Bowe back with the Chiefs

Dwayne Bowe of the Kansas City Chiefs (AFP)

Dwayne Bowe of the Kansas City Chiefs (AFP)

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:11 PM ET

Dwayne Bowe is back and soon, the Kansas City Chiefs could be as well.

The potential game-breaker signed a $9.5-million U.S. tender after missing the team’s off-season program and training camp.

Bowe caught a franchise-record 15 touchdown passes in 2010, but slumped to five last season, even though his receptions and yardage stayed about the same.

With Matt Cassel healthy, Bowe has a chance to move up the team’s reception charts. He currently sits seventh all-time.

He was the last franchise player to sign, but will now have to pick up Kansas City’s new offence quickly.

When he does, the Chiefs should be dangerous. Cassel has looked as strong as ever, with no signs of rust. Though the Chiefs are loaded offensively, Bowe takes the team to another level.

Getting his favourite target back will only increase Cassel’s production.

Bowe will need to have a big season in order to get the long-term contract he seeks.

There are whispers that the team was unhappy he decided to hold out. Bowe also held out — though only for a week — prior to his standout rookie season.

All will be forgiven with a double-digit touchdown season.

There’s no question Bowe has the ability to add another one to his resume.

NFLPA FIRES BACK

The NFL Players Association has fired back at NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

Goodell submitted a sworn statement that he was ready to discipline players for their involvement in the New Orleans Saints “bounty gate” in March, but waited until May as a courtesy to the union.

The NFLPA filed documents in federal court on Friday disputing Goodell’s statement.

The four players suspended claim that Goodell’s suspensions should be annulled because his previous statements indicate he pre-judged their actions.

Linebacker Scott Fujita said Goodell told him he would go after Saints coaches, but “was not quite sure what he had on (the players).”

U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan has requested evidence from both sides.

The NFL says Goodell delayed his rulings only because the union asked him to wait while it conducted a probe of its own.

Saints brass were sanctioned on March 21st.

Jonathan Vilma was eventually suspended for the season and Will Smith was suspended for four games. Anthony Hargrove got eight games, Fujita three.

JENNINGS ON THE MEND

Green Bay is about to get a lift.

Wide receiver Greg Jennings is just about back from a concussion and could practice as soon as Sunday.

Jennings got hurt on Aug. 3 during a scrimmage, but head coach Mike McCarthy said Jennings is feeling better. His status for Thursday’s game against Cincinnati is unclear.

On the negative side for the Packers, linebacker Desmond Bishop had surgery on his torn hamstring and will be out for some time.

QUICK HITS

Cowboys star linebacker DeMarcus Ware will not play on Saturday against San Diego because of a left hamstring injury suffered in practice on Thursday ... Rams quarterback Chad Bradford said a report that he might need surgery after the season on an ankle was “news to me.” Bradford did say that the ankle was still tender though ... Reggie Bush says he wants to win the rushing title. You can stop laughing any time ... ... The Bengals say tight end Jermaine Gresham, who hurt his knee on Thursday, is fine. Meanwhile, former Bengals third-round pick Jordan Shipley has been released. The wide receiver has battled knee trouble ... Detroit has claimed offensive lineman Bill Nagy from waivers. He previously was with Dallas. Nagy might not be healthy enough to play all season ... Funny or stupid? According to the Washington Post, the Redskins are selling a T-shirt commemorating the “QB Showdown Rivalry” between Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck on Aug. 25. Of course, since it is a pre-season game, there’s a chance neither of the rookies will play huge minutes ... After playing just one possession last week, Peyton Manning will see action in the first quarter as well as a series in the second, according to the Broncos ... According to ESPN, any fan who gets ejected from an NFL stadium this season will have to take a four-hour online course before they will be allowed to enter the facility again.

HENRY WANTS ANOTHER CHANCE

Travis Henry has made a lot of mistakes, but believes he deserves another chance.

The former Buffalo, Tennessee and Denver running back, now 33, is hoping for a miracle.

Henry told the Pascoe Tribune that if Michael Vick and Plaxico Burress can come back to the NFL after serving time (Henry has been in jail for cocaine trafficking) he can as well.

“In my time away, people would know who I was and talk in a disappointed way like I threw away my career,” Henry said.

“It just haunts me when I think about it. I see guys like Vick and Burress and say: ‘Why can’t that be me?’”

Henry is considered old for a running back though and has at least as many negatives on his resume as those two did (the drug charges, the 11 children with 10 mothers).

The league has reinstated Henry and he is waiting to find a team.

He could be waiting a long time.

Hopefully not, he says.

”People make mistakes,” Henry said.

”It’s what you do after to get back up. I just want to show young kids that people make mistakes and you can get up and you can fight.”

GETTIN' BACK

The Steelers are still waiting on Mike Wallace, but at least got some good news on the offensive front on Friday.

Running back Rashard Mendenhall was activated from the physically unable to perform list, though a league source told ESPN that he will likely not be ready for Pittsburgh’s regular-season opener and might even have to sit all of September.

The team also activated nose tackle Casey Hampton from the PUP list.

Mendenhall, who rushed for 928 yards and nine touchdowns last season, tore his ACL on Jan. 1 and is still working his way back.

Fellow running back Isaac Redman has a hip injury and will not play against Indianapolis on Sunday.

Wallace is holding out because he wants a new long-term contract. His holdout is the longest in 22 years for a Pittsburgh player.

The receiver is expected to show up in the next two weeks though and once he is fit to contribute in the next month or so, the Steelers offence already featuring an in form Ben Roethlisberger could be poised to put some points on the board.

Moreso if Mendenhall can get all the way back, though the team believes anything it gets from him before American Thanksgiving will be a huge bonus.

OK WITH THE HIT, NOT THE FINE

Philadelphia cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said this week there was nothing wrong with his hit on Pittsburgh quarterback Byron Leftwich earlier this month.

The NFL disagreed, fining him $21,000 U.S. for a hit that was flagged for unnecessary roughness on a defenceless player.

Rodgers-Cromartie wasn’t pleased, though he was still able to laugh about being fined.

“Twenty-one thousand. I ain’t even got that,” he said on Friday.

Most believe he got off lightly though, since he left his feet and probably hit Leftwich late.

Rodgers-Cromartie conceded he was half in the wrong, but would not admit to seeing eye-to-eye with the NFL on the play overall.

“It’s not even a vicious hit. I mean, how could you think that? I mean, shoot, he got up right from it. I mean, I’ll say I left my feet. I can understand that. I can understand a fine coming.”

A free agent after the season, continuing the money talk, Rodgers-Cromartie said he will be more careful because he doesn’t want to lose any more cash.

DEMPS TO PATS?

Wooed by the New York Jets and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Olympic silver medallist Jeff Demps instead appears to be close to a deal with the New England Patriots.

Multiple reports had Demps inking the deal on Friday afternoon, but negotiations carried on into the evening.

The speedster met with his agents in Orlando earlier in the day in advance of a decision.

He was a member of USA’s 4X100 metre relay team. The squad finished behind only world record-setting Jamaica.

Demps played with Jets quarterback Tim Tebow at Florida, so many believed the team had the inside track on the running back and kick returner who was not drafted.

Demps had said he would pursue a career on the track before changing his mind after the Olympics.

New England is deep at running back, so it seems Demps will break into the NFL primarily as a return man.

He would add some special teams flare to a team that already projects to be tremendous offensively.

CRAZY CONFIDENCE

Players say some funny things at this time of the year.

The latest: Oakland defensive tackle Tommy Kelly, who claimed this week that the Raiders can have one of the top five defences in the NFL this season.

Kelly needed only one pre-season game to become convinced Oakland’s defence is already vastly improved from a year ago.

If you didn’t watch the Raiders last season, the defence was bad, really bad. How bad? How about 29th in overall defence. Even worse, only one other team allowed more touchdowns.

Nonetheless, Kelly is talking the talk, though he might have gotten a little carried away after the team only allowed three points against Dallas.

“(If) we cut down on the mental errors and the penalties, man, people are going to have a hard time dealing with us,” Kelly told Oregon Live.

Richard Seymour also optimistically said Oakland could be top 5 earlier this month.

It’s not realistic to base any expectations off of early pre-season action, but Kelly doesn’t care.

“It’s the first time in nine years we ever looked that good tackling in the first game of the preseason.

“So whatever (the new defensive staff) are doing must be working. We look a lot better.”

Oakland took on Arizona on Friday night in its latest defensive test.

 

 

 

 

 


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