Chicago Bears Free Agency Analysis and Predictions

NFL: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New York Giants

Well, that escalated quickly.

GM Phil Emery followed up his amazing opening act last season with an equally impressive performance in the first few hours of this year’s free agency period.

About 60 minutes after the opening bell, former Giants tight end Martellus Bennett was watching the ink dry on his new four-year deal with the Bears. The terms of Bennett’s contract have not yet been disclosed.

A few hours later, ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirmed that former Saints Pro Bowl left tackle Jermon Bushrod would be joining Bennett in the Windy City on a five-year, $36 million deal, making him the highest paid offensive lineman in team history. [Read more…]

Michigan Wolverines’ Woolfolk and the psychology of pass defense

You’ve heard the “voice of God” in those old NFL Films clips. That ultra-deep, ludicrously over-dramatic and mortally serious narrating by the late, great John Facenda:

for the Autumn wind is a Raider, pillaging just for fun. He’ll knock you ’round and upside down. And laugh when he’s conquered and won.

My favorite Facenda prose describes the island duel between wide receiver and defensive back, in which no quarter is asked, nor expected. And “the loser bleeds alone on an empty field.”

There’s a reason wide receivers are typically the most outwardly brash, and overt showmen of the gridiron. Likewise, there’s a reason defensive backs are usually the most mentally astute on the field. The WR-DB clash is as much a mental and psychological confrontation as it is physical one.

I’ll let Michigan Wolverines star CB-S Troy Woolfolk, a DB with All-Big Ten and NFL Draft written all over him, explain the brains behind the brawn.

By Paul M. Banks

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