In Football terminology, “B Team” usually comes with a negative connotation. Many high school freshman football players relegated to this team do so with a sour face and a poor attitude. They only see it as playing with less seasoned players and as a demotion. Overlooking the fact that they’ll gain valuable in game experience if they in fact wish to continue playing football.
This Chicago Bears All Time “B” Team is much different than the team described above, this “B” Team has a little bit of everything.
Since it’s the Bears were talking about I’ll start with the defense;
MLB – Dick Butkus (1965-73) - Hall of Famer, 8 time Pro Bowler, 2 time Defensive Player of the Year, simply the greatest middle linebacker of all time.
OLB – Lance Briggs (2003-present) - A perfect fit for the weak side in the Tampa 2, but make no mistake, Briggs would thrive in any system. Elected to 4 straight Pro Bowls, 2005-08.
OLB – Doug Buffone (1966-79) - A member of my Bears All Time Team that I put together last year. Buffone was a solid all around linebacker, equally adept against the pass and run. He was a team captain for 8 straight years.
DE – Alex Brown (2002-present) - A career so far with 37.5 sacks, 5 ints, 15 forced fumbles, 35 passes defended, and a new defensive line coach sure to push him to his best season yet in '09.
DT – Bill Bishop (1952-60) - Elected to the 1954 Pro Bowl. The 6'4" 248 pound Texan played 107 games for Chicago.
DT – Alfonso Boone (2001-06) - 18 starts in his 83 career games as a Bear, but he was in the DT rotation every year.
DE – Ray Bray (1939-42, 46) - Three years in the Navy are probably all that kept Bray out of the Hall Of Fame. A member of the All Decade Team 1940's, a 2 time All Pro, and a 3 time World Champ, including the 73-0 shellacking of the Redskins in 1940.
CB – James Burton (1994-97) - James had 7 spot starts in his brief Bears career, all under the watchful eye of Head Coach Dave Wannstedt. Bonus points for enduring the Wanny years.
CB – Erich Barnes (1958-60) - An aggressive, hard nosed (some say dirty), physical, intimidating, defensive back that played 14 years in the NFL. Erich was a Bears Pro Bowler in '58, a 4 time Pro Bowler as a Giant, and 1 more as a Brown.
FS – Mike Brown (2000-08 ) - Arguably one of the most popular Bears in the last 25 years. Named 1st team All Pro in '01, but was named to his only Pro Bowl in '05. Injuries derailed his Bears career, but Mike Brown will always be remembered fondly in Chicago.
SS – Todd Bell - (1981-84, 86-87) - Named to the 1984 Pro Bowl then held out all of '85, missing Super Bowl XX. Bell was one of the hardest hitters of his day.
P - Ed Brown (1954-61) - Brown gets the slight nod over another punting "B", Maury Buford. Buford and Brown are 4th and 5th respectively, in total punts and total yards. Buford even holds a slight edge over Brown in yards per punt, by a .2 margin. But I'm giving the edge to Brown, due to his versatility. He has a FG and XP made in his career and he also leads my "B" team offense...
And the Offense;
QB – Ed Brown (1954-61) - Besides being the Bears punter for 8 years, Brown also piled up a 41-25-2 as the Bears starting QB, playing in 2 Pro Bowls along the way. He's played the 2nd most games at QB for Chicago, and his 9,698 passing yards place him 6th.
HB – Cedric Benson (2005-07) - His 1,593 rushing yards were just too much for me to pass on Benson. I would have loved to go with Edgar Bennett and his 639 yards, but I gotta stay true to the "B" team.
FB – Ronnie Bull (1962-70) - Benson wouldn't get much action on this team with Ronnie Bull around. He's 10th All Time with 2,871 rushing yards and he added 163 receptions during his Bears career. He even threw for 142 yards and returned kicks for another 384 yards.
WR – Marty Booker (1999-03, 08 ) - Booker is tied for 3rd in receptions all time for Chicago and 6th in receiving yards. While his last year wasn't much to speak of he did play his way into a Pro Bowl in 2002.
WR – Bernard Berrian (2004-07) - Berrian started 32 games in his 4 years as a Bear. Snagging 150 balls for 2,197 yards with 13 TD along the way.
TE – Cap Boso - (1987-91) - Boso was a fan favorite during his time in Chicago, with his most memorable moment being the overtime TD grab in '91 when he came up with a clod of turf on his facemask. Injuries cut his career short.
OT – Al Babartsky (1943-45) - A college teammate of Vince Lombardi, Al was a part of Fordham University's 2nd version of their "Seven Blocks of Granite". He played 29 games for the Bears.
OG – Kurt Becker (1982-88, 90) - Becker started 35 of his 92 career games with the Bears, including 3 in the magical run to Super Bowl XX. Becker was a proud member of the Black and Bruise Brothers.
C – Frank Bausch (1937-40) - Bausch made the Pro Bowl his last year with the Bears, finishing up his Bears career in that 73-0 Title game.
OG – Mark Bortz (1983-94) - This 2 Time Pro Bowler holds the record for most playoff appearances by a Bear (13). He was a defensive lineman at Iowa before transitioning to OG as a pro, an danother Black and Bruise Brother.
OT – Hugh Blacklock (1920-25) - Named to the '22 All Pro Team, Blacklock started in Decatur playing for the Staleys, moving to Chicago to win the '21 Championship with the Staleys, then playing as a Bear for 4 more years. He finished his career in '26 playing for the Brooklyn Lions.
K – Kevin Butler (1985-95) - The Bears all time scoring leader with 1,116 points, and the leader in XP made, and FG made. "Butthead" also holds the single season scoring record of 144, which he set in 1985.
This is the kind of stuff I think of in the Off-Season!