Corey Graham Improves, Robbie Gould Goes for Distance and More Favre

With Charles Tillman out for personal reasons Corey  Graham has seen a lot more quality playing time and has been the most impressive player at camp so far.

Training camp always includes a small group of players considered pleasant surprises. This summer Graham tops that list for the Bears. The fifth-round pick from 2007 has been playing left cornerback with the No. 1 defense, replacing starter Charles Tillman as the Bears allow Tillman time and space to address personal issues.

At 6 feet and 193 pounds, Graham fits the prototype of the ideal Cover-2 cornerback and has improved the way he uses his hands to impede a wide receiver's release. Graham is over the ankle injury that nagged him last year and his speed has been obvious as he stays in step with speedy receivers on deep patterns. His field awareness no longer looks like a weakness. And he has good hands

This camp coaches and kicker Robbie Gould have been working on the one thing that he has never been able to do...consistenly kick for touchbacks.

He had three touchbacks last season after recording 11 in 2006, but the Bears were still tops in the NFL in kickoff coverage at 19.3 yards per return. Gould's hang time always has been good -- at or just above four seconds -- and the Bears hope a change in mechanics will allow him to keep that while driving the ball farther.

Special-teams coordinator Dave Toub and assistant Chris Tabor worked with Gould this spring on lining up a little deeper and wider. So far, it has worked well.

''You are always looking to improve,'' said Gould, who cashed in with a $15.5 million contract extension in the offseason. ''You're kicking in Chicago. You're not going to have 27 touchbacks. It's just not going to happen.

''Would you like to see more? Absolutely. But at the same time, when you're kicking the ball over 4.0 [seconds] inside the 5 or deeper, and your guys are covering the ball inside the 20, that's just as good as a touchback.

''We changed up my approach, and we think it's going to help at least have more hang time and/or hit it a little deeper. I'm just trying to get more consistent with it.''

Seems the Packers are getting a bit desperate and may consider trading Brett Favre inside the division. 

A source close to the situation told the Journal Sentinel on Wednesday that the Packers were considering seeking a deal with one of their division rivals, most probably the Minnesota Vikings or Chicago Bears, if backed into a corner by the National Football League and public sentiment.

Of course their management denies that, so take it for what it is.  But if the Packers did make that decision I'd have to think they would opt for the Bears first.  Do you want to put Favre on a team that has a defense, a top 2 running back and a brand new deep threat?

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Windy City Gridiron

You must be a member of Windy City Gridiron to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Windy City Gridiron. You should read them.

Join Windy City Gridiron

You must be a member of Windy City Gridiron to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Windy City Gridiron. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker