The secondary has been a concern for the Bears for some time now. If we Bears fans aren't complaining about the talent on the field, we're complaining about the scheme the Bears run. Charles Tillman and Danieal Manning are the most griped about members of the defensive backfield, and of late, Chris Harris has his share of critics.
Scheme wise, the cushion the corners give is an oft discussed topic, as is the failure for the safeties to recognize the plays and react sooner, taking away the void in the dreaded Tampa 2. The DBs have their issues, but it's not all doom and gloom. There are some potential bright spots in the group, and some of the additions the Bears made in 2010 could help them get back to running their D effectively.
Tillman and Zackary Bowman are set at corner, and Corey Graham will make the team as a 3rd CB or nickel. D.J. Moore has had his chance as the #1 nickel so he should be set to open on the 53 man roster as well. Rookie Joshua Moore has looked better than I expected so far and free agent pick up Tim Jennings hasn't been bad. Woodny Turenne might be in the mix for a final roster spot depending on how he graded out from last night's game. Rookie free agent Cornelius Brown is a long shot at best.
It could come down to Josh Moore, Turenne, and Jennings for 1 corner position if they go with 5 CBs. Keeping 6 is also a possibility. Of the three, I rank them Moore, Jennings, and Turenne. Although Turenne did play a solid game last night.
At strong safety, Danieal Manning has looked real good. I wonder where the kid would be as a player had he been inserted at SS from day 1? Rookie Major Wright will be the starting free safety sooner rather than later. That finger injury may be the only thing keeping him from starting. Chris Harris has had some issues, but he's playing out of position in my opinion. I don't care about the safeties are interchangeable mumbo jumbo we hear, the SS still plays closer to the line of scrimmage on running downs. The reason they give us that line is that when offenses shift strength, the Bears may not have time to flip their safeties every time. When that happens they flip responsibilities. But the SS is still a SS and the FS is still the FS.
I think Josh Bullocks' ability to play both safety positions lets him stay employed, and I think Craig Steltz sticks around too. Steltz has kind of grown on me. Physically he isn't the biggest or fastest, but I trust him to know his job. Rookies Aaron Webster and Quentin Scott are both practice squad candidates, leaving 2nd year pro Al Afalava the odd man out. With the two new faces at safety for Chicago someone has to go, and I think it's Afalava.