Friday, February 15, 2013
NFC North links: Raiola's contract changes
By ESPN.com staff
Former safety Chris Harris retired from playing in the NFL last month. A day later, he was embarking on a new career after the Bears hired him to be their defensive quality control coach. Harris told ESPNChicago.com's Jeff Dickerson that he's ready to get started. "Being a coach will be something to adjust to," Harris said. "But I don't think the players will view me as a buddy just because I was teammates with a lot of them. I was pretty respected when I played here on the defensive side of the football. I don't see that being a problem. I'm just excited to do this."
Coach Marc Trestman has talked with longtime Bears Brian Urlacher and Devin Hester, but he won't comment about their futures with the team, writes the Chicago Tribune's Brad Biggs.
Bears tight ends have had the fewest receptions in the NFL the past two seasons, reports Biggs, so it's no surprise that the team is looking for more production at the position. “We need a tight end that can threaten the defense,” tight ends coach Andy Bischoff said. “We need a tight end that can create stress in the middle of the field, or wherever we place him, because we’re going to line him up next to the tackle and we’re going to line him up outside the numbers and we’re going to line him up in the backfield and we’re going to expect the defense to figure it out."
Center Dominic Raiola has agreed to restructure his contract, likely keeping him in a Lions uniform for a 13th season.
Former Bills safety George Wilson visited with the Lions Thursday and left without signing a deal, reports Chris McCosky of the Detroit News. But the free agent was "very optimistic" about his visit. The Lions currently only have three safeties under contract.
The team promoted Marcus Robertson to defensive backs coach to fill the void after Tim Walton left to become the defensive coordinator of the Rams, reports Mlive.com's Justin Rogers.
Defensive tackle Sammie Lee Hill made Pete Prisco's list of lesser-known players who could be good values in free agency.
Green Bay Packers
Greg Jennings tops Sam Munson's list of free agent wide receivers. "If teams are satisfied that Jennings isn’t a durability concern going forward, he should be the marquee receiver and the first guy pursued by multiple teams trying to answer their question at the position. Fast, fluid and efficient with zero character questions, he makes the most sense," Munson writes.
ESPNMilwaukee.com's Jason Wilde takes stock of where the Packers stand at tight end, where the big question is whether Jermichael Finley will be back with the team.
SI.com's Chris Burke recaps the Vikings' 2012 campaign and looks ahead to what's in store for 2013 season.
The team made some changes to its Norseman logo.
Pro Bowler Cris Carter was back at Vikings headquarters Thursday and thanked the team for its role in overcoming his substance abuse problems. Carter: "Personally, what they did for my life, that changed my life," Carter said. "Besides my mother, there's a lot of people that helped me out but there's not a lot of people that can say that I wouldn't have made the Hall without their involvement. But I can stand here today as a man to tell you if you wouldn't have helped me that day when I came here, that second week in September, I wouldn't have made it."
The Vikings picked up Leslie Frazier's contract option for 2014 instead of giving him a new long-term deal. What does that mean for Frazier's future with the club? Ben Goessling of the St. Paul Pioneer Press explores.