Provide them an opportunity to work out at our rookie camp this week and sign a few prior to that.”

Q: Carl, do you have some thoughts on that?

PETERSON: “Specific to the salary cap, very frankly, we’re just about where we want to be at this particular time of the year. The signing of (Patrick) Surtain and the other unrestricted free agents that we’ve done in (Carlos) Bell and (Sammy) Knight and picking up Carlos Hall and then putting in these draft choices and those that we think we’ll make our team, we have a pretty good understanding of where the cap numbers will come in.

“The next date that we would probably look at would be June 1st to see what changes might be made. There will probably be some this week. Teams will look at their rosters and what they were able to draft and if they were able to address their needs. But I don’t think they will move many veteran players until after the first of June to save the cap dollars.”

Q: So, other than the college free agents that you were talking about, there’s a good chance that this is the way you will go to River Falls and start training camp?

PETERSON: “I wouldn’t exclude June 1st. Things happen in this league that you never expect. But I think we are all pretty comfortable with the tentative roster right now. It’s Dick’s charge to get them lined up in the positions they think they should be.”

Q: Do you see yourself having to make any June 1 moves?

PETERSON: “Possibly. Yeah. There’s the three dates: the first day of free agency where you have to be under the cap, June 1st that has to do with veterans whose contracts are pretty large that you’re going to say good-bye to and be able to spread those cap dollars out because you need those dollars to sign these players you’ve just acquired in the draft and have it done before the beginning of training camp. The last date is the most important because it has to do with the 53-man roster the Saturday before you kick it off. We’ll keep massaging the numbers.”

Q: As it stands now could this be your most significant off-season as far as player procurement?

PETERSON: “Sure, anything’s possible. A couple of years ago we signed three guys in the off-season that came in and started for us. We went 13-3 and felt pretty good about that. We didn’t feel real good about the lack of improvement of our defense.

“I think obviously that we’ve made a sincere effort to address some needs and we’re pleased with what we’ve been able to do. Again, it still is a puzzle to get it to fit all under the cap when you get ready to kick it off. You still have to have something for injured reserve; you certainly want to have a full eight-man developmental squad and your 53 players under the cap.”

Q: You’ve received a lot of praise personally the last couple of days following the draft including the acquisition of Patrick Surtain. How gratifying is that? Has this been personally gratifying the last couple of days?

PETERSON: “I’m pleased for the player personnel department and for our coaching staff who put so much time and effort into this. The other people like (assistant GM) Denny Thum who work hard on getting the numbers and the contracts put together for free agents.

“It still gets down to this: what do we do when we kick it off in September and where we are in December. Hopefully, it turns out to be a very successful, positive improvement for the Chiefs and then I’ll say that’s terrific. It’s just the beginning and certainly not the end.”

Q: Do you feel good about the people you’re going to war with next year? At the end of the season last year you talked about the challenges you faced not only on defense but your effort to get some young athletes on offense. Do you feel good about where you are?

VERMEIL: “We’ve invested a lot of time trying to feel good about it. As I go through this draft I always say, ‘I wish we would have done this or this’ because we thought we’d get this guy in the next round and, all of a sudden, someone takes him. That happens in every draft.

“But overall, I’m pleased. I’m pleased with the caliber of people we’re going to go to training camp with. I think it’s the most talented group of people we’ve had to go to camp with.

“I have my concerns like I always do this time of year. As we go along, hopefully, we can relieve some of those concerns by doing a good job of coaching specific players and specific players maturing and becoming better through the maturation and understanding of what they have to do to maintain security in the National Football League.”

Q: You talked of June 1st as an important date where other teams cut their players for salary cap reasons. Are you still looking for defense or looking for offense? Can you be specific in what you’re looking for?

PETERSON: “No, but I can be very general. We’re looking for good football players. I don’t know if every single position is where we would like it right now. If someone shows up on the waiver wire or becomes a free agent or a trade is a possibility, we’re going to certainly look at it.

“Again, right now, the first look is very encouraging, but personally, I’m looking forward to this weekend to see how these young guys look. Then, see them in the OTA’s (on the field activities) and see how they fit in with our veteran guys. Then we’ve got a mini-camp and there’s going to be a lot of coaching that’s going to be going on between now and when we break for vacation at the end of June before training camp.

“At least we know right now a vast majority of the people we’re going to go to camp with.”

Q: Do you have enough depth at linebacker given the injuries you have?

VERMEIL: “I’m looking down the road expecting them all to be healthy. That’s how you have to plan because they’re all on our payroll. They mean a lot to us and some have already played well for us.

“I think Mike Maslowski is the furthest away because he’s been out of the game for a whole year. Scott Fujita hardly missed a practice. I think he missed one practice all year. Shawn Barber missed the last eight games. So, Maz has the biggest jump to make. Plus, he’s coming off an injury and an operation that hasn’t been done in the National Football League. If someone can come back it’s Mike Maslowski.”

Q: You said that Barber might open the season on PUP (physically unable to play). Is there any improvement in his condition to indicate that might be speeded up?

VERMEIL: “I think he’s ahead of schedule, but I think it’s better to think that way than to plan on it and, therefore, not properly prepare somebody else to be ready to go at that position. We just don’t assume that’s going to happen.”

PETERSON: “I’m not going to argue with my head coach, but I would say that he very probably is going to begin training camp on PUP. That doesn’t mean he’s going to conclude training camp on PUP. Hopefully, he continues to make the progress he’s doing now and that would be a real plus. I wouldn’t count any of those guys out because knowing them and their determination and desire to be 100% and be ready for training camp is what they’re looking for.”

Q: Might he be 100% for opening day though?

PETERSON: “Absolutely. I’m not a doctor, but based on what he’s done so far and the surgery that he’s had he’s making terrific progress. I think the key for all of them is we’d like to have them 100% during and at the end of training camp if possible. I think we’ll have a better sense of that in June.

“If you recall, we went through this before with a running back a couple of years ago. (Priest Holmes) There were stories that there was no way he could be ready for training camp, or that his career was over. But at the end of training camp he was ready to play and he scored 27 rushing touchdowns and set an NFL record. So, you can’t count these guys out. They’re athletes, determined guys that have great work ethics.”

VERMEIL: “The other thing is they don’t want someone else to play their position. Someone steps in it’s a concern for them. It’s no fault of their own, they’re injured, but it creates a little more anxiety.”

Q: On sports talk radio, people were calling in and saying that coach isn’t putting a lot of pressure on (first round pick) Derrick Johnson in saying he may not start. He knows he’s going to start; he’s just saying that so that we won’t put all this undue pressure on him. How big a jump is it even for a Butkus Award winner to go from where he is there to what you’re going to need him to do here?

VERMEIL: “That’s the same question that’s asked everybody every year. It’s the same jump last year and the year before that and the year before that. Everybody has a big jump to go from starting in college to starting a league opener in the NFL. Some guys are more ready for it, some teams have such a demanding need for it even if the guys not ready he starts. They play and suffer the consequences and see him make his rookie mistakes and see him make his rookie big plays. But I can’t tell you how long it will take to get Derrick Johnson ready to play.

“First off, we have a young player playing there in Scott Fujita if we put him on the left side. He’s played a lot of good football for us and won a couple of game balls.”

Q: Was the drafting of quarterback James Kilian a function of getting a young guy to play that position some day?

VERMEIL: “It was a function of getting a young quarterback to go to training camp just in case we got a quarterback hurt there. We’d have another quarterback prepared that we evaluated as having some talent that could play a backup role early. Therefore, we would go into a season with three quarterbacks and the third quarterback we have now is a very experienced quarterback that can start for us and play in a ballgame and help us win a football game. If someone was injured the third quarterback then would be this young guy who would at least be introduced to the offense. Maybe a year on the practice squad or two you could project he is a legitimate competitive starter.”

Q: What did you like about him as opposed to other quarterbacks who were available at that spot?

VERMEIL: “Well, he was available to us at that spot. We liked him after (quarterbacks coach) Terry Shea worked him out and came back with a good report on him. We liked him on game tape and he’s accurate. He’s got a lot of poise; he’s smart. He needs a little better opportunity. He has a lot of natural poise.”

Q: Last week you made some comments, Carl, that seemed to indicate that the only fans that you care about are the ones that buy the tickets. Is that what you meant?

PETERSON: “I think that’s a gross misinterpretation of what I really did say. I said yesterday to our fans at a draft rally that I love all of Kansas City Chiefs fans — all of them. I certainly have a responsibility to those Kansas City Chiefs fans who are season ticket holders and that’s my first responsibility as the president of this organization. But we enjoy all of our fans and we have season ticket holders in 47 states and Washington, DC and Puerto Rico and we love all of them too. All of those who aren’t here but like to be and are Chiefs fans we certainly enjoy and want all of them to continue to be great Chiefs fans.

“I think what I said was misinterpreted but sometimes there is a lack of communication with myself and the media. I would hope that would answer any questions.”


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Pretty good piece of info on Barber in there, as well as some more BSing on the part of Vermiel in regard to Derrick Johnson.

Its also good to see that if there are some players available after June 1st, going after some new talent hasnt been ruled out, even after the big acquisitions we've made so far.

DaWolf
04-26-2005, 05:20 AM
Q: So, other than the college free agents that you were talking about, there’s a good chance that this is the way you will go to River Falls and start training camp?

PETERSON: “I wouldn’t exclude June 1st. Things happen in this league that you never expect. But I think we are all pretty comfortable with the tentative roster right now. It’s Dick’s charge to get them lined up in the positions they think they should be.”

Q: Do you see yourself having to make any June 1 moves?

PETERSON: “Possibly. Yeah. There’s the three dates: the first day of free agency where you have to be under the cap, June 1st that has to do with veterans whose contracts are pretty large that you’re going to say good-bye to and be able to spread those cap dollars out because you need those dollars to sign these players you’ve just acquired in the draft and have it done before the beginning of training camp. The last date is the most important because it has to do with the 53-man roster the Saturday before you kick it off. We’ll keep massaging the numbers.”

Q: You talked of June 1st as an important date where other teams cut their players for salary cap reasons. Are you still looking for defense or looking for offense? Can you be specific in what you’re looking for?

PETERSON: “No, but I can be very general. We’re looking for good football players. I don’t know if every single position is where we would like it right now. If someone shows up on the waiver wire or becomes a free agent or a trade is a possibility, we’re going to certainly look at it.


Yeah I'm gonna agree with you. Usually Peterson is pretty unequivical about his roster being set and not forseeing any more moves, and DV is vocal about how he doesn't like to add guys to a program midway through OTA's because he wants to give the guys that have been there from the start to get that opportunity. But none of that here. Seems like if they see a player cut that they like and can afford, they wouldn't hesitate to go after them once June 1 rolls around...