BBAO: Bears open first minicamp today

We're Black and Blue All Over:

The Chicago Bears will become the first NFC North team on the field this offseason when a voluntary three-day minicamp begins Tuesday at Halas Hall. The team is scheduled for three two-hour practices, one a day through Thursday, to give new coach Marc Trestman and his staff a preview of the roster before the draft takes place next week.

Under NFL rules, new coaches are permitted this second minicamp, in addition to the traditional mandatory one that the Bears will hold June 11-13. Trestman told the Bears' website that the practices will be "a hard-working environment, but a tempered environment being that they're really not in training camp condition and we want to be very mindful of their safety over the three days."

Coaches plan to lay a "foundation" of the team's new schemes in anticipation of organized team activities (OTAs) that begin May 13, Trestman said. If nothing else, this week's camp will allow team officials to make a more informed judgment about roster needs before the draft and college free agency.

Continuing around the NFC North: