Around the NFC North: Making Fun of the Bears, Lions and Vikings

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NFC North DivisionIt’s free agency time in the NFL, also known as the the perfect opportunity for Packers fans to take a nap for two weeks.

Sure, it’s been mildly entertaining trying to figure out if the Packers did, or did not, sign Steven Jackson. And it’s been somewhat amusing following Greg Jennings and his mysterious tweets as he navigates the free agency waters, possibly back to the Packers.

But none of those things bring as much joy to my heart as mocking and ridiculing the Packers NFC North opponents for their offseason signings, roster cuts and trades.

Minnesota Vikings
The Vikings traded Percy Harvin to Seattle for a first round draft pick and a couple other draft picks. They also cut veteran defensive back Antoine Winfield and resigned right tackle Phil Loadholt.

Isn’t it cute how Vikings general manager Rick Spielman is trying to act like Ted Thompson? Suddenly the Vikings are all about the draft and getting younger.

Let’s see how long Spielman is able to stick with this philosophy. Remember that the Vikings quarterback is Christian Ponder and owner Zygi Wilf has a new stadium opening in a couple years that he’ll want filled to capacity with drooling rubes in helga horns and goldilocks braids.

What if Ponder continues to stink and the Vikings take a step backward? Is Wilf patient enough to give Spielman enough of a leash and allow this draft and develop philosphy to take shape?

I doubt it.

You know what’s going to be awesome? Watching the Vikings spend the first-rounder they got for Harvin on the next Troy Williamson.

UPDATE: The Vikings signed Matt Cassel after I wrote this, so you know what else is going to be awesome? Hearing those drooling rubes in helga horns and goldilocks braids chanting Cassel’s name after Ponder goes 7-for-16 for 49 yards with two interceptions in the first half of Minnesota’s season opener.

Chicago Bears
The Bears signed left tackle Jermon Bushrod and tight end Martellus Bennett. The futures of Brian Urlacher and Israel Idonje remain up in the air.

Pro Football Focus ranked Bushrod 24th among left tackles who started at least 10 games at the position in 2012. Bushrod got a pass blocking rating of     -3.5. For comparison, the Packers Marshall Newhouse got a 5.2.

Does Bushrod sound like a guy who should be given a $35 million contract and annointed the savior of your offensive line? It does if you’re the Bears!

Bennett is a different story. I think he’s an excellent all-around tight end. Too bad he won’t get many balls thrown his way with Jay Cutler constantly on the ground and throwing tantrums.

Detroit Lions
The Lions signed running back Reggie Bush and safety Glover Quinn. They also added defensive lineman Jason Jones and resigned corner Chris Houston.

Packers guard T.J. Lang is ready to make hats and T-shirts for the Lions offseason NFC North title. Maybe he should also make shotguns and ear protection. Since the Lions apparently have the division wrapped up in March, coach Jim Schwartz might just skip training camp and take his team skeet shooting instead.

The Lions could sign any free agent they want, trade for Tom Brady and bring back Chris Spielman in his prime. As long as Schwartz and his fake tough-guy act are in charge, I’m not too worried.

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Adam Czech is a freelance reporter and a Packers fan living in the Twin Cities. Follow Adam on Twitter. Read more of Adam's writing on the Packers here.

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  • steve cheez

    Well played, young man.

  • Savage57

    Nice article, but next time can you heap more abuse on the Queens? It is such a target rich environment over there and they keep providing so many opportunities.

    Maybe later today, when they sign Jennings, OK?

    • Oppy

      Maybe later today, when they THINK they’ve signed Jennings (Look, Greg! Not only are we paying more.. But you want a QB? WE GOT YOU MATT CASSEL!), and he resigns with the Packers anyways.

      That would be nice.

      • Adam Czech

        Didn’t Jennings sell his house in Green Bay? Where would he live if he came back to the Packers? With Rodgers? What if Jennings’ sister wanted to come over for dinner?

        That would be awkward.

        • Dobber

          He might rent a room from Javon Walker.

        • Oppy

          Nice!

        • morgan mundane

          Jennings put his house up for sale before the season ended so he already made up his mind and made plans to go elsewhere.
          He know’s cheap.

          • Mudduckcheesehead

            Nice handle, man. I love seeing how many posters either live here in Minny or have some connection.

      • Oppy

        Ugh, so much for that.

    • morgan mundane

      Used to hate the Vikes deeply. But over time had to admit, wow they sure know how to build a team and stay competitive. I think the.ve only had like 3 losing seasons in 40 years. And I suffered with the Lions for almost that long.
      But let’s be honest. That front office know’s it stuff. Other than that horrible trade for Herschel baby, they’ve done well. Adrian Pederson, 5th round pick. Got Antwoin Windfield in his prime. Randy Moss. What a steel. Robert Smith.
      The bottom line, if they needed a pass rusher they got him one way to the other . Ditto a running back.
      Unlike TT, there not trying to get by with scrubs like always hurt Benson, had part of one good season Starks, and I will find myself soon Perry.
      They know talent and they know when to unload those who are unproductive – hint A J Hawk 2010-2012.

      Sorry to say but TT has screwed up this team so bad this year they will be lucky to only be at the bottom of the NFC North.

      • Mudduckcheesehead

        Oops. Guess I spoke too soon about the handle. Eek.

        You should have stuck with hating the Vikes deeply – it’s a much sounder long term strategy.

      • Oppy

        I’ve got to admit, the Vikings front office really does know how to pull it all together and go out and get the pieces the need, and they don’t hesitate to do it.

        Now if they could figure out how to obtain some hardware to put into that display case. They just can’t seem to win when it counts.. I guess that’s the rub.

        Get outta here, you purple troll!
        See you next season. It’s not going to look good for you guys.

  • Dobber

    “Hearing those drooling rubes in helga horns and goldilocks braids chanting Cassel’s name after Ponder goes 7-for-16 for 49 yards with two interceptions in the first half of Minnesota’s season opener.”–Yeah, but they’ll win 17-14 because AP will bust loose for 180 yards and two scores. It’s amazing what a guy like that will do for a team…

    • Adam Czech

      Very true, Dobber. AP is already an all-time great RB. But if he even comes close to repeating what he did in 2012, we’ll have to start the is he the greatest of all time discussion.

  • Bearmeat

    Bennett is NOT a great TE. He’s dumber than JMike, and even less consistent. Bears WAY overpaid.

    • Dobber

      Bennett can be a good in-line blocker, though, and that might help the line’s performance in general.

      A lot of money for a blocker…

  • Dobber

    “Watching the Vikings spend the first-rounder they got for Harvin on the next Troy Williamson.”

    …or watching the Bears draft the next Curtis Enis.

    • morgan mundane

      Or watching the Vikes get two of the top receivers in the draft – they have two first round picks and 3 of the first 53 picks in all, plus throw in Jennings, you know he will sign with them to rub it in our faces, and they are set pretty well.
      Just how do we improve all our needs with our whopping 7 late round picks?

  • Dobber

    It would be poetic justice if Urlacher signed with the Packers at the vet. minimum AND stayed healthy for a whole year.

    • Dobber

      I only posted that because all the “dislikes” tell us we have a troll…probably a Bears fan.

      • PissedoffinAZ

        yeah, but it’s worthy of a thumbs up Dobber. Wouldn’t mind seeing Urlacher in green and gold, maybe with a little blood-red mixed in now and then.

  • GBPDAN

    Looks like TT is about to lock up our FA François. …yeah!!! Go Ted, im excited. Moves like this are on par with SF and Seattle and will put us over the edge.

  • morgan mundane

    Read your article and assumed you were drunk when you wrote it or just totally unknowledgeable about what’s going on.
    First, it was the Vikes who you trashed for not knowing what they are doing but their top three picks last year all made the pro bowl. Are top three barely made a handful of good plays, ended up injured and basically did nothing to help the team.
    The Lions picked up 4 very good players to fill needed gaps, and oh, they still have the 5th pick and 34th pick in the draft and will get a top notch DE to work with Suh and Farely to Rush the crap out of Rogers. Its hard to throw a ball from your back.
    The Bears did a few things to help themselves so far so lets concentrate on the Pack.
    No free agents and only 7 late round picks. No money to spend in FA like other teams and we probably lose: Jennings, Jones, Findley, Hawk, EDS, Sheilds, have lost Walden, Woodson, Zombo, Crabtree.
    Now either I’ve been drinking but I think the NFC North should be laughing but at us not with us.

    • Adam Czech

      Well said, Morgan. It’s probably time that the Packers just locked the doors at Lambeau Field and folded the franchise.

      Perhaps Green Bay could attract an MLS team to play at Lambeau. I bet that team owner would sign all kinds of free agents that lead to offseason championships.

    • Stroh

      Bears got a LT that is worse than Newhouse and a TE thats been dumped by 2 teams now. Thats not really helping alot..

      Lions always spend in FA and always tread water or worse. Let them do what they want. Just replacing overpaid FA w/ more overpaid FA. Thats called standing still.

      Vikes also used a very high draft pick on Ponder and now just signed Cassell. They aren’t going anywhere w/ either. Got as far as was humanly possible last year due to an inhuman effort by Peterson. Problem is his shelf life is winding down. Maybe 2, at most 3 good years left before he’s done.

      Vikes and bears got GM’s who want to do it the Thompson way, except they aren’t nearly as good at it and still overpay for overhyped FA.

      Its not that hard to find starters in rds 1 and 2 when the talent on the team sucks. Lets not pat the vikes on the back. Still well behind the Packers!

  • Ron LC

    Hawk restructured today and took a pay cut.