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Bears small promotions could have big impact on veterans

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It was announced this afternoon that the Chicago Bears have promoted two long-time trainers into new positions. Chris Hanks has been promoted to Head Coach/ Athletic Trainer and Bobby Slater to Head Athletic Trainer/ Director of Rehabilitation. Between the two employees, there is 25 years of service with the team.

These may seem like small promotions on the surface, but with many veterans coming into contract years, seeing the team's loyalty in rewarding their own could have a positive affect on future Bears player contracts.

Some notable contract years for Bears players:

2012: Lance Louis, Patrick Mannelly, Henry Melton, D.J. Moore, Nick Roach, Chris Spencer, Brian Urlacher, Chris Williams, Israel Idonije, Johnny Knox

2013: Charles Tillman, J'Marcus Webb, Major Wright, Jay Cutler, Kellen Davis, Roberto Garza, Robbie Gould, Devin Hester, Tim Jennings

Of course, most players will want to maximize their incomes by signing with the team that offers them the most money, but we have all seen examples of when loyalty to their long-term team can take priority over adding a few extra dollars to their bank accounts.

The two trainers promoted today have been around as long as any player currently on the Bears roster, so these small promotions could easily have a bigger impact in the long run.

Kudos to the Bears for rewarding their own...