NFC North: Denny Hecker
DANA POINT, Calif. -- I'll be joining some of my ESPN.com colleagues over at the St. Regis in a few hours but just wanted to bring you up to date on the happenings in the NFC North.
It wasn't a newsy weekend as the movers and shakers traveled to Southern California. But here are links that will keep you on top of your Black and Blue game:
- Detroit president Tom Lewand insists the Lions did not deviate from their long-term plan by signing a 36-year-old nose tackle (Grady Jackson) and trading for a 30-year-old linebacker (Julian Peterson), according to Tom Kowalski of Mlive.com.
- Without former president/CEO Matt Millen, Lewand is now the Lions' top representative at these meetings, writes Nicholas J. Cotsonika of the Detroit Free Press.
- A tip of the hat to NFC East colleague Matt Mosley for this one: New York Giants owner John Mara said that taking away the Thanksgiving game from Detroit would be "particularly damaging." There are no plans to do so.
- Here's one we missed Sunday: According to Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune, University of Georgia quarterback Matthew Stafford scored an impressive 38 on his Wonderlic test. Receivers Darrius Heyward-Bey and Hakeem Nicks, whose names have been mentioned prominently as possible targets for NFC North teams, scored a 15 and 11, respectively.
- Thomas Rozwadowski of the Green Bay Press-Gazette listens to former Green Bay defensive end Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila give a sermon at a Wisconsin church. The theme: "Where is the love?"
- Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel tells the story of why the NFL isn't planning to change overtime rules by relating three key Packers games that included at least two possessions in overtime.
- Five years ago, Minnesota businessman Denny Hecker was trying to purchase part of the Minnesota Vikings. Now, his Twin Cities empire is in ruin and he has debt of more than $500 million. Here's a profile from Automotive News.