The Morning Fix

In between his unhappy arrival and his invisible departure, Mike Vrabel played an important role in the two-year development of the Chiefs rise from last place to first place. Considered by those outside the organization as a throw away item in the trade that brought QB Matt Cassel to Kansas City, he became as important as the starting quarterback.

“It’s been good to have Mike around teaching us how to transition to outside linebacker for two years,” Studebaker said. “That’s what Mike did for us. Besides playing great on Sundays, in the film room throughout the week he was helping us get better and ultimately the team got better.”

Commissioner Roger Goodell and several owners will negotiate with NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith and members of the players’ executive board later this week. Extensive negotiations last Thursday and Friday seemed promising, but the parties were unable to close the gap on the rookie wage scale – a subject that wasn’t nearly as contentious in earlier sessions.

At issue is how many first-round picks would fall under the wage scale, and the length of contracts teams could offer those rookies. The savings on salaries were supposed to go to veteran players and toward retirees’ benefits.

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