We're Black and Blue All Over:
Good morning from NFC North blog headquarters, where we are positioned to sort through the reams of information, rumors and smokescreens picked up over the past four days at the NFL scouting combine. First up: The possibility of the Green Bay Packers using their franchise tag on receiver Greg Jennings, as first discussed by Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.
The move would cost about $10.3 million and would most likely be for the purpose of trading Jennings for compensation greater than what he would generate in next year's compensatory draft program. The full $10.3 million would count against the Packers' 2013 cap, but the team would have the ability to rescind the tag, set Jennings free and eliminate that cap hit after testing the market.
If the Packers don't have an immediate use for that cap space, I suppose it wouldn't hurt to gauge Jennings' trade value. I'm assuming the Packers have decided against keeping him long term, considering the reported lack of negotiations on a new contract. But it's worth noting that, given the chance to do the same thing last year with quarterback Matt Flynn, the Packers declined.
Regardless, I wouldn't get your hopes up about Jennings' return in 2013. But it's possible that the terms of his departure could be different than what we've assumed. Continuing around the NFC North:
Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel analyzes Jennings' situation as well as that of tight end Jermichael Finley, who coach Mike McCarthy seems intent on keeping. It's possible Finley will be asked to take a pay cut to do so.
The Packers are still looking to replace safety Nick Collins, writes Weston Hodkiewicz of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
The top end of the Packers' front office has changed dramatically in the past 36 months, notes Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com.
Detroit Lions right tackle Gosder Cherilus, a pending free agent, recently traveled to Germany for treatment of his troublesome right knee. Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press has more.
Chris McCosky of the Detroit News looks at two defensive end prospects: Florida State's Bjoern Werner and BYU's Ziggy Ansah.
Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner, another possible target of the Lions, is scheduled to have a torn labrum repaired March 12, according to Anwar S. Richardson of Mlive.com.
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune looked for tight end fits at the combine for the Chicago Bears.
It would be smart for the Bears to draft an insurance quarterback, writes Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times.
Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o is not a good fit for the Bears, writes Michael C. Wright of ESPNChicago.com. Georgia's Alec Ogletree and LSU's Kevin Minter are both better options, according to Wright.
The Minnesota Vikings will have a chance to re-stock their defensive line in this draft, writes Ben Goessling of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
Any quarterback the Vikings add this offseason will be a backup to starter Christian Ponder, writes Dan Wiederer of the Star Tribune.
Vikings coach Leslie Frazier on receiver Percy Harvin, via Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com: "I made it clear that I want him here, and I'm hoping things will work out where he is here," Frazier at the NFL scouting combine during an interview to air Sunday morning on 1500 ESPN. We all know his value from a talent standpoint, and I hope it works out. I'd like for him to be wearing number 12 for the Minnesota Vikings than anywhere else."