NFC Notes: Bears, Lions, Packers, Vikings




  • NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero lists Packers OC Nathaniel Hackett as a head coaching candidate worth watching this coming cycle. He interviewed for the Falcons’ job last year, was recommended by Aaron Rodgers and Pelissero says his high-energy style connects well with players. 
  • Packers HC Matt LaFleur is hopeful that OT David Bakhtiari will be available for Week 11 and they are evaluating him “day-by-day” in practice: “I sure hope so. Again, it’s going to be a day-by-day process, and we’ll see where he’s at.” (Rob Demovsky)
  • LaFleur said they are hoping for DE Rashan Gary (elbow) to return “sooner than later” but feels fortunate that he avoided a serious injury: “Certainly we hope to get him back sooner than later, if it’s going out there with a brace or whatever it may be. But Rashan and I were actually taking about how fortunate we are it wasn’t serious.” (Wes Hodkiewicz)


  • The Athletic’s Chad Graff writes that the way the Vikings’ offensive line experienced little to no dropoff going from C Garrett Bradbury to C Mason Cole the past few weeks probably confirms Minnesota won’t pick up Bradbury’s fifth-year option. 
  • The Vikings have a number of veterans on one-year deals, including LB Anthony Barr, CB Patrick Peterson, CB Mackensie Alexander, CB Bashaud Breeland, S Xavier Woods, DT Sheldon Richardson, LB Nick Vigil and DE Everson Griffen. Graff thinks Minnesota will only be able to bring back three or four of that group. 
  • He adds Barr’s injury probably dilutes his market, so he could return. Graff expects Richardson to look elsewhere for more playing time and the Vikings to allow Woods to walk given they have fourth-round DB Camryn Bynum behind him. 
  • As for Vikings DE Danielle Hunter, Graff points out that finishing his second straight season on injured reserve hurts Hunter’s leverage for a major contract and could make it easier for the Vikings to work something out with him. 
  • Vikings HC Mike Zimmer doesn’t expect DT Michael Pierce‘s elbow injury to be season-ending but initially thought that he’d be able to return sooner. (Will Ragatz)
  • The Vikings brought in three players for workouts on Tuesday including WR Darrius Shepherd, WR Tommylee Lewis and RB Garrett Groshek (signed to PS). (Aaron Wilson)
  • Minnesota protected two practice squad players on Tuesday ahead of Week 11 including S Myles Dorn and CB Tye Smith. (Chris Tomasson)

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