A couple of weeks ago, we looked at the Bears 80-man roster and tried to break everyone down into 4 categories – Locks, Solid, Bubble and Not Looking So Good. After a couple more preseason games and finals cuts coming Saturday, here’s another look. I’ve decided to pick lane with the “Solid” guys – most of them moved to my Locks category, but a couple slid down into the Bubble category. By my count, we’ve got 36 Locks, which leaves 17 spots for 39 guys to slug it out for a coveted spot on the final 53-man roster. Let’s take a look at the Locks:
Adams, Anthony – your starting nose tackle. Great effort and despite small size, just makes plays.
Afalava, Al – rookie has made plays in the beat up secondary. Needs to keep making plays.
Anderson, Mark – has shown some flashes of rookie form, but also blew a few plays. Needs to improve consistency, especially in the run defense.
Beekman, Josh- key backup interior offensive lineman. Could be the heir to Olin Kreutz’s spot.
Bennett, Earl – chemistry with Cutler has shown. Great catches in traffic. Needs to show more to get open more consistently.
Bowman, Zackary- all we’ve been hearing about is what a great offseason he’s had. The next play he makes in preseason game will be his first of 2009.
Briggs, Lance – a no-doubter.
Brown, Alex – probably the most consistent performer on the D-line.
Clark, Desmond – as good a #2 tight end as you’ll find. Great blocker in running situations.
Cutler, Jay – DUH!
Forte, Matt- double DUH!
Garza, Roberto – solid performer and starting guard.
Gilbert, Jarron – in case we need someone to jump out of the pool or back up Tommie Harris.
Gould, Robbie – hey, we need a kicker.
Graham, Corey – has played well filling in for the injured Charles Tillman. Be interested to see his role when Peanut returns.
Hanie, Caleb – your #2 QB.
Harris, Tommie – starting DT. His health could be a key to the defense’s success.
Harrison, Marcus – after a trip to Jenny Craig, he will work in the nose tackle rotation.
Hester, Devin – don’t be ridiculous!
Idonije, Israel – versatile D-lineman fills any role along the defensive line and is a special teams stud.
Jones, Kevin – backup running back should be better a full year removed from his knee surgery.
Kreutz, Olin – the most tenured Bear has nothing to worry about for yet another season anchoring the O-line.
Mannelly, Patrick – the other most-tenured Bear. The long-snapper lives life looking between his legs. Always gets it there on the money.
Manning, Danieal – another injured member of the secondary. Will contribute in defense and special teams if that hammy ever heals.
Maynard, Brad – never had anything to worry about, but the Bears punter has had a great preseason. I love when he pins the other team deep.
McKie, Jason – probably the only true fullback the Bears will keep.
Ogunleye, Adewale – another of the starting defensive ends.
Olsen, Greg – Jay Cutler’s #1 target and the Bears new starting tight end.
Omiyale, Frank – the free agent guard won the starting job.
Pace, Orlando- despite a rough game agaisnt the Broncos, Pace will be anchoring the left side of the o-line
Payne, Kevin – brings the pain in the secondary.
Shaffer, Kevin – swing tackle.
Tillman, Charles – have you heard? He’s been injured this preseason. Now he’s unsure if he’ll be ready for Green Bay. If he’s not close, would the Bears put him on the PUP list and shelve him for the first 6 gamed?
Tinoisamoa, Pisa- another free agent that came in and won a starting spot. Will join 2 Pro Bowlers in the linebacking corp.
Urlacher, Brian – another no-doubter!
Williams, Chris – last season’s first round draft pick will hold it down as the starting right tackle.
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