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March 16, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Kevin Seifert

Kevin Seifert
  (1:59 PM)

Hi everyone. Thanks for coming to our re-scheduled chat. Remember, we'll go for 30 minutes today. I know you're all glued to the NCAA Tournament, anyway.

Jerry (Detroit)

What are odds the lions can get Tulloch or another MLB and a decent CB in FA?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:01 PM)

The cornerback market moved quickly, and for the most part, those left in free agency wouldn't necessarily be starters. The Lions, for example, had Jacob Lacey in town for a visit today. As for Tulloch, it sounds like both sides are waiting out the market. There is a decent chance still that Tulloch comes back.

Tim (El Cajon, CA)

Kevin, since Cook was acquitted of all charges, and the team originally suspended him for 2 games w/o pay, then the rest of the season with pay, will they give him his pay for those 2 weeks now? Just curious. They should since he was completely acquitted I would think.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:02 PM)

I doubt that will happen. He was in jail during a game and, all things considered, Cook should be happy if all he loses in this episode is two game checks.

Donny (South Dakota)

Pack still the early favorites for the division? Seems like two years in a row they actually will get worse in the offseason due to free agent losses and bears and lions make moves.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:04 PM)

That's a tough question to answer four days into the player acquisition period. It's true that the third-place team from last year has made some good moves and the Packers haven't done anything yet. That's all we can say.

Tyler (Bloomington, IL)

Hey Kevin great job this week. The Bears came out swinging this week signing Marshall, Campbell and a few other players, but they've been quiet since. The Bears plan on picking up any more FA's soon, or do you think they're done for awhile??

Kevin Seifert
  (2:05 PM)

Well, they were still signing guys as of last night -- Israel Idonije. I have to think they'll keep monitoring the defensive end market, but the talented players available are dwindling.

Pete (Minneapolis, MN)

Kevin,I am so utterly disappointed with the move the vikings are making. With the bears getting marshall, the lions and packers looking like true playoff caliber teams, the vikings seem like they are going to be at the bottom of the nfc north for a while. Any hope for a quick turn around?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:07 PM)

That hope would sit with the development of Christian Ponder. If they are going to make a quick turnaround, it will have to include significant improvement from Ponder. I can mostly agree with the Vikings' approach, although it's a little curious that they weren't more aggressive at cornerback. They'll get Chris Cook back, but the position remains thin.

Jay (Boston)

I have almost complete confidence in GM Ted. I firmly believe it is more dangerous to hang onto a player too long than let a player go too early. So if an experienced 30 Wells, who I love, ends up somewhere else, I can accept that. However, if that happens, do you see the Pack having any competitors at center who are not rookies come training camp? That though scares me.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:08 PM)

There are a number of free agent centers available if Wells leaves. One name no one has mentioned is Matt Birk, even if most everyone thinks he'll go back to Baltimore. He wouldn't be a bad bridge to the Packers' next long-term center if it comes to that.

Tim Tebow (packing)

Do you think the Vikings are totally committed to Christian Ponder?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:09 PM)

Haha. Yes. Or, at least, not uncommitted enough to pursue you.

Ben (Detroit MI)

If McNeil passes the medical tests with the lions do you see him being signed and possibly being the end of the Backus era? Hes younger and when healthy he would be a obvious upgrade.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:09 PM)

I think the Lions are looking at their options at this point. McNeill has had a lot of health issues himself. Say what you will about Backus, but he's never missed a game. I don't think a decision has been made either way.

alan (chicago)

can the bears afford wimbley with all of their other signings?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:10 PM)

The rule salary cap rule is that there is always a way to fit someone in, depending on how important he is and how much you would be willing to hamstring yourself in the future. So yes, the Bears could fit Wimbley in if they thought it was important enough.

Andrew (San Diego)

What does GB's cap situation look like? Are they resigned to addressing holes internally and through the draft or might they uncharacteristically dip into FA? Any word on who they are targeting in the draft?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:11 PM)

The Packers opened free agency with about $7 million in cap space, some of which they'll need to sign their draft class. I'm not expecting much, if any, free agency participation. As we discussed on the blog Thursday, they presumably have three huge contracts on the horizon: Rodgers, Jennings and Matthews.

luke (mn)

it seems Spielman has figured out how to get the Vikings out of Minnesota, use the offseason to make a bad team worse so that the fan base gives up on the team and doesn't bother to waste their times going to the games. Cause we all know he can't draft!!

Kevin Seifert
  (2:13 PM)

Spielman has gotten a pretty short honeymoon as GM, huh? He's made some good moves in his time, from Jared Allen to Adrian Peterson to Percy Harvin. I'm not saying he's Ron Wolf, but I do think people are being quick to judge.

jason (Work)

Does the John Carlson signing make you think its making a move towards the NE offense? 2 TEs that can catch (Gronk/Hernandez and Carlson/Rudolph) and a slot reciever(Welker and Harvin) with no outside reciever

Kevin Seifert
  (2:15 PM)

The Patriots offense is unique, including the fact that it has one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history running it. But the NFL trend is definitely toward the matchup advantages that fast tight ends can provide. So I don't see Carlson and Rudolph as being redundant. They can put a strain on the defense.

Forrest (Indy)

I heard Shaun Hill was visiting the rams a few days ago....do you have any news regarding that situation?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:16 PM)

Nothing more. It sounds like Drew Stanton visited the Jets. The general feeling is that Hill wants to come back to the Lions and they want him back, but business is business.

Ethan (Austin)

Kevin, top of the afternoon to you. Can the Lions afford what Tulloch wants and does it make sense to pay a LB that much?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:17 PM)

My guess is they don't want to pay what he's asked for, and now he's in the process of seeing if anyone will. That's kind of the definition of testing the market. The Lions run the risk of him signing with a team that hits his number, but they also will be there if he doesn't get it.

James (IL)

What are your thoughts on the Brandon Marshall trade?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:18 PM)

Great deal if he in fact has turned the corner, which would mean Sunday's incident is a false accusation. If he really did punch a woman Sunday morning, then it's a really brazen move that would call into question Phil Emery's judgment.

Josh (Los Angeles, CA)

When is Collins scheduled to hear from his doctors?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:19 PM)

All we know is the appointment would take place sometime in March.

the dalai slama (minnesota)

When you move to Bristol, CT, do you lose your minnesota residency along with your Minnesota work ethic?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:19 PM)

I didn't move to Bristol so I wouldn't know.

Ethan (Austin)

The Lions freed up a ton of cap space this week and haven't done a thing with it. Whats up with that? Aren't only bargain bin guys left in a week or so?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:20 PM)

They did not free up "a ton." They scraped together enough to get by. Big difference. Calvin Johnson and Cliff Avril are their big-money "signs" this offseason.

Bryant (Milwaukee)

Its been bantered around by some Packer fans that it might have made sense to shop Aaron Rodgers for a boatload of picks, and to hang on to Flynn at a cheaper price, to save money for the upcoming extensions. Please set the record straight that people that think that need to be checked into a insane assylum.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:21 PM)

That has to be a joke, right? Don't even get me started....

Tyler (Irvine, CA)

In light of the monster DE contracts signed this week, should the Lions A) Enjoy Avril for one more year, or B) Trade hime while they still can.Obviously, I don't think they can afford another 10 million + annual salary.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:21 PM)

I think they're reasonably confident they'll get a longtime deal with him.

Graham (not GB)

Is Coach Mike's quarterback school a casualty of the new CBA? I've been waiting 2 years to solidify the nuts and bolts.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:22 PM)

It can't take place in the previous form, but McCarthy will have a form of it when guys can get back to the facility next month.

dalaislama (Minnesota)

do you really believe there is a chance to the SI argument of the Dolphins trading up for Tannehill? What could the vikings recieve that would make the Dolphins willing to da that trade?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:23 PM)

Teams panic over QBs in the draft every year. If the Vikings could get the Dolphins' first-round pick next year, they should be happy about that.

Josh (Los Angeles, CA)

Do you believe that the lack of a real off-season hurt younger players like Sam Shields? Is it conceivable that he will make a nice jump this year? Also, am I crazy to be very intrigued by Davon House?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:24 PM)

We saw almost nothing of House last year, but his speed was certainly intriguing before the draft. As far as Shields, I think it's reasonable to believe he missed out by not having an offseason last year. But tackling is tackling. Either you do it or you don't. He didn't suddenly lose that skill.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:25 PM)

Remember, today is a 30-minute deal, so we've got about 5 minutes left.

Jason (Chicago)

Any chance the Bears improve their atrocious offensive line? If they don't what are the odds that Cutler finishes the season injured for the third year in a row?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:26 PM)

I think the hope is that they will increase the amount of protection they devote on a given pass. They didn't help themselves in the past two years by devoting five guys to the blocking scheme so often.

Jim (Texas)

Are the Bears and Forte going to be able work out a long term deal?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:27 PM)

I'm not sure. It's awfully tempting to leave a running back on a franchise tag. Maybe the toughest position to commit a lot of guaranteed money to.

Butkus (Chicago)

Do you think Marshall will implode again or do you think buddy Cutler will get him to toe the line.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:28 PM)

I don't think Cutler will be able to help. It's on Marshall to handle himself. Maybe Cutler can keep him happy on the field, but he can't stop him from having a domestic incident.

Scott (Chicago)

I keep seeing Bear fans talking about K. Wimberly. Do you have any indication that the Bears actually have any interest in him?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:28 PM)

There had been some interest in previous years, but that was under a different general manager.

KGB (GR)

Do you think the Bears moved ahead of the Lions in the standings with their moves from the offseason?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:29 PM)

Some would argue that getting Cutler back healthy would allow them to do that. Look at where both teams were last year when Cutler got hurt.

Frank (Chi)

Do you think the Bears are gonna sign a guy like Michael Bush, or try to find a legitimate backup in the later rounds of the draft?

Kevin Seifert
  (2:30 PM)

I think they'll have someone besides Marion Barber as Forte's backup. Bush would be a great get.

Kevin Seifert
  (2:30 PM)

OK everyone, thanks so much. Have a great weekend.