Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

March 6, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Kevin Seifert

Kevin Seifert
  (2:01 PM)

Hi everyone. Let's get to this...

Greg (MI)

Why was the Avril getting franchised article buried on ESPN's website? That is big news.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:02 PM)

It wasn't buried. It was one of the top headlines on the NFL page all day Monday. I will say it was completely expected, however. It would have been more newsworthy if the Lions HADN'T franchised him.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

What NFC North Team do you think needs a Quarterback in the 2012 NFL Draft?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:03 PM)

Each team feels pretty set at starter. So really we're talking about potential backups from the draft. The Packers, Bears and Lions could all dip their toes in the later rounds.

donrio (Judd Zulgad's hoodie)

Very disturbing article by Peter King talking about the NFC Championship game. The fact they caught a Saints defender on the mic saying "pay me my money" after the low hit on Favre makes me believe the bounty did have an effect on the game. in a negative way for the Vikings. It would be unprecedented but could Goddell strip the Saints of their titles that year besides the suspension,fines and draft picks they will lose?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:05 PM)

Peter did some great reporting in that story. I really don't think the Saints will be stripped of any title and I would question how much impact that has. When the NCAA does it, does anyone care? The fans of the school in question still have the memories and probably don't care what it says in the history book. The general consensus is the Saints will be heavily fined, while their GM and coach will probably face suspensions. It's likely they'll lose draft picks as well. How much and how many? That would all be a guess.

Martin Mayhew (The Lion Kingdom)

Kevin, What are the realistic chances of my signing Calvin to that extension, resiging Backus AND Tulloch AND signing Cliff to that long term deal AND picking up a free agent CB?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:06 PM)

I think all of that could happen with the exception of signing a legitimate free agent cornerback, especially if Johnson lowers his cap number as part of his extension. The Lions could sign a CB as well, but by significantly mortgaging their future. They're not likely to be heavily involved in veteran FA.

James ((IL))

How much of a chance do the Bears have of getting Vincent Jackson?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:07 PM)

All things equal, I think he wants to go back to San Diego. If the Bears want him, they'll have to blow him out of the water with a huge financial deal. I really don't know if that's going to be Phil Emery's style.

James ((IL))

If the Saints lose picks, do some go to the Bears, considering they injured Earl Bennett and Gabe Carimi?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:09 PM)

Nope. They just are vacated.

Craig (Braintree, MA)

Kevin,Were you surprised by Favres comments about bounty gate?Do you think the bounty stuff affected the outcome of the game against the Vikings?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:10 PM)

I think Favre getting knocked around affected the outcome of the game. Pressure led to one of his interceptions, and maybe it contributed to the second and final one as well. They didn't knock him out of the game, though, so in reality the "bounty" wasn't realized.

Tearloch (Hartford, CT)

Kevin, so what are the chances of the Bears finally giving Jay Cutler a legit weapon at WR? VJax? Colston? High draft pick?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:11 PM)

I think they'll get somebody. They have to. VJax is going to be very expensive and highly sought after. The big problem is we just don't know what Emery's style will be. Comparisons to Ted Thompson don't suggest he will be wild in free agency.

Dean (Duluth) [via mobile]

Kevin, do you see Everson Griffen's role increasing next season? He seems primed for a breakout year.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:14 PM)

Not if he stays at defensive end. Jared Allen and Brian Robison both played well and stayed on the field for most of the Vikings' snaps. They need to find somewhere else to put Griffen -- maybe OLB -- if they want him on the field more.

Tearloch (Hartford, CT)

Kevin, how was you vacation?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:14 PM)

Staycations are the best.

Alan (Detroit by way of Florence, WI)

Thoughts on Finnegan being picked up by any NFCN teams? The last CB we (it's ok I am a Packer's owner) picked up in free agency seemed to work out alright!

Kevin Seifert
  (2:15 PM)

Based on cap space, the Bears are the likeliest candidates. Finnegan should fetch a nice chunk of change. But again, we don't know that Emery is going to be the kind of guy to jump after the top FAs available. I woudn't rule out the Vikings, either. He fits their profile.

Steve (Lansing)

It's been awfully quiet out of Allen Park. Any word on how things are going with Calvin, Cliff and Stephen? They made a big deal about how they were going to sit down with Calvin's agent at the combine, but I never heard a peep about the meeting.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:17 PM)

If there is something imminent with any of those guys, I haven't heard about it. It doesn't sound like the Lions got close with Avril before franchising him, but the pressure is off now in terms of timing. Calvin's deal is going to be very, very difficult. He has all the leverage. If he does nothing, and they want to keep him in 2013, they'll face the prospect of a $26.4 million franchise tag.

Michael (Tallahassee)

What are the chances Flynn turns out to be an avg NFL QB at best? After all he did back up JaMarcus Russell in college.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:18 PM)

Ha. I think it's fair to questions the sample size we have of his work. There is really a lot of projection that has to go on. But people around the league have a lot of respect for how the Packers run their offense and develop quarterbacks. That will count for a lot. I would say Flynn, in the right spot next year, would be an above-average starter.

phill (pa)

which one do you keep stanton or hill one or the other is going to be a cap casuality

Kevin Seifert
  (2:19 PM)

I think they'll end up keeping Hill. They obviously think more of him considering he's been the No. 2 while Stanton has been No. 3. And I don't get the sense Hill is looking to find a team he can compete to start for.

Charlie (Ill)

Better chance of being a bear next year....vincent jackson or randy moss

Kevin Seifert
  (2:20 PM)

Vincent Jackson. Not sure if anyone in Chicago has the stomach to deal with Randy.

Sam (Burnsville) [via mobile]

Not to be a conspiracy theorist but the big news wasn't the bounty in the 2010 NFC Championship game. It was the terrible officiating that obviously didn't want the Vikings to have a possession in overtime.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:22 PM)

I think the statute of limitations on officiating from that game is up. Five turnovers is five turnovers. None were caused by officials, although one could have been reversed if they had called roughing on McCray.

Aaron (shakopee,mn)

How big will the vikings new stadium be? 60k or 70k?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:22 PM)

65,000 with room to expand to 72,000.

Ryan (WI)

Latest on Driver and Clifton?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:23 PM)

Nothing's changed. Waiting to see if both will be released. Renegotiated contracts could also happen. Long story short, don't know yet.

thebaskett (MilkyWay Galaxy)

Hey Kev, Hope you had a great Vacay. Just curious what your thoughts on Chris Cook case is?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:24 PM)

Sounds like he's going to put a lot of his case on his girlfriend recanting some of the accusations she made about the incident. My guess is he is back with the Vikings next year, even if the NFL disciplines him in some way.

David (Atlanta)

Aren't V-Jax and Coloston too old to give the big-time multi-year deals that they will be seeking? Both will cross over into the 30s after the 2012 season. Neither seems like a long-term solution, right?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:26 PM)

Conditioning and health will go into it, but in the end this is a passing league and anyone who can elevate it significantly for a team will be highly valued.

Trevor (G.H.)

What do the packers do w/ Driver? most franchise's would show him the door, but he has been a class player and is a clutch guy even if he doesn't have an impact like he used to. i would like to say G.B. is different and will let him stay, am i wrong?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:26 PM)

I don't think they'll be sentimental about it. If they're ready to move on, they will.

Devlin (Bemidji, MN)

Trouble follows trouble. Randy Moss working out for the "Saints" tomorrow....ironic isnt either, or maybe appropriate.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:27 PM)

Workout was today. I wish them all the best of luck.

Rich (Philly)

Kevin- what happens if the legislature or city council vote against the new stadium proposal? Is there still a chance the Vikes won't be in Minny a few years from now?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:28 PM)

I've got to believe they're far enough along that arms can be twisted now. Politics is give and take. If the city council members who are opposed can get something for changing their votes, they will. The mayor has to handle that part.

Mike (NC)

Who could be a potential FA LT takle that the Bears could try to get? Webb is nothing but a back up ni my opinion.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:28 PM)

Upgrades at left tackle are rarely available. Webb is a Tice guy and indications are they don't want to replace him.

thebaskett (MilkyWay Galaxy)

Do you find it strange that a lot of ex-NFL players are saying every team has some kind of Pay for Play incentives. Do you believe that many teams do this, or are they just overstating that fact?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:30 PM)

I'm stunned at the reaction of players in general. So many of them are saying something along the lines of, "You don't want to know what happens behind the curtain," implying that bounties and other distasteful elements are part of what go into making a game that fans love. I wonder how many of the would be cavalier about it if their careers were altered by someone motivated to hurt them and knock them out of a game.

Chris (Ny)

Hey Kevin, how likely are the Pack to resign Scott Wells?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:31 PM)

It seems like a deal that would benefit both sides to get done. As much as we all like Wells, is there really a team out there who will give him a lucrative multi-year deal at his age? His pride might be hurt by the Packers' offer, but it's far from certain he would do better on the open market.

Mr. Donowitz (the trenches)

How was the vacation? Batteries recharged for some stadium updates?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:32 PM)

Hahaha. I'm ALWAYS game for a stadium update.

James ((IL))

If VJAX does not want to play in Chicago, do the Bears make a play for Mario Williams?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:32 PM)

I'm not sure if they'll want to tie up so much of their cap and cash at defensive end, when you consider what Julius Peppers is already set to make.

Tearloch (Hartford, CT)

Kevin, if you were a GM, how much would Matt Forte be worth to you?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:33 PM)

I very clearly am not a GM, but his market value is clear. He should get Arian Foster-DeAngelo Williams money. If he's looking for Adrian Peterson or Chris Johnson money, I don't see it.

Calvin Johnson's Bank Account (Caymen Islands)

Kevin, any thoughts on diverisfying? I seem to be getting pretty full, and the future looks sunny....

Kevin Seifert
  (2:34 PM)

Wrong guy to ask. My advice would be to put it under the mattress. Not a lot of interest to be earned there, however.

Matt (NYC)

Do you think that the Bears will go after Kyle Orton for the backup QB job?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:34 PM)

I do. The question will be whether Orton is ready to give up on being a starter, or if he will seek a job on a team with a less settled situation.

BWC (Wiscansin)

It would seem as though both Freeney (32) and John Abraham (33) are going to be free agents. Do the Packers even give a look to either of these guys?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:35 PM)

As with pretty much every free agent and the Packers, it's highly unlikely.

Sgt. Donowitz (taking it to the nazi's)

With Grant most likely not coming back - in addition to Flynn and possibly Wells, Pack should be getting some sweet compensatory picks next yr should they not?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:35 PM)

That will depend in part on the value of the contracts those players sign with other teams.

David (Atlanta)

Do NFL teams really worry about how much money they are spending at a particular position? People seem worried that the Bears would have too much committed to DE if they had Peppers and Mario Williams, but wouldn't that help build a great defense?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:36 PM)

It's a balancing act. It would create a great defense, but it would also limit the flexibility to balance it with a better offense. Generally speaking, you've got to spread your cap around the roster.

Mike (Buffalo Grove, IL)

With all this talk about hits on Favre affecting the NFC Championship Game, why exactly does Adrian Peterson continue to elude culpability for fumbling the ball 4 times?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:37 PM)

Oh, I don't know that he's eluded culpability. He was the subject of my primary post that night. And the five turnovers are mentioned often.

Smeagol (fishing)

So you think Emery will go for more second tier, lower priced free agents than a big name (or two)?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:38 PM)

Truly would be a guess. He has been part of front offices that have been big spenders, and he has also been exposed to the other side of that. But his reputation is relatively conservative.

Ethan (Austin)

Kevin, are you an online gamer? If so what is your game?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:39 PM)

I was a D&D guy before there was an online, but nothing since. Sorry.

Smeagol (fishing)

Any preliminary talks between other teams and Scott Wells' agent?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:39 PM)

I hope not. That would be tampering.

Corey (D.C.)

Do you think Jermichael Finley was signed because of the production they expect of him, or because of the impact he has on opening up the field, regardless of his production?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:39 PM)

Both. There is no doubt they are defended differently when he is on the field.

Joe Carbondale (Tulsatown)

Kevin, this "pay for pain" campaign that was run by the Saints is less than honorable on so many levels, and the full effects of its application may not be realized for years. For example, if it is proven that Saints players intentionally went out of there way to severely injure Brett Favre, the 2009 NFC Championship is only were the initial effect of the bounty system occurred. The injuries Favre suffered in that game have had, and will continue to have an effect for some time, on the fortunes of our franchise. This is what is being overlooked by the media in my opinion. Conspired criminal activity ($10000 bounty on Favre) has contributed greatly to Minnesota's current situation. Do you agree?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:41 PM)

Hmmmmm. Under that theory, absent the beating Favre took in that game, he would have been much better in 2010 and that terrible season wouldn't have played out as poorly as it did? I think ultimately this roster, veteran-laded as it was, was headed for a crash. Perhaps that game sped up the timing, but it was bound to happen.

Jeff (Nashville)

If the Packers cut Clifton, will they have enough $ to get a good FA center? I am assuming Wells is gone at this point (are you?) and that they actually do something in FA for a change...

Kevin Seifert
  (2:42 PM)

I'm not assuming he is gone. The Packers have gone to the wire with a lot of their pending free agents, and in some cases they've tested the market before returning. But I do think they'll need to monitor the FA market because drafting a center and starting him right away is a risky proposition.

David (Atlanta)

As a fan, I really like Forte and would love to see him as a Bear for a long time, but what's the average career for an NFL running back? Five-year deal is too long, right?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:44 PM)

The length of the deal isn't as important as the guarantee. Usually that happens over the first three years. It's reasonable to expect good production from Forte through the 2014 season, after which the guaranteed money of a "long-term" deal would be expired, and they could release him without owing him more money. So a five-year deal that ends realistically after three might be fine.

Rick (Milwaukee)

Has Javid Best been cleared to resume football activities yet? Any news on Best or LeShore would be great.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:44 PM)

Best has not been cleared to practice or anything like that, as far as I know. The Lions are optimistic on his future, but it's unpredictable. Leshoure apparently is on his way to a full recovery.

VWCAU (Minneapolis)

Kevin,Hope you had a great vacation! Have you ever heard whispers of any other teams that have had bounties similar to the Saints in your time covering the NFL or is this a first?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:45 PM)

Thanks! Nothing specific, that's for sure. You would have to be naive to think that teams don't encourage the kind of hits that knock players out of games, but the different with the Saints is both the organization of it and the fact that they were warned 2 years ago to knock it off.

Michael (Tallahassee)

It appears the national media is making a mountain out of a mole hill regarding the latest scandal. It's true team "management" should be held to a higher standard. However, players always aim to hit hard on the field as long as the hits are legal there is no big deal.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:48 PM)

Well, players offering bounties on other players is a little over the top for me. Play this out. Let's say Jonathan Vilma offers a $10,000 bounty on knocking Favre out of the game. And let's say the following year, the Vikings put togehter a $15,000 bounty for knocking out Vilma. Someone hits him in the knees and tears his ACL. Is he going to be OK with that? I highly doubt it. I can't believe players are endorsing bounties without realizing their own careers could be impacted by them.

Jason (Wyoming)

D&D? What version? please say 3.5

Kevin Seifert
  (2:49 PM)

I would bet it was 1.0. This was 1980 something.

1298ty (Detroit)

Can you replace the stadium updates with updates on Jahvid Best and Mikhel Leshoure? I'm sure I'm not the only one who'd appreciate that..

Kevin Seifert
  (2:49 PM)

It would be an easy cut-and-paste.

Yogi (Alaska)

Some people speculate the Packers could show interest in Michael Bush. Doesnt seem like their style to me...what do you think?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:50 PM)

I'm going to write on this tomorrow, but I'm not sure if they have a starting running back on their roster. Mike McCarthy talked about working through the run game this offseason, but to me "who" is just as important as "what" they're going to do. Hard to depend on James Starks given his injury history.

Corey (D.C.)

One MAJOR aspect people arent acknowledging with regards to bountygate is, if the info i read is correct, is that the NFL and the Saints told Greg Williams to stop it in 2010 after initial investigations concluded that it could be happening, and he didnt. That alone changes the dynamics entirely. It is one thing to break a rule. It is another thing to break a rule and be told by superiors to stop it, and continue to do it anyway.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:50 PM)

Agree 100 percent. Brazen.

Corey (D.C.)

For us non-nerds, what is D&D?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:51 PM)

Dungeons and Dragons.

John (Wisc)

any news on Alex Green? I heard he was ahead of schedule.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:51 PM)

That's what McCarthy said at the combine. Sounds like he'll be available when training camp begins.

pete (right here)

why are people so upset about this bounty thing? it seems 99% of them love when they see big hits and then complain because of something like this. Football is a violent sport

Kevin Seifert
  (2:53 PM)

We talked about this a little on the blog yesterday. There is definitely a segment of people who are drawn to football because it's basically modern-day gladiator events, where winning occurs when you disable your opponent. But there is also a segment of people who don't like all the injuries and want to see their favorite players on the field. They don't want to see them knocked out. So it goes both ways.

Gregg Williams (Roger Goddell's office)

Kevin, have you got any advise for me?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:54 PM)

Get a lawyer.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:54 PM)

Ok, a few more here.

DaveB (Knoxville TN)

Any chance Desmond Bishop could be moved to ROLB so DJ Smitg could get a chance at ILB? Two birds with one stone.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:55 PM)

Interesting thought. Haven't heard anyone mention it, though. There's a difference between being an inside linebacker who can get a pass rush and an outside linebacker who can get a pass rush.

Rob (Sharon )

I smell a Super Bowl in the twin cities, one played there, not with the Vikings.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:56 PM)

If they build a stadium, they'll get a Super Bowl -- eventually.

alan (chicago)

why wouldnt the bears go after mario williams? even though it ties upa lot of the cap in the D-line, they need a young piece to build around and it would cover up the poor secondary

Kevin Seifert
  (2:57 PM)

Because they have other issues to deal with that are probably more glaring. They need more firepower on offense, to start with.

Corey (D.C.)

RE:Pete, your point is not a valid one. It is like saying it is okay for a boxed to put lead in his gloves because, hey, boxing is violent. In football you simply cannot have guys change the way they hit and tackle because they are more focused on hurting someone that making a play. Im fired up!

Kevin Seifert
  (2:57 PM)

Well said. In the end, the Saints broke the rules, even if they weren't the only ones.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:57 PM)

OK everyone. Thanks so much. Chat with you next week.