We're Black and Blue All Over:
Add another NFL player who is speaking out about Chicago Bears management.
We're in the midst of discussing the potential impact of unhappy running back Matt Forte and linebacker Lance Briggs. Wednesday, former Bears tight end Greg Olsen told ESPN 1000 that he wasn't happy with the way the team portrayed his role in this summer's trade to the Carolina Panthers. Here are some excerpts:
"I just felt that the way they approached it was, in my opinion, a little unprofessional. The night before the trade when they contacted me and I spoke to [general manager Jerry Angelo], we had a good healthy conversation and he laid out what they were thinking, that they were not going to invest that money in the position because of the offense and all those things that we all know.
"[He said] they were going to entertain trades. I said that's fine. I get that. I said, you know me I'm not one that goes out and speaks to the media. I'm not really a throw-guys-under-the-bus [kind of guy]. I respect that. I was nothing but professional. Then the day after the trade goes down he was the one saying that I was demanding [a trade in 2010]. I just thought that was a little uncalled for when all along I did nothing but play the good guy."
Olsen said he was "biting the bullet" for the entire 2010 season after the Bears' efforts to trade him to the New England Patriots fell through. He also joined the growing chorus of players to express surprise that the Bears haven't signed tailback Matt Forte to a contract extension, twice referring to it as "crazy."
"I think it's a little crazy that they won't reward their best player. Let's be honest, especially offensively he's been pretty much the whole offense. He singlehandedly beat us. He's a great kid. He works extremely hard as we all know in working out with him in the offseason. It's not a mystery why he's having such a good season. And it's not just one season. He's been like this since he was a rookie. He's come in and carried a heavy load under two different offensive coordinators and his play has just continued to get better.
"Those are the guys you want to see rewarded, the guys that do it the right way, the guys that aren't real flashy and don't really care about all the extra curricular stuff but just go out and play every week really hard. You've got to hope that they do the right thing but as we all know sometimes they make decisions that are a little crazy."
Continuing around the NFC North:
Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times looks at the running backs who will be involved in Monday night's game between the Bears and Philadelphia Eagles.
Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune considers the Bears' top needs in the 2012 draft among the topics in his weekly mailbag.
Tyler Dunne of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel traces the recovery from various injuries of Green Bay Packers linebacker Frank Zombo.
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers wants to reduce his role in taking sacks, writes Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
Packers backup quarterback Matt Flynn is not allowing his uncertain future to distract him, writes Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com.
The Detroit Lions haven't started contract negotiations with defensive end Cliff Avril, reports Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press.
A few years ago, that wouldn't have been a big deal, writes John Niyo of the Detroit News.
The Lions lead the NFL in turnover margin, notes Philip Zaroo of Mlive.com.
Minnesota Vikings stadium talks are officially "in limbo," writes Doug Belden of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
From the Star Tribune: "The day's events signaled that Republican lawmakers, despite mounting political pressure from the Vikings, are not convinced that the February expiration of the team's lease at the Metrodome is sufficient reason to rush into special session."