Updated: August 21, 2003, 11:39 AM ETBy By Darrell Trimble | ESPN Insider
Chicago Bears: LB Brian Urlacher struggled at times last year when DT Ted Washington wasn't around to occupy two offensive linemen, so it shouldn't be surprised that he isn't exactly thrilled that Washington is no longer a member of the team. "I don't have anything to say, no comment," Urlacher told the Chicago Tribune, refusing to share his feelings on the trade that sent Washington to New England. Later in the day, Urlacher declined two more requests for his reaction to Washington's departure. C Olin Kreutz also declined interview requests. But Urlacher is the one player that will feel Washington's loss more than anyone else. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: After not kicking a football for 13 days because of nagging groin and hamstring pain, K Martin Gramatica was back on the practice field Wednesday booting balls through the uprights. Gramatica didn't attempt a field goal of more than 40 yards, but he kicked without pain and declared himself ready to play in a game. "The way the ball went I probably could have made it from about 50 yards,'' Gramatica said of his field goal tries. ``But I didn't want to overkick. I just want to keep it right there for now. The real question is how will I feel [this] morning." Green Bay Packers: When the club signed DE Joe Johnson to a six-year, $33 million free agent contract with $6.5 million in guarantees, they expected to see Johnson dominate like he did in New Orleans. But the only thing Johnson has dominated in Green Bay is the injury list. Johnson played in just five games last year when he tore his triceps against the Bears and this offseason he's participated in only 11 days of training because of thigh and rib injuries. He returned from a case of sore ribs this week, but he is not taking part in one-on-one pass rush drills or an extensive amount of contact. "I wouldn't be telling the truth if I said I wasn't concerned about it," coach Mike Sherman told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "I think he's fairly healthy. He had a little rib thing going there. That seems to have cleared up. Hopefully, we can keep him on the field." If Johnson can't shake the injury bug and produce on the field, he will become one of the biggest free-agent busts in recent memory.