Siblings possibly involved in Taylor’s shooting

WINK News in Fort Myers, Florida is reporting that four suspects have been detained in connection with the shooting and death of NFL star Sean Taylor. WINK is also reporting that Taylor’s brother and sister might have possibly been in connection with the shooting suspects.

The above link will take you to WINK’s story. On the left hand side of the web page, there’s a news video that goes into more detail about how Taylor’s brother and sister might have been involved. The reporter from the video wasn’t entirely clear, but the jist of the story is that Taylor gave “thousands upon thousands” of money to his siblings and they in turn shared some of it with the suspects. Knowing that Taylor was the source of the money, the suspects went over to Taylor’s Miami house looking for more, then shot and killed him in the process.

None of this has been proven yet, however, so it’s safe to assume that this might not be the entire story. None of the national media outlets have even mentioned Taylor’s siblings yet.

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Seven players to watch down the stretch

Sure, Kurt Warner and Jamal Lewis haven’t set the world on fire this year, but in my latest column, I urge fantasy owners to look a little closer. With a cupcake schedule ahead of them, Warner and Lewis are just two players who should exceed their current rate of production down the stretch.

Heisman Trophy Studs & Duds

Heisman Trophy definition: A yearly award given to the most outstanding college football player.

What it stands for: Kid, you better be good at something else, because that trophy now walks hand in hand with your doomed professional football career.

The Heisman Trophy is supposed to be the crowning achievement for a college football player. Instead, it has more recently become known as somewhat of a jinx, turning star college players into bona fide NFL busts. But does the coveted hardware really spell doom and gloom for all of its winners? Well no, not all of them. In fact, there have been plenty of college football players who won the Heisman and went on to do very good things in the NFL. listed every Heisman winner since 1984 and put them into one of two groups: studs and duds. The studs obviously took their Heisman Trophy and hit the ground running, having more than above average success in the NFL, while the duds fizzled out right after hearing the words, “And your Heisman Trophy winner is….”

Possible suitors for Anderson

GM Phil Savage recently said the Browns might give the highest tender to QB Derek Anderson when he becomes a restricted free agent at the end of the season. That means if any team signs Anderson and the Browns don’t match, Cleveland would receive that team’s first and third round draft picks in 2008 (assuming some other form of compensation isn’t worked out).

Alright, I’m intrigued. What quarterback-starved teams are most likely to make a play at Anderson assuming the Browns don’t just hold on to him? “Most likely” rules out teams like the Jets, Bills, Chiefs, Dolphins and Panthers by the way, although they certainly might be in the QB-market as well.

1. Chicago. If the Bears go 7-9 or 8-8 and land in the middle of the first round, it’s highly feasible they would give up the necessary draft picks to land Anderson. Rex Grossman becomes a free agent at the end of the year and Brian Griese isn’t a long-term answer, so Chicago might be the most logical fit.

2. Minnesota. First and foremost, in order for the Vikings to make a play for Anderson, Brad Childress would have to admit the huge project that is Tarvaris Jackson might not be worth it. Childress fought hard this off-season to retain the three highly ineffective quarterbacks he currently has the roster, so it might be a stretch to assume he’ll go along with the idea of acquiring Anderson. However, with two great lines on both sides of the ball and a superstar young running back, Anderson would probably make Minnesota an instant contender, assuming they got him some wide receivers, of course.

3. Atlanta. The Falcons are in desperate need of a young franchise quarterback after you know who, did you know what. Yet, assuming they would be drafting in the top 10 next year, would they be willing to give up two high draft picks to acquire Anderson? Not only that, but would Anderson be worth passing on QB prospect Brian Brohm in the draft, the same Brian Brohm Bobby Petrino coached at Louisville?

I’ll rule out the Ravens, because while they would definitely be in the market for a young quarterback, Savage isn’t stupid enough to trade within the division. Two sleeper candidates, however, would be Detroit and Tampa. Both teams currently have aging quarterbacks in Jon Kitna and Jeff Garcia, respectively, and both would likely be drafting in the back half of each round, so a first and a third might be worth giving up.

Browns might tender Anderson

Wondering what the Browns might do with quarterback Derek Anderson – who will become a restricted free agent – after the season? The Cleveland Plain Dealer gave insight to the situation in a recent article.

For the first time publicly, Savage said he is leaning toward giving restricted free agent Anderson the highest contract tender after the season. The tender of $2.562 million would guarantee the Browns first- and third-round draft choices if a QB-hungry team offered Anderson a long-term contract to be its starter.

“I think we’d be most comfortable with that 1-and-3 scenario rather than doing something less than that,” Savage said. “Then you have to have a suitor. You’ve got to have somebody out there that’s wanting not only to give up picks but to pay a lot of money. And sometimes that can be a double-dip.”

The Browns are in a great position because if they retain Anderson for 2008, Brady Quinn could get another year of tutoring and possibly become the starter in 2009 when Anderson bolts for free agency. Or, if another team does make a play for Anderson in the off-season, the Browns (who don’t have a first round pick in 2008) would at least net multiple draft picks and still have Quinn ready to go next season.

For a deeper look at the Browns’ quarterback situation, click here to check out my recent column for

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