The Bears Den: July 29, 2012

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"...where 'Team Schweickert' sounds fractionally better than 'Team Bullock'."

J’Marcus Webb should win Bears’ mock battle at left tackle - Mark Potash: "Position battles are overrated. They’re sometimes a charade, a ploy by the coaching staff to motivate an underachieving player." Also looks at key young players that the team are expecting to step up.

Some good pops as Chicago Bears begin contact practices - Brad Biggs: "In pads for the first time since New Year's Day, the Bears have a cracking good time." Among others, mentions Wootton looking "explosive".

Marshall delivers a slew of big catches - Larry Mayer: Brandon Marshall put on a show in the Bears' first padded practice Saturday night, electrifying an enthusiastic crowd of more than 10,000 in Bourbonnais.

Follow WCG on Twitter; like us on Facebook. Go, Team Schweickert!

Early standouts at Bears camp - Kip Lewis: DB depth much deeper, Alshon Jeffrey "picked up where he left off when he arrived at the rookie mini-camp".

First practice in pads will reveal plenty for young Bears - Moon Mullin: There's only so much that can be learned about young players without pads on.

McClellin does it all in first padded practice - Moon Mullin: Shea McClellin was moved all over the field and impressed in a number of ways in the first padded practice of training camp.

First-rounder McClellin finally dons pads - Jeff Dickerson: good burst in pass-rushing drills, seemed to struggle against OTs and in the inside run drill, but plenty of time to refine his game before regular season.

Marshall puts on a show, complete with a little drama - Moon Mullin: Brandon Marshall led an impressive group of receivers in the Bears' first padded practice of 2012 training camp.

[Video] Lewis, Mullin, Bowen discuss first padded practice - McClellin "not bad for a first night"; Marshall "phenomenal"; Bears "creating role for Rodriguez", OL "solid", and experience at DB depth.

[Video] Bowen, Pompei on Bears night practice - Bowen very impressed with Rodriguez; McClellin showed good speed and counter-moves; Carimi showing good footwork and hand punches; Hayden stood out in press coverage.

[Video] Lovie Smith evaluates first practice - Calls the first Bears practice a good start, says Brandon Marshall is a 'scholarship player,' updates Devin Hester's status.

Devin Hester likely returning Sunday - Missed Saturday night's practice due to an ankle injury.

Photos - Bears training camp - Day 3: As the sun goes down, the competition picks up.

Alshon Jeffery must build on his natural ability - Matt Bowen: Rookie receivers often progress slowly because they must develop techniques that are needed to succeed against NFL talent.

Ex-Bucs DT Brian Price just happy to be with Bears - Sean Jensen: Brian Price couldn’t fend off the anxiety Saturday night, but only because he couldn’t be on the field mixing it up with his new teammates. Expected to get a look at both interior line spots; according to multiple personnel evaluators, "possesses tremendous talent; enough ability in fact to potentially land a starting job at some point with the Bears".

Bears considered OT Jeff Otah before trading for defensive line help - Viewed strictly as a right tackle. Hints that Bears are still interested in upgrading OL.

Extra Points: Bears news and notes - " ... J'Marcus Webb and Chris Williams had time at starting T and in a two-minute drill held their own at pass blocking against Julius Peppers, Chauncey Davis and McClellin"

‘Loaded’ backfield
 a benefit for Bears - Bears finished ninth in the NFL with 125.9 rushing yards a game last season, and that was with a stubborn, pass-first OC in Mike Martz. Look for Bush to improve offense's third-down conversion rate.

Tight ends like the Bears’ new offense - Kellen Davis: ‘‘It’s a totally different system, totally different offense with the game plan as far as the passing game.’. Also, somewhat worryingly, Shea McClellin at DE "more often than not looked like a boy going against men."

Bears TE rebirth depends on Davis, Rodriguez - Tight ends are the early reads on a lot of plays in Mike Tice's offense. Rodriguez, Adams impressive in passing game during OTAs.

Bears utilize "no huddle" offense - Jim Miller breaks down how this style of play will benefit the team.

Briggs wants LBs to notch sacks - Linebacker is always an assumed position of strength every summer when the Bears report to training camp, but Lance Briggs wants improvement in one area.

Earl Bennett thankful for his good fortune - Suffering a lacerated kidney early last season could have been much worse for the WR who's expected to be a big part of the offense this year

Five truths about NFL training camp - Andrew Brandt: Training camp is a cold, calculated process, and those trying to make rosters have very little control.

Spoof mash-up video of London's mayor welcoming the world to the Olympics. Honestly, he's my mayor. "Get some burgers, or get eaten by bears!"

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