We're Black and Blue All Over:
It's fair to wonder if the Green Bay Packers plan to part ways with defensive back Charles Woodson before next season. As we've discussed, Woodson will turn 37 in October. He is due to earn $10 million next season and would count the same amount against the salary cap. Except in the cases of quarterbacks, NFL teams rarely commit that sort of cash or cap space to players of Woodson's age.
The Packers' quarterback, Aaron Rodgers, would like to see an exception made. Rodgers made clear during his ESPN 540 radio show Tuesday that he thinks it would be a mistake to bid Woodson farewell. Rodgers said: "I don't think you get better by taking from the whole, taking a core guy. And I think he is a core guy." Rodgers added:
"I think it’s got to be one of the top priorities. I'm not sure what that’s going to look like, but I know he is under contract and that he is an important part of our football team, and I think he adds a lot. He is still playing at a really high level."
Under general manager Ted Thompson, the Packers have usually made the right decisions on when to part ways with aging veterans. (Receiver Donald Driver might be an exception.) We'll see if Thompson's evaluation lines up with Rodgers'.
Continuing around the NFC North:
Pete Dougherty of the Green Bay Press-Gazette speaks with former Packers place-kicker Chris Jacke, who will be inducted into the team's Hall of Fame this summer, about the evolution of accuracy at the position.
Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz declined comment at the Senior Bowl about a bizarre Twitter rant from receiver Titus Young, according to the Detroit News.
Veteran NFL coach Jim Washburn confirmed he will be joining the Lions' staff as a defensive assistant, according to Justin Rogers of Mlive.com. Washburn's son, Jeremiah, is the Lions' offensive line coach. He worked with Schwartz at the Tennessee Titans and coached current line coach Kris Kocurek there.
New Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Mel Tucker is known for getting the most out of his available talent, according to Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune.
Bears coach Marc Trestman has put together his staff in a different way than former coach Lovie Smith, notes Mark Potash of the Chicago Sun-Times.
The Bears hired Mike Clark as their new strength and conditioning coordinator, the team announced.
Sales of Trestman's biography have been brisk since he took the Bears' job, notes Charley Walters of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
The Star Tribune looks at the Minnesota Vikings' receiver position.
Vikings tight end Kyle Rudolph was a late add to the Pro Bowl to replace Tony Gonzalez, notes Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com.