We're Black and Blue All Over:
Why is the NFL considering a reorganization of its offseason schedule, as reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter? Naturally, to avoid the kind of quiet period that leaves players, teams and media members fighting over whether someone has broken fingers or simply injured ones.
That about sums up the silly fracas that erupted Monday after Detroit Lions receiver Calvin Johnson seemed to confirm that he played much of last season with broken fingers on his left hand. (He replied, "I had a couple injuries to them, yeah," according to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press.) The Lions' website initially reported his comments as confirmation but later updated its story to say: "While Johnson did admit to suffering finger injuries, he did not specifically state that he did suffer a break."
The basic point we made Monday should stand: Johnson set an NFL record for receiving yards in a season with significant injuries to one of the most important body parts on a wide receiver. Whether they were broken, mangled, bruised, cut or any injured in any other way, the revelation adds a layer to his historic season.
Why the fuss over the exact diagnosis? Time. Time. Too much time.
(That and perhaps concern about an injury report violation. Johnson was never listed with a broken finger last season, and this isn't the first time Johnson has seemed to describe an injury that the Lions never listed him with.)
Continuing around the NFC North:
Johnson said he is praying for his former teammate Titus Young. Anwar S. Richardson of Mlive.com has more.
Chicago Bears place-kicker Robbie Gould (calf) could be cleared to join organized team activities (OTAs) this week, according to Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com.
Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune speaks with former NFL offensive lineman LeCharles Bentley, who is training Bears lineman Gabe Carimi this offseason. Carimi is working with Bentley rather than attend OTAs.
The Bears terminated the contract of defensive lineman Andre Fluellen, notes Michael C. Wright of ESPNChicago.com.
Rookie Green Bay Packers receiver Kevin Dorsey has a plan for success, writes Lori Nickel of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
The Packers are looking for a viable return man to replace Randall Cobb, and Jeremy Ross is the first on the list, writes Weston Hodkiewicz of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
From the Associated Press, the Minnesota legislature is "temporarily rerouting money from a new cigarette tax and from a corporate tax to backfill a lagging stadium fund" for the Minnesota Vikings' new stadium.
Charity leaders are beginning a promotional tour for the original source of revenues, e-pulltabs, so they can be used in future years. More from Jean Hopfensperger of the Star Tribune.