Back on August 1st I gave my initial predictions on the Chicago Bears final 53 man roster. Now that the Bears have had a few training camp practices in the books, I'll take another stab at how things will look after final cut downs.
Quarterback (2): Jay Cutler, Jimmy Clausen
The Bears really need to see what they have in 2nd year pro David Fales, hopefully he can start practicing soon. Clausen hasn't been very good and Shane Carden looks like a rookie UDFA. If Clausen struggles during preseason, I would not be surprised if the Bears looked elsewhere for a veteran signal caller.
Runningback (4): Matt Forte, Jacquizz Rodgers, Jeremy Langford, Ka'Deem Carey
The 4th spot will come down between Daniel Thomas, who gives the Bears a big back dimension on the goal line and Carey. The preseason games will be huge for this battle.
Wide Receiver (5): Alshon Jeffery, Eddie Royal, Kevin White, Marquess Wilson, Marc Mariani (returner)
A.J. Cruz will need to really flash as a returner during the preseason, because so far Mariani has been getting practice reps at wide out.
Tight End (4): Martellus Bennett, Dante Rosario, Bear Pascoe, Zach Miller
I had Blake Annen in the #4 spot, but Zach Miller is still healthy and a healthy Miller will beat out Annen.
Offensive Line (9): Kyle Long (G), Matt Slauson (G), Will Montgomery (C), Jermon Bushrod (T), Jordan Mills (T), Charles Leno (T), Vladimir Ducasse (G), Michael Ola (G/T), Hroniss Grasu (C)
No changes to this group from my first run through the roster. Rookie Tayo Fabuluje has been slowed by asthma/allergies, but he's a practice squad project.
Total Offense - 24
Cornerback (5): Kyle Fuller, Alan Ball, Tim Jennings, Sherrick McManis, Al Louis-Jean
Nothing changes here, I still think the Bears go with the potential of Louis-Jean over veteran Tracy Porter.
Safety (4): Antrel Rolle, Brock Vereen, Ryan Mundy, Adrian Amos
I'm surprised just how often Vereen has been running with the ones. His speed and athleticism sets him apart from Mundy.
Defensive line (6): Jeremiah Ratliff, Eddie Goldman, Jarvis Jenkins, Ego Ferguson, Will Sutton, Cornelius Washington
Eddie Goldman running with the ones gives this group more flexibility. Nothing I've read or heard about rookie UDFA Terry Williams leads me to believe he can make the team. I think he has practice squad written all over him.
Linebacker (11): Pernell McPhee (OLB), Lamarr Houston (OLB), Jared Allen (OLB), Sam Acho (OLB), Willie Young (OLB), David Bass (OLB), Christian Jones (ILB), Mason Foster (ILB), Shea McClellin (ILB), Jon Bostic (ILB), Matthew Wells (LB)
The Bears could have 3 or 4 OLBs rushing the QB in passing situations instead of having defensive lineman on the field. Even if Young struggles in the transition to OLB, he's too good a pass rusher to dump. Unless the Bears trade him, I think he sticks to rush the QB on 3rd downs, plus he has special teams experience.
At Mississippi State, newcomer Wells played a hybrid LB/DB role, but he also had a big hand in special teams. It's in the 3rd phase where the 6'2", 215 pound Wells could find a home while the Bears figure out his best pro position.
Total Defense - 26
Kicker (1): Robbie Gould
Punter (1): Pat O'Donnell
Long snapper (1): Thomas Gafford