Whispers from around the NFL

• OLT Bryant McKinnie and OLG Steve Hutchinson are finally beginning to show rapport up front for the Vikings and are playing off one another much better than they did early this season.

• The Texans believe MLB DeMeco Ryans is a strong candidate for Defensive Rookie of the Year. Ryans is the heart and soul of a Texans defense that has improved after a tough start to the season, and Ryan's ability to handle a lot of responsibility has played no small part.

• Recognizing the error of his ways far too late in the season, Cardinals head coach Dennis Green admitted early last week, we hear, that he should have plugged in Reggie Wells at right tackle a long time ago and forgotten about playing him at any other position on the line.