Black and Blue all over: Millen and Detroit's woes

June, 18, 2009
6/18/09
7:21
AM ET
Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert

Based on early reactions, an offhand remark from former Detroit president/general manager Matt Millen isn't going to go over well in Detroit.

Here's what Millen told Don Banks of SportsIllustrated.com:

"There's nothing I can do about [Detroit]. All I can do is from here on out. I understand. In Detroit, they need a bad guy. I was a bad guy. I was to blame for the fall of the auto industry and the housing market. Somehow, I had something to do with [Detroit mayor] Kwame Kilpatrick [resigning], although I'm not sure what. But that's what happens when you lose in this game. You give everyone a cheap and easy story to jump on.''

Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press had this reaction:

[F]or Millen to portray himself as a victim is downright offensive to the people of Detroit, Lions fans everywhere and those who cover the team.

Yes, Detroiters probably don't need any more fuel for their fire.

Continuing around the NFC North:

  • Tom Kowalski of Mlive.com suggests Will Heller likely will serve as the Lions' No. 2 tight end behind rookie Brandon Pettigrew.
  • Brad Biggs of the Chicago Sun-Times reports that safety Craig Steltz maintained his spot with the Bears' starting defense throughout OTAs. Corey Graham has mostly been working at the nickel spot.
  • David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune on the state of the Bears: "[F]rom this vantage point the Bears team that walked off the field Wednesday after its final organized team activity possesses more overall talent and depth than any since [coach Lovie] Smith arrived in 2004.
  • Reporters pressed Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy about the status of safety Nick Collins, who reported this week for organized team activities but did not participate in much of Wednesday's workout. McCarthy said Collins was not injured, according to Greg A. Bedard of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, but when asked if Collins had taken a physical, McCarthy said: "I don't have all of that information for you right now."
  • Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers didn't have much to say about the possibility of retired quarterback Brett Favre playing for Minnesota this season, according to Tom Pelissero of the Green Bay Press-Gazette. Rodgers: "I'm not going to speculate on things that haven't happened yet. So, when that happens, then I'll give you a good answer."
  • One more nugget about Minnesota's panel discussion Wednesday night. As Sean Jensen of the St. Paul Pioneer Press points out, the Vikings acknowledged they are enmeshed in a contract dispute with cornerback Antoine Winfield. Vice president of player personnel Rick Spielman: "We're going to do everything we can to keep Antoine. He's an important part of our defense, important part of our team."

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