When the Bears released veteran defensive lineman Jeremiah Ratliff last week, details began to trickle out about an eruption from Ratliff that led to the move — and led to the Bears temporarily increasing the security at their team facility. Although that incident led to Ratliff’s release, it wasn’t his first such outburst, as Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report details.
According to Freeman, in the last week of the 2014 season, Ratliff showed up at a Bears practice and behaved “belligerently” toward players and coaches, leading to him being asked to leave practice multiple times. The incident sounds awfully similar to what happened at Halas Hall last week, but in 2014, head coach Marc Trestman not only didn’t discipline Ratliff — he named the defensive lineman a team captain for the coming week.
Per Freeman, the decision to reward Ratliff for the outburst may have cost Trestman the locker room, and it wasn’t long until the head coach was replaced. Under new coach John Fox, the Bears didn’t tolerate a similar display from Ratliff this season.
Let’s round up a few more odds and ends from across the NFC….
- Encouraging Ratliff’s so-called “passion” last year didn’t work out well for Trestman — will taking a similar approach to Greg Hardy play out any better for Cowboys owner Jerry Jones? David Fleming of ESPN is skeptical, calling Jones’ support of Hardy the latest sign of dysfunction in Dallas.
- Vincent Jackson‘s knee injury is expected to sideline him for multiple weeks, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link). However, Rapoport adds that the injury won’t be a season-ender for the Buccaneers receiver.
- With the 49ers rapidly falling out of contention, and next Tuesday’s trade deadline looming, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk wonders if San Francisco would consider trading Anquan Boldin, and whether or not Boldin would welcome a trade to a contender. I wouldn’t expect the Niners to make a move involving the veteran wideout, but if they do, the Panthers would be one destination that makes some sense, as Florio observes.
- While general manager Martin Mayhew has been aggressive in the past, Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com (video link) doesn’t expect the Lions to acquire any veterans before this year’s trade deadline. If Mayhew and the Lions make any deals, they’ll probably be for draft picks, says Rothstein.