NFC North: John Mackey

We're Black and Blue All Over:

On Monday, we noted the Detroit Lions have enough salary-cap space to sign free-agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha if they choose. Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press suggests the Lions won't choose to.

Birkett reports the Lions want to add a cornerback via free agency but doesn't think they can break the bank considering upcoming bonuses due to defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, tailback Jahvid Best and left tackle Jeff Backus. The Lions also would like to sign defensive end Cliff Avril to a long-term deal, according to Birkett.

Of course, much could change once we get the final details of the new collective bargaining agreement and find out exactly what Asomugha is looking for. Sometimes, suggestions that a player is too expensive can be viewed more as a negotiating tool than a statement of fact. But as we discussed Monday, if a bidding war develops, the Lions would have to sacrifice several other facets of their roster to have a legitimate chance to sign Asomugha.

Continuing around the NFC North:
  • Free-agent linebacker Stephen Tulloch could be a target of the Lions and could push DeAndre Levy to outside linebacker, notes Tom Kowalski of Mlive.com.
  • From the Chicago Tribune: "Former Chicago Bears defensive end Richard Dent has selected his college coach Joe Gilliam as his presenter when Dent is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Aug. 6."
  • Former Bears tailback Gayle Sayers believes the NFL should have done more to help tight end John Mackey, who developed dementia after his playing career. Fred Mitchell of the Tribune has more.
  • Time is running short on maintaining a schedule that would allow the Aug. 7 Hall of Fame game to be played, notes the Tribune.
  • Green Bay Packers guard Josh Sitton rode on a Navy C-130 with quarterback Matt Flynn last week, writes Bob Wolfley of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
  • The new Metrodome roof could undergo a test inflation this week, according to Kevin Duchschere of the Star Tribune. It's still undetermined whether the playing surface will have to be replaced for this season, which would cost about $600,000.
  • Some political leaders in St. Paul would like to see the proposed Minnesota Vikings stadium benefit the city and surrounding suburbs more than it currently would, according to Frederick Melo of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

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