NFC North: Bill Noethlich

NFL teams were required to reduce their rosters to 75 players by Tuesday afternoon. Not all of the information has trickled out yet, but I thought I would share what has been reported or confirmed. I'll update this post as warranted.

Chicago Bears: Three players already were waived Monday, which brought the Bears' roster to 76. The final move was waiving injured fullback Will Ta'ufo'ou.

Detroit Lions: General manager Martin Mayhew made another of his patented something-for-nothing moves, trading offensive lineman Tyler Polumbus to the Seattle Seahawks for [*update] an undisclosed 2012 draft pick. The Lions had claimed Polumbus on waivers only last week, but the Seahawks had also placed a claim on him. Cornerback Jack Williams (knee) moved to the reserve/physically unable to perform list. *Update: Those moves got the Lions to 75 players.

Green Bay Packers: Cornerback Al Harris (knee) was moved to the reserve/PUP list, according to USA Today, meaning he isn't eligible to play until Week 7 at the earliest. As we noted earlier Tuesday, the Packers' secondary is in a bit of a crunch. *Update: Joining Harris on the PUP is safety Atari Bigby (ankle) and running back James Starks (hamstring). Running back Quinn Porter was put on season-ending injured reserve.

Minnesota Vikings: Waived were linebacker J Leman, receiver Marko Mitchell and offensive lineman Bill Noethlich. As expected, the Vikings moved receiver Sidney Rice to the reserve/PUP list. Same rules apply: Rice won't count against the Vikings' roster total but will be ineligible to play for the first six weeks of the season.
Faulty assumptions are everywhere, it seems. ESPN Chicago's Jeff Dickerson spots another one in this post, where he questions whether the likeliest combination of starting safeties for the Bears is Chris Harris and rookie Major Wright.

Dickerson suggests it might be a "stretch" to assume Wright will be ready to start immediately. He notes Danieal Manning could take on the role of strong safety with Harris playing as a free safety at the start of the season:
Manning, meanwhile, played well in the box last season against the San Francisco 49ers (eight tackles), and possesses the strength to support against the run and the speed to effectively cover tight ends. It's believed Manning may have put himself in the Bears' doghouse by missing the first few weeks of the voluntary offseason workout program. But [coach Lovie] Smith remains one of Manning's fans, despite some in the organization questioning the defensive back's instincts. The latter concern could keep Manning out of the mix for a move back to free safety.

If it's close, the Bears probably want Wright to start after targeting him in the draft. But first they have to find out if he's ready. That process starts in organized team activities this spring.

Continuing around the NFC North:



Thursday, 9/4
Sunday, 9/7
Monday, 9/8