Around the NFC North

The Bears have been working out and trying to get more familiar with Mike Martz's offense. If the Lions are looking for linebacker help, there is one ready to join. And the Packers made a move in their personnel department. The lockout hasn't brought a complete standstill to news, speculation and analysis in the NFC North.


Chicago Bears

The Bears are a team that worked out together consistently even though it hasn't been talked about a lot.

Wide receiver Earl Bennett said the offense practiced four or five times a week to continue getting familiar with Mike Martz's offense.

Bennett said, "I feel like right now we're going through OTAs because we're going through plays, we're going through different defensive structures. We just don't have a defense over there against us. We're getting a lot of good work going on right now."

As for Bennett's developing role, Martz was quoted on the team website noting that Bennett has to become more involved in the offense.

"We didn't throw it to him enough," Martz said. "That will be remedied. He will figure in a much larger role than he did last year. He came to us late. He was injured. I wasn't really sure where he was with all the stuff. But he established himself as a guy who needs to get a lot more balls than he did.

"He's extremely reliable. I know (quarterback) Jay (Cutler) feels comfortable with him in the slot doing some of those things. But he should be able to play outside for us as well."

Bennett said he's ready to contribute in any way possible.

"If I get the opportunity, I just have to take advantage of it," he said. "I'm a team player. Any way I can help the team out, I'm willing to do it. I'm just look forward to having a great year as a team. We gotta get to that Super Bowl and win it."

Bennett also said Cutler has looked "awesome" following the knee injury he suffered in the NFC Championship Game.

"He's been out there throwing the ball well, moving around good. He's ready to go," Bennett said. "We know the type of player Jay is. We just look forward to this year because we know he going to have a great year."


Detroit Lions

Linebacker Keith Bulluck will be a free agent when the lockout ends, and he named three teams he would consider joining: The New York Giants, Detroit Lions and New England Patriots.

Bulluck played 10 seasons with the Tennessee Titans before signing with the Giants last season. He played 13 games, and started eight, and said he will only continue playing if he's an every-down participant.

"(A full-time role) is the only way I'm playing football next year," Bullock said previously in the offseason. "This (2010) is the first time I've ever, since my rookie year and my second year in the league, come on and off the field. I'm someone that needs to be on the field all the time. That's just how I feel, so yeah, that's the only way I'd play football next year."

His reasons for singling out those three teams is:

"First and foremost, New York because they gave me an opportunity to come and continue my career, really get healthy, where I needed to be," Bulluck said on SiriusXM Radio. "Detroit. I like what (coach Jim) Schwartz is doing up there. Last year, I wasn't prepared physically to play and do the things that they would need me to do, but now I feel I am. New England is always veteran-friendly, and I know, every year, they're in contention of winning.

"Like I say, I want to win, really. At this point in my career, financially, me and my family are fine. But I definitely would like to be in a position to play myself into maybe possibly being one of the top-paid linebackers in the league again. Definitely one of the top players in the league."

Schwartz was his defensive coordinator in Tennessee, and Bulluck said he can see similarities between the Titans of tghen and the Lions of now.

He said, "In Tennessee, we always had horses up front. We had (Albert) Haynesworth, and we had Tony Brown, Robaire Smith, a plethora of guys that will get it done. Now they have two big first-rounders (Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley), and with Kyle (Vanden Bosch) up front, I know his veteran leadership is definitely going to have his D-line in order. For them to be taking up double teams and have the linebackers run sideline to sideline, I think that's very important."

Bulluck said he loves Schwartz's "desire to win."

He said, "I remember one year, I think it was his first year as a coordinator, we got beat real bad in Minnesota, and the look that he had on his face, he felt like he let down like the whole state of Tennessee. And some of our losses, when our defense didn't play so well, I can see it in his eyes.

"As a football player or as an athlete, you can look into a competitor's eyes and see what's going on, at some point, and I know that he's definitely a competitor. He worked his way up to be one of the top coordinators, and now he's trying to be one of the top head coaches, rightfully so. Someone like Schwartz ... he's going to give it his all, so it makes the players want to give it their all."


Green Bay Packers

The Packers recently named Eliot Wolf as their assistant director of player personnel.

Wolf has spent seven seasons with the organization, including the past three as assistant director of pro personnel. He was a pro personnel assistant his first four seasons.

Wolf has worked with scouting teams during the season and has been involved with college scouting during the offseason.

"Eliot is an important part of our personnel staff," general manager Ted Thompson said. "Over the years, his responsibilities and duties have continued to grow. His contributions to our efforts in pro scouting have been tremendous, and he has taken on more in the college scouting and draft preparations. We believe this adjustment is an appropriate recognition of his continued growth within our personnel group."


Viking Update Top Stories

\r\n\r\n","mobileBody":" The Bears are a team that worked out together consistently even though it hasn't been talked about a lot. Wide receiver Earl Bennett said the offense practiced four or five times a week to continue getting familiar with Mike Martz's offense. Bennett said, \"I feel like right now we're going through OTAs because we're going through plays, we're going through different defensive structures. We just don't have a defense over there against us. We're getting a lot of good work going on right now.\" As for Bennett's developing role, Martz was quoted on the team website noting that Bennett has to become more involved in the offense. \"We didn't throw it to him enough,\" Martz said. \"That will be remedied. He will figure in a much larger role than he did last year. He came to us late. He was injured. I wasn't really sure where he was with all the stuff. But he established himself as a guy who needs to get a lot more balls than he did. \"He's extremely reliable. I know (quarterback) Jay (Cutler) feels comfortable with him in the slot doing some of those things. But he should be able to play outside for us as well.\" Bennett said he's ready to contribute in any way possible. \"If I get the opportunity, I just have to take advantage of it,\" he said. \"I'm a team player. Any way I can help the team out, I'm willing to do it. I'm just look forward to having a great year as a team. We gotta get to that Super Bowl and win it.\" Bennett also said Cutler has looked \"awesome\" following the knee injury he suffered in the NFC Championship Game. \"He's been out there throwing the ball well, moving around good. He's ready to go,\" Bennett said. \"We know the type of player Jay is. We just look forward to this year because we know he going to have a great year.\" Linebacker Keith Bulluck will be a free agent when the lockout ends, and he named three teams he would consider joining: The New York Giants, Detroit Lions and New England Patriots. Bulluck played 10 seasons with the Tennessee Titans before signing with the Giants last season. He played 13 games, and started eight, and said he will only continue playing if he's an every-down participant. \"(A full-time role) is the only way I'm playing football next year,\" Bullock said previously in the offseason. \"This (2010) is the first time I've ever, since my rookie year and my second year in the league, come on and off the field. I'm someone that needs to be on the field all the time. That's just how I feel, so yeah, that's the only way I'd play football next year.\" His reasons for singling out those three teams is: \"First and foremost, New York because they gave me an opportunity to come and continue my career, really get healthy, where I needed to be,\" Bulluck said on SiriusXM Radio. \"Detroit. I like what (coach Jim) Schwartz is doing up there. Last year, I wasn't prepared physically to play and do the things that they would need me to do, but now I feel I am. New England is always veteran-friendly, and I know, every year, they're in contention of winning. \"Like I say, I want to win, really. At this point in my career, financially, me and my family are fine. But I definitely would like to be in a position to play myself into maybe possibly being one of the top-paid linebackers in the league again. Definitely one of the top players in the league.\" Schwartz was his defensive coordinator in Tennessee, and Bulluck said he can see similarities between the Titans of tghen and the Lions of now. He said, \"In Tennessee, we always had horses up front. We had (Albert) Haynesworth, and we had Tony Brown, Robaire Smith, a plethora of guys that will get it done. Now they have two big first-rounders (Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley), and with Kyle (Vanden Bosch) up front, I know his veteran leadership is definitely going to have his D-line in order. 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