- It was nice to see Tommie Harris leave the team with class.
- This Chicago Tribune reports that defensive end Cory Wooton will oppose former Bear Steve McMichael in a mechanical bull-riding competition at Union Station. I’d rather see Wooton, who we were led to believe has first round talent, riding the backs of more passers.
- Michael C. Wright at ESPNChicago.com reports that the Bears renegotiated Julius Peppers‘ contract to save almost $8 million in cap space next season.
“The Bears did it by changing Peppers’ $10.5 million roster bonus into a signing bonus so they could prorate that $10.5 million over the life of the contract, which runs through 2015. The restructuring should give the team options once free agency finally begins, while allowing the team to re-sign some of its own free agents.”
Obviously the Bears wanted this initially in the form of a roster bonus so they wouldn’t have to pay it if Peppers had less impact than expected last season. Now that they know that’s not the case, they can pay it and simultaneously spread the cap hit out.
- The Peppers restructuring has led Bob LeGere at the Daily Herald to engage in some free agent speculation. Most people believe that at least one offensive lineman will be on the list.
- On a related note, according to ESPN you can remove guard Richie Incognito from the list but guard Robert Gallery is still a possibility.
- Offensive coordinator Mike Martz tells Vaughn McClure at the Chicago Tribune that a Comcast Sports Network report that the Bears would be releasing Chester Taylor “makes no sense”. John Mullin at CSN reponds that listening to Martz when it comes to personnel matters makes no sense. I’m thinking Texas Death Match.
In fairness to Mullin, you could argue that Martz single handedly destroyed the Rams with his personnel moves.
- ESPN‘s NFC North blogger Kevin Seifert points out that with the resigning of A.J. Hawk, the Packers have a glut at linebacker. This gave them leverage but now that the negotiation is over, something is likely to have to give. It sounds like Nick Barnett might be the odd man out.
- Judd Zulgad at the Minneapolis Star Tribune says that the Vikings have failed to offer a tender to Tarvaris Jackson, making him a free agent. Wise move. No one knows what the Vikings answer at quarterback is going to be but I think its safe to say Jackson, who was wildly inconsistent, wasn’t it.
- Philip Zaroo at mlive.com gets points to originality but little else as he argues that a lockout would be a good thing.
- For those of you who still care to read anything other than “We’ve come to a settlement”, here’s Michael Silver‘s rather optimistic report at Yahoo Sports which details the goings on yesterday behind the scenes.
One Final Thought
OK, maybe there’s hope for Bears fans after all: