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Chicago Bears 2017 Position Battles: The competition at cornerback will be fierce

NFL: Chicago Bears-Minicamp Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears had a cornerback problem last year. The players they trotted out to the position were either too young, less than one hundred percent, or just not good enough. General manager Ryan Pace addressed the situation with a couple free agents, and even though they weren’t the top guys many fans wanted, they’ll still represent an upgrade at the position.

And speaking of the young corners, the hope is at least one of them makes a marked improvement in play from 2016 to 2017. With the new faces at the position comes more competition, and competition will either bring out the best in a player, or cause a player to wilt. Let’s hope it’s the former.

Roster Locks

The two free agents, Prince Amukamara and Marcus Cooper, are in line to open up as the starters at corner. Cooper has been slowed by a hamstring issue, but hopefully this is just a case of the Bears being extra cautious.

I also think Bryce Callahan, and Cre’Von LeBlanc are both making the team as well. The UDFAs from 2015 and 2016 respectively, have each played slot corner and outside, but I think they’ll be fighting it outr for the #1 nickleback role this preaseason.

A good bet to make it

Former first round draft pick, Kyle Fuller, has had an up and down camp. Early on, he was the best corner on the field, but lately, he’s had some struggles. I think he’s far too talented to give up on, plus his physicality would translate to special teams if that ends up his primary role.

On the bubble

I think this is the year that Sherrick McManis is forced off the roster. His outstanding special teams play has kept him in the NFL since 2010, but with the upgrades made to this position, I think that pushes the depth chart down.

The Bears were high on Johnthan Banks last year, and he started a couple games once he was healthy, but this year he’s caught in a numbers crunch.

B.W. Webb has had an interesting five year career. The former fourth round pick of the Dallas Cowboys in 2013, has played on a new team every year he’s been in the league. Going from Dallas (15 games), to the Steelers in 2014 (11 games), to the Titans in 2015 (9 games, 2 starts), to the Saints last year (14 games, 8 starts). He hopes to make it five for five with the Bears in 2017.

I doubt Rashaad Reynolds has the talent to stick on the roster and at 26 years old, he may not be a viable practice squad candidate either.