- Sean Jensen at the Chicago Sun-Times wonders if free agent defensive tackle Anthony Adams won’t regret becoming an unrestricted free agent rather than re-signing with the Bears. It’s a risk but my gut feeling is that Adams will have a home with the Bears in the end if he wants it.
- Mel Kiper at ESPN takes a look takes a look at what each team might do if realistic options for thier biggest need are gone. Here’s what he said about the Bears:
“The Bears need to get some help on the offensive line, and I’d almost expect them to take the best available tackle, period. But they do need to add talent on the defensive interior as well, and a guy like [defensive tackle Jurrell] Casey or even [defensive tackle] Drake Nevis shouldn’t be out of the picture here.”
- The Bears website has been running video highlights of the top 30 prospects in the draft. The following are of Aaron Williams, Corey Liguet and Nate Solder. All three have been connected to the Bears s potential first round picks:
- Don Banks at SI.com writes about players who took unusual routes to the NFL draft. Guard Danny Watkins, who many think might eventually be a Bear, has an interesting story:
“Growing up a hockey player in British Columbia, Danny Watkins lived for Hockey Night in Canada and the Vancouver Canucks. The closest he got to football was watching the occasional CFL highlight and playing a little rugby in high school. After graduation, he aspired to a future in fire fighting, spending four years working in that risk-filled field before ever picking up a football.”
“Watkins enrolled in Butte College in Oroville, Calif., in 2007 to attend the school’s fire academy. But football somehow intervened, and after two successful seasons at the junior college, he was recruited by Baylor as a replacement for All-America left tackle and 2009 first-round pick Jason Smith, of the Rams.”
- If you hate quarterbacks (and deep inside everyone does just a little bit) you’ll love this article on the four best in this year’s draft by Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports:
“All I will say is that I’m glad I don’t need a quarterback this year,” said an NFC general manager, who went on to say plenty more. That GM was one of three executives who had particularly harsh comments for the quartet of quarterbacks who are expected to go in the first two rounds.
“If you’re telling me I have to bet the future of my team and my job on one of these guys, I would be really nervous,” the NFC GM said. “It’s tough enough to take a quarterback to begin with. But then you put these guys in the equation? No, thanks.”
- Todd McShay at Scouts Inc. on Pro Football Weekly draft expert Nolan Nawrocki’s evaluation of Cam Newton:
“Nothing he said is anything I haven’t heard. To defend Nolan, I’ve heard those things and a lot worse.”
- ESPN’s NFC North blogger Kevin Seifert doesn’t think Newton’s character issues are significant. Just keep him away from your laptop…:
“Character is subject to opinion, and it’s fair to question the motives of someone making a harsh judgment. But ultimately, the entire conversation is relevant to the extent that it impacts Newton’s performance on the field. So let’s go there. What objective measures can we take of Newton’s character and intangible abilities to be a quarterback?”
- Former NFL safety Matt Bowen at the National Football Post mildly disagrees with Seifert:
“I played with plenty of guys during my career that weren’t choirboys. Nothing wrong with that if they show up on tape. That’s reality in the NFL. As I have said before, it is the ‘business of winning,’ and you win at all costs.
“But when it comes to quarterbacks and the NFL draft, character starts to take precedent with the top prospects.”
“You want to draft a QB in the top five, top ten or in late first round? That’s fine, but realize you are telling your team, your veterans and your fan base that this guy (the one with red flags) is the leader of your ball club. And that includes the big paycheck.”
“Not at QB, because a risk that fails becomes a major bust. And it may takes years to recover when you miss on a top prospect at the QB position.”
- We all strongly suspect that Newton is lying when he denies knowledge of a pay for play request to Mississippi St. But it appears that LSU’s Patrick Peterson has been out right busted. Via Dave Miller at the National Football Post.
- Looks like Clemson quarterback Da’Quan Bowers is in free fall after his recent workout (Via Greg Rosenthall at profootballtalk.com) Bowers had knee surgery in January and with that kind of injury, he might not be the same for a year or more.
- The Miami Dolphins are on the clock at ESPN:
- Most people expect the Lions to be looking at cornerback or offensive line in the draft but Dave Birkett at the Detroit Free Press says it wouldn’t be a surprise to see them go with a defensive lineman.
- Bob von Sternberg at the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune documents some ugly reaction of Minnesota legislators to the details of the recent stadium bill. The most ominous comment comes from Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, who co-authored an earlier stadium bill and who thinks this one is just a political game:
“You know why it’s in the news? Because they have a really, really poor budget for Minnesota’s future. So they put a letter out in the hope, in the hope, that they can change the story. Can we talk about something else that we’re doing instead of what we’re doing to Minnesota’s future
“If they were serious about a stadium bill, they would have introduced it back in January or February. To wait until the middle of all the budget cut bills is just a political gimmick.”
- Matt Williamson at Scouts Inc. thinks the Vikings need the Jared Allen of 2000 in 2011. I’m not sure what happened to Allen last year but there’s little doubt that pressure up front from the defensive line was a big problem. Allen was a huge part of that.
- Former Cowboy defensive-line coach and interim head coach Paul Pasqualoni on last season’s team:
“Last year as we started the season with the Cowboys, they had won their first playoff game in quite a while, get into the season, we weren’t winning very many games because I think the decision was made ‘well we’ve come this far, we got this much done, maybe we can kind of pick up where we left off’.
“You can’t do that in this game. The game requires you to start over every single year.”
- The vast majority of the time when this happens in the modern NFL disaster follows. So its not surprise that Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones is in the Final Four of the Dallas Morning News “March Menace” tournament. The contest determines “the one person area sports lovers of all the local teams love to hate the most”. Jones is a shoe in to win it all.
One Final Thought
And now for that beautiful “one shining moment” for the pure and pristine sport of college football: