Thursday, July 1, 2010
On the radar: Buzz Players
By Kevin Seifert
» NFC On the Radar: East | West | North | South » AFC: East | West | North | South
A player, coach or issue that should be on your radar as training camp approaches.
As much as we like to downplay offseason practices, they almost always focus our attention as training camp approaches. For reasons not always explainable, some players head to summer vacation surrounded by the proverbial buzz.
This spring is no different, so with training camps about a month away from opening, let's nominate a Buzz Player for each NFC North team:
Player: Cornerback Zack Bowman
Comment: The Bears moved Bowman to the left side, ostensibly making him their No. 1 cornerback after a six-interception season in 2009. Those who covered the Bears' open practices reported Bowman was an interception machine. Can Bowman take the leap to elite status in 2010?
Player: Linebacker Zack Follett
Comment: Follett has gotten as much ink as any Lions player this offseason, becoming a bit of a cult hero for his off-kilter personality and accessibility to fans. That's gotten him on the radar. But as the Lions plug him into Ernie Sims' old weak-side position, can the guy play? We're about to find out.
Green Bay Packers
Player: Receiver Jordy Nelson
Comment: The Packers' top draft pick in 2008, Nelson has 55 receptions in 29 games over the past two seasons. Nelson appeared to have taken a significant step this spring, however, and might make it difficult for the Packers to keep him off the field. Starter Donald Driver is 35. Just sayin'.
Player: Quarterback Joe Webb
Comment: I think Webb is as surprised as anyone to have been switched back to quarterback after most NFL teams projected him as a receiver. He could be part of a larger power play to free up the Vikings' third quarterback position, but there is no doubt people are talking about his combination of size and athleticism. We should know by the end of training camp if the buzz is well-founded.