Former Giants quarterback Danny Kanell could be returning to pro football
in New York, this time with the Arena League's Dragons.
The Dragons released starting quarterback Danny Ragsdale yesterday, and a
team source said Kanell had a successful workout with the Dragons earlier in
playing professional baseball as a first baseman for the Newark Bears of the
independent Atlantic League. He was the starting quarterback for the Giants in
20 games from 1996-'98.
Another possibility for the Dragons could be the return of AFL Offensive
Player of the Year Aaron Garcia, who was signed by the NFL's 49ers during the
winter. Garcia hoped to attend training camp this summer and earn the No. 3
quarterback position, but the 49ers drafted quarterback Brandon Doman out of
BYU in the fifth round of this past weekend's NFL draft. That selection greatly
diminished the odds of Garcia making the team in the fall.
Ragsdale's career as a starting quarterback for the Dragons lasted only
three- quarters of a game. He completed 13 of 24 passes for 129 yards with a
touchdown and an interception and was pulled in favor of rookie Matt Nagy as
the Dragons lost, 43-25, to the Los Angeles Avengers on Friday.
The Dragons open their home schedule at noon Sunday at Nassau Coliseum, and
their starting quarterback could be any one of three or more players.
NFL experience doesn't always translate into AFL success. It often takes
time for a player to adjust to the tight dimensions and quickness of the
arcade-like Arena game.
If Kanell signs with the Dragons, he won't be the only NFL quarterback to
return to the metropolitan area with an AFL team. Former Jet Glenn Foley, who
this season. Foley did not see any playing time in an opening-week loss because
of a coach's decision.
The Dragons' coaches have some decisions to make as well.