Black and Blue all over: Jennings negotiations

Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Oh yeah. It feels like summer here in Green Bay, with high humidity and temperatures expected to approach 90 degrees. So what else would you want to do other than watch some football practice?

That's what I'll be doing twice Tuesday over at Lambeau Field, where the Packers' minicamp continues with two scheduled practices. We brought you up to date Monday on safety Nick Collins and defensive end Aaron Kampman, and Tuesday morning Lori Nickel of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has this report: Receiver Greg Jennings said he and the Packers are close to an agreement on a contract extension.

Here is the key quote from Jennings, which he couched with an appropriately vague timetable:

"We've been working on some things. We're coming pretty close, as far as my understanding is, to some type of deal. But when I say close, we could still be far ... if that makes sense. But I think we're coming close. You just never know how long 'close' can take to actually closing the deal."

That jibes with everything that has been evident from afar this offseason: The Packers are making steady progress toward locking up their top business priority of the offseason. Jennings' contract expires in the spring of 2010, and the Packers want no part of having to compete for him on free agency or even applying their franchise tag on him.

Continuing around the NFC North:

  • Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press-Gazette looks at the Packers' defensive line duo of Ryan Pickett and B.J. Raji. I'll have more on Raji later this week.

  • Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler said he spoke to Denver receiver Brandon Marshall about Marshall's desire to be traded from Denver, according to Marty O'Brien of the Newport News (Va.) Daily Press. Cutler, visiting a summer camp at William & Mary, said: "Just checking in on him and seeing how he's doing, because I went through a similar thing that he's going through."

  • Teams with new coaches are allowed to hold an additional minicamp, so Detroit will open minicamp No. 2 Tuesday under coach Jim Schwartz. This camp will be about job competition, according to Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press.

  • Terry Foster of the Detroit News profiles new Lions linebacker Larry Foote, a Detroit native. "Foote returns home with a dual mission. He wants to help his hometown team become good again and he wants to improve his hometown by reshaping the minds of young people who too often fall victim to the streets."

  • Sean Jensen of the St. Paul Pioneer Press profiles former Minnesota defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell, who is the new head coach of the UFL's New York franchise.