Monday, August 1, 2011
Quick hits: Training camp tidbits
By Kevin Seifert
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- For the first time this summer, we had all four NFC North teams on the field on the same day. I'm here at Lambeau Field for one more night, so let's breeze through Monday's developments elsewhere with links to the source of the information when appropriate:
Item: The agent for tailback Matt Forte visited the Chicago Bears training camp and spoke with the team's front office, according to Forte.
Comment: It's not uncommon for agents to make training camp visits. So if you're hoping Forte will have a new deal tomorrow, you might be a little optimistic.
Item: Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher said "no one" will be able to replace the leadership void left by the departure of center Olin Kreutz.
Comment: Urlacher should be first in line. He is not a rah-rah type by any means. But if you're a player in the Bears' locker room, wouldn't Urlacher be the first guy you would look to in this situation? Who else if not him?
Item: Detroit Lions rookie defensive tackle Nick Fairley left practice Monday morning because of a sore foot. X-rays were negative.
Comment: The Lions already have three significant names on their training camp injury report: Fairley, left tackle Jeff Backus (pectoral) and cornerback Alphonso Smith (foot). Eek.
Item: Minnesota Vikings left tackle Bryant McKinnie was placed on the non-football injury list to start camp.
Comment: Coach Leslie Frazier wouldn't tell reporters why the move was made but implied that McKinnie's weight was part of the issue and said he would eventually share more information. It's also worth noting that the Vikings signed free agent offensive lineman Charlie Johnson, who can play both tackle and guard positions.
Item: Receiver Bernard Berrian didn't practice Monday.
Comment: Berrian told reporters he has restructured his contract and will be a free agent after the 2012 season. That helped the Vikings' salary cap situation but makes him ineligible to practice before Thursday.
Item: The Vikings held a moment of silence before their first practice of the summer to remember Korey Stringer, who died from complications of heat stroke 10 years ago. The Vikings also painted Stringer's "No. 77" on their field.
Comment: The Vikings organization has almost completely turned over since 2001. They have new ownership, different members of the front office, a new coaching staff and obviously new players. So it's nice to see the next generation pay respect to the darkest day in franchise history.