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Cheese Curds: Green Bay Packers News and Links for January 13, 2014

The Packers' defense gets a long look in today's curds, including looks at a player hitting free agency, another who will give the team a tough decision on his contract, and a defense of the team's divisive defensive coordinator.

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Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Conference Championship week has arrived in the football world, but the Green Bay Packers are beginning to focus on free agency and the draft instead of playing football. As such, the news about the team is largely about players hitting free agency or in precarious contract positions, as the Packers' 20 players with expiring contracts will make this off-season an eventful one.

Mike Neal would prefer to stay in Green Bay - JSOnline
Hopefully if that happens and he sticks at outside linebacker, Mike Neal's play would get more consistent with a second year at the position.

Williams' late-season revival leaves Packers with tough choices in secondary | Packersnews
Many people will advocate cutting Tramon Williams for the salary cap benefits, but he was the most consistent player in the secondary over the second half of the season.

Mike Vandermause column: In defense of Dom Capers | Packersnews
Mike puts the blame for the defense's collapse on Ted Thompson instead of the embattled coordinator.

David Bakhtiari, Keenan Lewis violated NFL concussion protocol - ESPN
In case you missed this, Bakh shouldn't have been able to get back on the field after he suffered a concussion. He was not fined for it, however.

Five Surprising Players from the Packers' 2013 Season | Cheesehead TV
I'd argue that Bakhtiari deserves to be even higher on this list.

Saints vs. Seahawks ends with boneheaded Marques Colston forward pass -
This was probably the single most hilarious play in the NFL this weekend because of the sheer derpiness.

Let's take a moment to talk about Andrew Luck's beard -
Andrew Luck is Amish. He is a Civil War General. He needs to shave.