Let’s round up some news from around the league on our last Sunday before full training camp practices begin:
- Current Vikings guard Alex Boone spent the first seven seasons of his professional career with the 49ers before signing with Minnesota this offseason, and he tells Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk that Blaine Gabbert will beat out Colin Kaepernick for San Francisco’s starting quarterback job. Boone said, “To be honest I think that Blaine did a great job last year, and from what I know of Blaine, I think he’s probably gonna take the reins. I mean I think he’s a good guy, he knows what he’s doing out there, and he just has the support of the group so I think that’s one of the things to look forward to.” Boone’s comments, of course, are in keeping with recent reports from the Bay Area.
- Longtime Packers fullback and current free agent John Kuhn told Pat Kirwan and Jim Miller on SiriusXM NFL Radio several days ago that he is still waiting for an NFL team (preferably the Packers) to give him a call. A full-length piece from SiriusXM staff provides more details of that conversation, in which Kuhn explains why he expects to continue playing in 2016. Kuhn believes the variety of sub-packages that defenses deploy in today’s game create a need for two-back sets, and he added, “If not this week, if not next week, sometime in August, somebody’s going to have a need for somebody who’s willing to come in, work hard, do some of the dirty work that not everybody does anymore.”
- The Ravens put six players on the PUP list Saturday, as Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com reports, including big names Terrell Suggs, Steve Smith, Sr., Elvis Dumervil, and Breshad Perriman. All of those players, of course, can return to practice when activated, but they would have to miss at least the first six weeks of the season if they remain on the PUP list when Week 1 rolls around. Conspicuously absent from that list is Joe Flacco, who can participate in the first full-team training camp practice on Thursday.
- Kyle Meinke of MLive.com says the Lions‘ hottest training camp battle could be at wide receiver, where a host of veterans and unproven youngsters will compete for playing time behind Marvin Jones and Golden Tate.
- Greg Auman of The Tampa Bay Times tweets that the Buccaneers have 12 receivers currently on the roster, 10 of whom are 25 or younger. Of that group, Auman expects five to make the 53-man roster (or six if the group includes the return specialist). In a separate tweet, Auman indicates that the Bucs will also carry four tight ends.