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Mark Craig's Northern Intelligence

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG
  • Star Tribune
  • October 5, 2013 - 4:18 PM

NORTHERN INTELLIGENCE

If you’re a fan of elite tight ends, keep an eye on Soldier Field on Sunday. The Saints’ Jimmy Graham just became the first tight end since 1986 to earn a conference player of the month award. He has 27 catches for 458 yards and six touchdowns. Chicago’s Martellus Bennett, the Viking slayer in Week 2, has 20 catches for 225 yards and three touchdowns. Bennett, who has more blocking duties than Graham, wasn’t interested in comparisons this week. “There’s no wrong way to make an impact,” he told reporters. “There’s no wrong way to eat a Reese’s.”

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Detroit as a desired destination just sounds strange. But that’s exactly what it was for Kevin Ogletree this week. Released Tuesday from the dysfunction that is 0-4 Tampa Bay, the veteran receiver landed in 3-1 Detroit a day later. “Who doesn’t want to go play with Calvin Johnson and Matt Stafford and Reggie Bush? It’s a perfect opportunity,” said Ogletree, who caught eight passes for 70 yards and a touchdown in the Buccaneers’ first four games. With Nate Burleson and Patrick Edwards injured, Ogletree should play Sunday.

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No, Green Bay hasn’t returned to the days of Lombardi’s Packers’ Sweep. But the Packers are averaging 5.3 yards per carry, second best in the league. And after 44 consecutive regular-season games without a 100-yard rusher, they enter Sunday’s game against the Lions with a two-game streak of 100-yard rushers. A year ago, the Packers averaged only 3.9 yards per carry.

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