NFC North Notes: Bears, Lions, Packers, Vikings

     

Bears

Bears HC Matt Nagy said he remains confident in K Eddy Pineiro after he missed two field goals in Week 11’s 17-7 loss to the Rams. 

“He’s competitive as hell. He wants to make that. He’s mad at himself. We know that. We want him to know that we’ve got confidence in him,” said Nagy, via Dan Wiederer

“That’s what we’re working through,” Nagy added. “So now, when we get back out there, he’s going to make them and we’re going to get rolling.”

  • ESPN’s Bill Barnwell says Bears RB Tarik Cohen is a strong extension candidate for Chicago as long as GM Ryan Pace is around. 

Lions

With Detroit’s playoff hopes all but mathematically eliminated, many believe the Lions should just place QB Matthew Stafford on injured reserve and give him the time he needs for the broken bones in his back to heal. A possible reason the team hasn’t already done that could be Stafford, who maintains if he’s healthy enough to play, that’s exactly what he will do. 

“Because this is what I do,” Stafford said via Tim Twentyman of the team’s official website. “I understand your question, but this is what I love to do. I love playing football. I appreciate all the hard work that all the guys in this locker room and in this organization put into going out there and trying to win games on Sunday and I love being a part of that.”

“I just know the work that I put into every season and I want to get as many chances as I can to play with these guys as I possibly can. That’s really just how I think about it. If I’m healthy enough to go play, I’m going to go play.”

Packers

  • ESPN’s Bill Barnwell identifies a potential contract standoff between the Packers and RB Aaron Jones, who will be entering the final year of his deal next year. 
  • Barnwell says Jones has been one of the most efficient backs in football but the Packers have still been reluctant to utilize him in a full-time, feature-back role. That could affect how much they’re willing to pay him versus what Jones could get on the open market. 

Vikings

  • ESPN’s Courtney Cronin notes that a playoff victory would likely put an extension firmly on the table for Vikings QB Kirk Cousins after this season. 
  • ESPN’s Bill Barnwell says that while the Vikings could sign RB Dalvin Cook to an extension this offseason, there’s more danger there given Cook’s injury history. 

 

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