NFC North: Jimmy Raye III

We're Black and Blue All Over

So the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox -- er, the New York Giants and the New England Patriots -- will meet in Super Bowl XLVI. We here in the NFC North have a very East-Coast title game to look forward to. (Or not.) Don't worry. We have plenty to keep us busy here in the Midwest.

Tops on the list is the Chicago Bears' search for a general manager, which you would think could near its conclusion this week. The Bears interviewed five candidates for the job last week, including current director of player personnel Tim Ruskell, and probably would have either a second round of interviews this week or simply make a decision.

Stay tuned on that one. The other candidates include Marc Ross (Giants), Jason Licht (New England Patriots), Jimmy Raye III (San Diego Chargers) and Phil Emery (Kansas City Chiefs).

Continuing around the NFC North:
We're Black and Blue All Over:

Half of the NFC North will now be impacted by the Oakland Raiders' wide search for a new head coach.

We already knew that new Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie would have his eyes on multiple candidates from the Green Bay Packers, where he spent the past 17 seasons. But he is also interested in speaking with Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mike Tice. The Raiders requested permission Tuesday to speak with Tice, a story first reported by Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.

Tice was promoted to his current job earlier this month, but by NFL rule the Bears can't deny permission to interview. He spent four seasons as the Minnesota Vikings' head coach from 2002-05 and is one of perhaps a dozen candidates linked to the first round of Raiders interviews; he is one of the few with previous head-coaching experience.

Continuing around the NFC North:
  • The Bears have now interviewed two of their five candidates for their general manager job, the team announced. San Diego Chargers executive Jimmy Raye III was the latest through the door.
  • Former Bears receiver Sam Hurd has a Jan. 25 arraignment set in Dallas after being indicted on federal drug conspiracy and possession charges. has the story.
  • Green Bay Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers would consider moving cornerback Charles Woodson to safety next season if Nick Collins (neck) doesn't come back. Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has more.
  • Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin is a finalist for the Miami Dolphins' head-coaching job and will receive a second interview, notes Jason Wilde of
  • Former Packers coach Mike Holmgren will be inducted into the team's Hall of Fame this summer, notes Kareem Copeland of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
  • Both of the Detroit Lions' backup quarterbacks, Shaun Hill and Drew Stanton, will be free agents this spring, notes Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. One or both could move on.
  • Justin Rogers of review the appearance of Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh on "Jimmy Fallon."
  • Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton is moving closer to naming a preferred site for the Vikings' new stadium, according to Mike Kaszuba of the Star Tribune.