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Training camp watch: Saturday's latest from around the NFL

TSN.ca Staff

7/26/2014 12:29:22 PM

With the majority of NFL training camps underway, the league is abuzz with position battles, injury news and rookies making an immediate impact.

Each day, TSN.ca provides the latest rumours, reports and speculation from around the NFL beat.

No QB Controversy?

Though the pair are battling it out against each other for the starter's role in New York, Jets quarterbacks Geno Smith and Michael Vick are getting along famously during camp.

Both West Virginia products, Smith recalls Vick reaching out to him just after his release from prison when Smith was beginning to show elite potential at the school.

"He called me on my cellphone," Smith told the New York Times. “He didn't want anything. He didn't want to recruit me for anything. He didn't want to ask me for anything. He just wanted to get to know me. He liked the way I played, and he said he wanted to give me some guidance."

Vick, signed by the Jets this past winter after five years with the Eagles that saw him lose the starting QB job to Nick Foles, hopes that he'll be able to set an example for Smith and make sure that the 23-year-old doesn't make many of the same poor choices that the first-overall pick in the 2001 NFL Draft did. Even though Vick admits there were those who warned him of similar dangers and he chose to ignore them, he believes it will be different with Smith.

“People told me that, but, you see, Geno's a different kid,” said Vick. “First and foremost, he has the fortitude to be the best. He understands that nothing is going to be given to you. You got to go out and earn everything in this league. He's got us supporting him, cheering him on. There is no better feeling than to have guys behind you who want you to succeed.”

As for still starting in the NFL after 11 seasons in the league, Vick is holding out hope.

“I still want to start in this league one day," the four-time Pro Bowler said. "I still want to play. I want to play as long as I can. I love football. But as of right now, I'm going to enjoy this moment right here with G[eno.] I want to see G try to go out there and achieve some things we know he can achieve."

Still Packing 'Em In?

Though he's a free agent and able to sign with any team he chooses, Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy still considers tight end Jermichael Finley a member of his team.

"Jermichael Finley is a Green Bay Packer in my opinion and obviously he's going through a medical situation," McCarthy told the Appleton Post-Crescent. "First and foremost, you just want him to get healthy."

Finley, 27, has been out of action since an October 20 game against the Cleveland Browns where he incurred a spinal contusion that required vertebrae surgery. He's only recently been given the go-ahead by doctors to resume football-related activities.

If Finley doesn't return, the Packers are looking at Richard Rodgers and Brandon Bostick for the role of starting TE. The team has also brought in the talented, but troubled Colt Lylerla, undrafted out of Oregon.

"I like our tight ends. I think that's a group that we're really got to get a lot of pad work," McCarthy said. "I mean, if there was ever, if you wanted to say, 'OK, what group progressed?' You went, 'OK, wow' (about tight ends) in spring."

The Packers have one spot on their 90-man roster and $13 million remaining in cap space.

The Welcome Matt Down in Oakland

Inequivocly, Matt Schaub is the starting quarterback for the Oakland Raiders.

Head coach Dennis Allen told ESPN that second-round pick Derek Carr isn't in consideration for the role.

"I'm really excited about Derek Carr," said Allen, who is heading into his third year as Raiders coach. "I think he's got a chance to be a top-level quarterback in this league. But he's young, and he's a rookie. That's a tough proposition in this league. I know we've seen some guys that have been able to have some success as rookie quarterbacks, but I've also seen some opportunities where guys have had a chance to sit in behind a veteran quarterback and watch and learn and go on to have successful careers."

Schaub is coming off of one of the ugliest years in his pro career. Last year with the Houston Texans, Schaub threw for 14 interceptions, including pick-sixes in four-straight games, and had a career-worst 73 QB rating.

Still, Allen is committed to Schaub.

"It's Matt," said Allen. "Matt's our quarterback."