We’re Black and Blue All Over:
MANKATO, Minn. -- NFL teams are expected to take things up a notch Thursday upon formal ratification of the collective bargaining agreement (CBA). The latest hope is that the process will be complete by mid-day, which would allow a host of players who have recently signed contracts to begin practicing by Thursday afternoon.
I think that’s why the Minnesota Vikings flipped their practice schedule Thursday and will now have their full-pads session at 4 p.m. ET instead of 10 a.m. ET. The Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears are scheduled to practice at 8 p.m. ET and the Detroit Lions will take the field at 4:15 p.m. ET. If everything goes as expected, all four teams will have close to full-roster workouts for the first time since the 2010 season.
We’ll keep you updated.
Continuing around the NFC North:
Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press-Gazette on Packers cornerback Charles Woodson’s recovery from a broken collarbone: "The early signs after three days of practice, including one in pads, are that Woodson at age 34 looks fine after the broken collarbone late in the first half of the Super Bowl knocked him from the game. He appears to be practicing full time and not having his snaps limited by anything other than being in his 30s, similar to the past couple of years."
Packers receiver James Jones spent the offseason working on over-the-shoulder catches because they comprised the majority of his drops last season, writes Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com.
The Packers aggressively addressed their special teams this offseason, writes Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Vikings owner Zygi Wilf signed off on the release of left tackle Bryant McKinnie, notes Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com.
The Vikings are remaking their receiving corps, writes Jeremy Fowler of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
It’s time for Vikings safety Tyrell Johnson to prove he is a starter, writes Patrick Reusse of the Star Tribune.
Newly re-signed Lions cornerback Chris Houston, via Chris McCosky of the Detroit News: "There's no bitterness about anything. It all worked out to the best of its ability and I am ready to get back to business."
Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press on the injured foot of defensive tackle Nick Fairley: "Good thing they didn't draft for need."
The Lions have re-signed linebacker Bobby Carpenter, notes Philip Zaroo of Mlive.com.
Bears safety Major Wright thinks he can get "a lot of picks" this season, notes Justin Albers of the Chicago Sun-Times.
The Bears have big plans for defensive tackle Henry Melton, writes Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune.