I had an unavoidable conflict Monday but am back and ready for a full day of blogging and chatting Tuesday. Thanks for your understanding.
We discussed a potential union of Chicago and quarterback Marc Bulger last week when noting Bears coach Lovie Smith's -- or offensive coordinator Mike Martz's -- preference for a veteran backup quarterback. The next step toward that possibility occurred Monday when St. Louis released Bulger.
Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune considers Bulger an ideal candidate to be the Bears' backup but wonders if he would accept such a secondary role:
Bulger likely will have better opportunities elsewhere. It's even possible a team like the Raiders, Panthers or Bills will give him a chance to compete for a starting job. But it does make sense for the Bears to at least place a phone call to Bulger's agent Tom Condon.
Bulger played for Martz in St. Louis, but ultimately the Bears can't offer him much in the way of playing time with starter Jay Cutler in place. For that reason, Bulger might be more interested in Arizona or Pittsburgh, reports Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times.
Continuing around the NFC North:
Green Bay center/guard Jason Spitz, a restricted free agent, signed his tender Monday and will report to the Packers' offseason program Tuesday. Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com has more.
Minnesota quarterback Sage Rosenfels said he has been given no indication that his future with the Vikings has changed, writes Bob Sansevere of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Said Rosenfels: "I haven't had one conversation with anybody in that building about what will happen."
New Detroit left guard Rob Sims will be the 15th player to start alongside left tackle Jeff Backus over the past nine years, writes John Niyo of the Detroit News.
After giving up a fifth-round pick in the Sims trade, it's hard to imagine the Lions giving up another pick for defensive lineman Anthony Hargrove, who signed his offer sheet with New Orleans on Monday.