Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NFC North [Print without images]

Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Bears keeping WR options open

By Kevin Seifert
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN's George Smith

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Just how interested are the Chicago Bears in acquiring wide receivers Plaxico Burress and Brandon Marshall? After practice at Halas Hall Wednesday, Bears head coach Lovie Smith was playing it cool.

"We keep all of our option open," Smith said. "The door is never closed on any player available."

Smith said Burress, whose status is uncertain because of criminal charges stemming from his self-inflicted, accidental gun shot wound to his leg last year, is "a good football player" but added that off-field issues play a big role in the team's evaluation process. Smith said he had not personally talked to Burress.

Asked about the Bears possibly adding Burress, quarterback Jay Cutler said, "If it happens, it happens."

As for Denver's Marshall, Smith said the Bears have not reached out to him. Marshall has requested a trade from Denver.

Cutler, who played two seasons with Marshall in Denver when Marshall caught more than 200 passes, said he has not talked to his former teammate about coming to the Bears. Cutler said he'd "let the guys upstairs handle that."

Cutler disagreed with the notion that the Bears need a No. 1 receiver. "I think we got one in Devin Hester," said Cutler, who added that Hester made some steps as a receiver last year, but this year is making giant strides.

"We got everything we need out there," Cutler said. "I'm 100 percent comfortable with the guys we have."

George Smith is an ESPN bureau reporter based in Chicago.