We're Black and Blue All Over:
PHOENIX -- It's rare when an NFL player re-signs with a team that cut him for financial reasons. Those business issues, as well as hurt feelings, don't usually dissipate quickly enough to foster a re-connection.
That's why most of us aren't expecting the Minnesota Vikings to re-sign cornerback Antoine Winfield, whom the team released last week rather than pay him a $7.25 million base salary. But as Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com points out, Vikings coach Leslie Frazier is hoping Winfield proves the exception to that unwritten rule.
In town for the NFL owners meeting, Frazier told Pelissero that he has spoken to Winfield abut the situation and added: "I'm hoping that we can figure out a way to get him back here. So, I'm hoping that it's not goodbye yet."
The market has fallen for free agent cornerbacks in recent days and many are settling for one-year contracts. Winfield reportedly has received several calls of interest but he will be 36 when the season begins. We'll see where it goes.
Continuing around the NFC North as the meeting officially opens:
Frazier appears to be planning on having a rookie middle linebacker this season, notes Pelissero.
The Detroit Lions' heavy lifting is done in free agency, but not their work this offseason, writes Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press.
Lions general manager Martin Mayhew has made all the right decisions so far this offseason, writes Anwar S. Richardson of Mlive.com.
It's "crazy talk" to criticize Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford for not yet agreeing on a contract extension to lower his salary cap number, writes Chris McCosky of the Detroit News.
Dan Pompei of the Chicago Tribune had a Q&A at the NFL owners meeting with Bears chairman George McCaskey.
Over the weekend, the Bears agreed to terms with cornerback/special teams ace Zack Bowman on a one-year contract, notes Jeff Dickerson of ESPNChicago.com.
Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson hasn't wavered from his philosophy of building through the draft, writes Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
On the other hand, Thompson said: "A person in my position, you can't be so afraid of that or so concerned about not having a bad deal sometimes that you become comatose and don't do anything," More from Rob Demovsky of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.
Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com considers the Packers' needs at running back, especially given reported interest in free agent Ahmad Bradshaw.