We're Black and Blue All Over:
Adrian Peterson rushed for 2,097 yards in 2012, the second-most in NFL history for a single season. So what number does he have in mind for 2013?
How about a cool 2,500?
"If you reach for the stars and fall short," Peterson said, "you're still there."
That's the goal Peterson mentioned during the Dan Patrick radio show this week, via Kevin Cusick of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. The figure would obliterate Eric Dickerson's single-season record of 2,105 yards.
We'll have to get our PetersonWatch post ready for Week 1 next season.
Continuing around the NFC North:
A contract escalator has doubled the 2013 base salary of Minnesota Vikings receiver Percy Harvin to $2.9 million, according to Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com. That could provide further incentive for the Vikings to extend his deal this offseason.
Mark Craig of the Star Tribune checks in with former Vikings left tackle Bryant McKinnie, now with the Baltimore Ravens.
Mike Vandermause of the Green Bay Press-Gazette: "Donald Driver won’t go down as the greatest wide receiver in Green Bay Packers history, but he very well could be the most popular. In 14 seasons with the Packers, Driver captured the hearts of fans with his fearless playing style, unprecedented production, infectious smile and humble roots."
Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Driver: "Retaining a 37-year-old player all season in what became by November the role of unused No. 5 wide receiver made no sense. It would have made far less sense for the brass to incur the wrath of their faithful followers, some of whom still believe Driver capable of starting, to cast him aside. The decision-makers made their exception because Driver is different. Always has been, always will be."
Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs hopes that Brian Urlacher returns to the team in 2013, writes Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times.
Briggs on playing in a new defense this season, via ESPNChicago.com: "Initially doubt goes through everybody's mind because as a defense we don't think there's anything wrong. There's nothing wrong with the defense so to make changes to something that there's nothing wrong with, the first thing that goes through your mind is you can only hurt it. But we're vets, and we understand this is a change and you have to stay positive about it and work through it. We brought in Mel Tucker [as defensive coordinator] ... I haven't spoken to any of these coaches yet but staying positive that things are going to work out."
Former Bears special-teams ace Corey Graham has proved he can play defense with the Ravens, writes Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune.
Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press has the story of Detroit Lions cornerback Lionel Smith's experience in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina.
ESPN analyst Trent Dilfer has no issues with the core mechanics of Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, writes Anwar S. Richardson of Mlive.com.