<
>

Black and Blue all over: Game day

Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert
DETROIT -- Looks like we've got a bone-chilling day in the Upper Midwest, which is bad news for Jacksonville and Houston, but not so much for anyone planning to watch football inside Ford Field. (Hint, hint.)

We'll be at Ford Field in a few hours for the big Minnesota-Detroit matchup. It's 15 degrees here but should be somewhere in the upper 60s inside the stadium. We'll bring you coverage of the game throughout the day but will also keep an eye on the goings-on with Green Bay-Houston and Chicago-Jacksonville.

According to weather.com, it was minus-4 -- that's four below zero for you southerners -- in Green Bay as of 8 a.m. ET. The wind chill makes it feel like it's minus-19. In Chicago, it's 9 degrees with a wind-chill of minus-2. Good luck with all that.

I'll check back with you in a few hours. For now, let's see what's happening around the NFC North:

  • Chicago tight end Desmond Clark showed up at the Bears' facility Saturday with a tight hamstring, reports Brad Biggs of the Chicago Sun-Times. Clark was added to the injury report and listed as questionable. Clark's streak of 63 consecutive games played is the NFL's longest current streak for tight ends.

  • David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune wonders how the Bears will re-tool in the offseason with so many veterans signed to long-term contracts.

  • Judd Zulgad of the Star Tribune examines the delicate situation members of the Vikings organization found themselves in last week with the Williams Wall drama. Did the team support the legal maneuverings?

  • Minnesota defensive end Jared Allen has been everything the Vikings hoped he would be, writes Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune. (The St. Paul Pioneer Press also profiled Allen but I couldn't access the story). UPDATE: You can find the Pioneer Press story here.

  • More than 50 percent of those responding to a Detroit Free Press online poll want the Lions to finish 0-16. Even worse: Almost 19 percent don't care.

  • I totally agree with the first point in these three keys to the Vikings-Lions game, as presented by David Birkett of the Oakland Press: Tackling.

  • Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel digs deep into the reasons for the collapse of Green Bay's run defense. One prominent reasons: Personnel decisions that left the Packers too thin at defensive tackle.

  • Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press-Gazette doesn't think that Houston quarterback Matt Schaub, who has missed four games because of a knee injury, will have an easy time with the conditions at Lambeau Field.