Keeping Colvin

The <!--Default NodeId For Rosevelt Colvin is 292196,2002--><A HREF=[PlayerNode:292196]>Rosevelt Colvin</A> issue is one unlikely to be resolved until after free agents start signing. It's lingered so long already, why shouldn't it linger longer? He turned down a five-year, $13 million deal and wants $20 million or more.

It could be much the same scenario as last year when the Chicago Bears had to outbid Miami to keep center Olin Kreutz. The Bears drew their battle lines in this one long ago.

``For the record, it's not like I just made this address and said `OK, I'm just now going to go out into the market,' '' Colvin said. ``Like I said the whole way, the ball is in their court. If they want to get it done, we can get it done.''

The Bears may not want to get into a big bidding war for Colvin like the one for Kreutz. Coach Dick Jauron did not classify Colvin an elite, superstar type.

``Rosey doesn't have, maybe, great straight-line speed, for example,'' Jauron said. ``But he's got good speed and he's got as good a feel for the game, I think, as anybody pass rush-wise, a feel for how to do it, great hands, great toughness and he loves to play. A very, very smart football player and obviously talented.

``But maybe not gifted by NFL standards.''

The leverage Angelo has in Colvin's case goes beyond his own roster. The Bears have the fourth pick in the draft, which would likely let them select Arizona State's record-setting pass rusher Terrell Suggs. They already have Bryan Knight and Mike Caldwell as possible replacements for Colvin at linebacker.

Linebackers and pass rush specialists look to be rather plentiful in the unrestricted market, which could drive down Colvin's value or present the Bears alternatives.

Both Takeo Spikes of Cincinnati and Chris Claiborne of Detroit are unrestricted free agents. Claiborne was in the middle last year, but has been an outside linebacker.

Another available outside linebacker available includes the brother of Bears running back Adrian Peterson, Indianapolis' Mike Peterson.

If the Bears wanted to get into a bidding war for a superstar pass rusher, and didn't mind bringing in someone who created bad feeling here in the past, they could pursue Jim Miller antagonist Hugh Douglas of Philadelphia. Considering the impact Simeon Rice made on Tampa Bay's defense, an available unrestricted pass rusher like Douglas should command big money, although he'll be 32 years old by opening day.

Other pass rushers in the unrestricted market include Green Bay end Vonnie Holliday, former Bear John Thierry and Minnesota's Talance Sawyer. The Bears could cause problems for a rival by pursuing Green Bay restricted free agent end Kabeer-Gbaja-Biamila, but success would likely cost them a couple draft picks.

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