Would that there is a preseason ...

Even in a normal offseason, partial preseason schedules don't move the meter much for me. During a lockout which would have to be lifted in order for said preseason games to take place, I'm tempted to ignore them altogether.

So as a compromise, I'll offer a few nuggets from the NFC North games announced Tuesday. We've got exact dates and times for the handful of national preseason games, and opponents only for the rest.

  • The Chicago Bears would participate in the Aug. 7 Hall of Fame game against the St. Louis Rams, which would take place a day after defensive end Richard Dent is inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Under normal circumstances, that means the Bears would open training camp a week earlier than normal at Olivet Nazarene University. The game would be televised by NBC.

  • The Bears would have a second nationally televised preseason game, Aug. 22 at the New York Giants. ESPN would handle that broadcast.

  • The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions would have one nationally televised game apiece, both in their third preseason week. The Packers would be seen Aug. 26 on CBS at the Indianapolis Colts, while the Lions would host the New England Patriots the following night.

  • The Minnesota Vikings would play their first two preseason games on the road to ensure maximum time for the $18 million project to repair the Metrodome roof.

  • The use of "would" throughout this post is intentional and, I believe, an example of the subjunctive mood. I'm sure grammarians would correct me if necessary.