Bengals re-sign tight end Kelly
Sports betting junkies are looking for every edge they can find, but sometimes, there are transactions which just don't figure to make much of a ripple. One such NFL transaction occurred last week, when the Cincinnati Bengals re-signed tight end Reggie Kelly. The move is a curious one when one realizes that the Bengals picked Oklahoma tight end Jermaine Gresham with their first-round selection in the 2010 NFL Draft. Perhaps team management is thinking that the re-signing of Kelly will push Gresham just a little more in offseason preparations for the 2010 campaign. Perhaps Kelly will be able to find a role as a blocking back in short-yardage situations with a heavy-jumbo formation. At any rate, don't think this move will have overarching significance for Cincinnati.
Seahawks claim receiver Heckendorf on waivers
Continuing this theme of transactions that won't mean all that much to a lot of folks, the Seattle Seahawks gained a new receiver last week. The team claimed wide receiver Kole Heckendorf off waivers from the Detroit Lions. It's hard to be a Detroit pass catcher to begin with, but Heckendorf didn't make all that much of an impression. Clearly, his (now) former team would have kept him in the fold if he had been able to produce more in the Motor City. Seattle coach Pete Carroll does need receivers, and so it makes sense to create a more competitive atmosphere in camp, but it's hard to see how Heckendorf will create a big splash in the Pacific Northwest this season.
Raiders sign guard Loper
NFL betting enthusiasts probably didn't react with any strong emotions when they noticed this on the NFL ticker, but it did happen: On Friday, May 14, the Oakland Raiders signed guard Daniel Loper. The former Tennessee Titan, who briefly played for the Detroit Lions last season, is being brought to the West Coast to help protect new quarterback Jason Campbell. The Raiders made this move to beef up what they see as a thin offensive line corps. The move makes sense conceptually, but it's also logical for the simple reason that it should make Campbell happier. Sometimes, moves are significant not so much for their X-and-O dimensions, but because they send a strong symbolic message to an important player on the team. This signing of Loper fits into that latter category. Oakland is trying to tell Jason Campbell that the franchise cares about its signal caller's happiness.