Peep Show

Updated: March 26, 2004, 11:52 AM ET
By By Darrell Trimble | ESPN Insider
Chicago Bears: Coach Lovie Smith has stressed the importance of increasing his team speed, and Thursday saw him bring in one of the fastest linebackers left on the free agent market -- Ian Gold. Gold, who arrived in town Thursday and took a physical. According to the Chicago Sun-Times he will to stop by the practice field while he tours Halas Hall today. The only reason that Gold is still available is because he tore his ACL before the midway point last season. Should Gold sign it likely would mean that LB Lance Briggs would stay on the strong side instead of moving across the field to take the spot of departed weakside linebacker Warrick Holdman.

Buffalo Bills: OG Bobbie Williams is excited about joining the team and vying for the AFC East crown. The only problem is that the Bills have yet to offer him a contract. The four-year vet visited the Bills Thursday and he left no doubt that this is where he wants to be. "It looks pretty good," Williams told the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, referring to the team and the facilities. "We'll see how it plays out, but I'm glad to be in Buffalo." The 6-foot-3, 320-pounder has also visited Miami and Cincinnati and he has no other visits planned. Right now, Buffalo is in the lead, and one of the primary reasons is the chance to work under respected offensive line coach Jim McNally. "It would be a great pleasure because he is truly a master of the game," said Williams. "He can take my level and my ability to another level. It's all about just getting better and I can definitely get better with him."

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: QB Brad Johnson led his team to a world championship two years ago, but last year he struggled down the stretch. So the Bucs went on a very public search this offseason for another quarterback to challenge Johnson, but the 35-year-old passer doesn't seem insulted or concerned. "Every year that I've been in football it's been a new system, a new coach, a new coordinator, new players; that's just the way it is,'' Johnson told the Tampa Tribune. "You just take care of yourself because nothing's ever guaranteed." Perhaps he feels so confident in his role at the starting quarterback because coach Jon Gruden continues to view him as his No. 1 guy. "Brad knows he's our starting quarterback and our team captain," Gruden said, even though he picked up QB Brian Griese. "But he also knows that my job is to get as many good players at that position as we can. I'm not going to apologize for doing my job here. I mean, everybody in the league right now is trying to get the best group of quarterbacks they can get. That's all we're doing."