Building the Bears 53-man Roster - Bubble Guys

The Bears just trimmed their roster down to 75 the other day and had to make another move to clear a space for recently added veteran cornerback Rod Hood.  The first casualty of the 2009 draft class was 7th round wide receiver Derek Kinder out of Pitt.   I had heard good things about Kinder when he was drafted, but it’s really crowded at the wide receiver position.  Who knows maybe he’ll get brought back to the Practice Squad?

Final cut-downs for the Bears to get to their 53-man roster are on Saturday, so another 22 players will be fighting for their professional football lives on Thursday night when the Browns roll into town for the 4th and final preseason game.  These guys will get extended time on Thursday, as the starters are expected to only get a series or two. 

Bubble Guys (29):
Aromashodu, Devin – I think DA makes the squad because Jay likes him and he’s done nothing in camp to work himself out of a job
Baldwin, Ervin – he’s a long shot on the defensive line
Balogh, Cody – could be headed to the practice squad again
Basanez, Brett – my only question is if he’ll stick around to catch a Northwestern game
Buenning, Dan – it’s an uphill climb to snag one of the few remaining spots on the O-line
Bullocks, Josh – he of YouTube fame needs to make a couple of plays.  The Bears needs some experience in the secondary and he could provide some, but needs to provide some big plays in the process
Davis, Jason – doesn’t look good for the ex-Illini since the Bears will probably only keep one fullback
Davis, Kellen – this big target looks to stick around as the third tight end
Davis, Rashied – this is one of the toughest calls.  I hate to say it, but I think he stays based on special teams ability and some experience on a team sorely lacking in it at the wide receiver position
Freeman, Marcus – another in the crowded linebacker class.  Seems destined for the practice squad
Gaines, Michael – here’s a true bubble guy.  I think it’s between him and Adrian Peterson.
Hamilton, Marcus – Matt Ryan and the Falcons hope he stays.  Me, not so much.
Hillenmeyer, Hunter – at the start of camp, I would have said no, but I think the Bears keep this guy around to back up the linebackers with some experience.
Hood, Rod – needs to make a quick first impression.  I guess he will stick, but you never know.
Iglesias, Juaquin – it’s unlikely he can sneak through to the practice squad.  May make it because of draft status.
Knox, Johnny – has shown flashes of that jaw-dropping speed.  I think we’ll be seeing more of this guy.
Louis, Lance – don’t beat me up, but I think chances are slim for the final 53, but good for the practice squad.
McBride, Trumaine – I moved Tru onto the bubble after a horrible game against the Broncos and a bad preseason overall.  When someone needed to step up in the banged up defensive backfield, he was nowhere to be found and that might be true after Saturday.
Melton, Henry – don’t be surprised if his ankle injury leads to a redshirt season on the IR.
Moore, D.J. – this diminutive corner might be overmatched to play on Sundays.   He’ll need to show something on Thursday night.
Peterson, Adrian – I love his effort and consistency.  Great on special teams.  Think he sticks as the Bears keep 4 running backs.
Rideau, Brandon – I have been pulling for this guy since last season.  Has the size, but hasn’t been able to make the big plays this preseason like he did in ’08 when he was the preseason’s league leading receiver.  I think he’s on the outside looking in heading into Thursday.
Roach, Nick – he’s been a little banged up this preseason and in a tight competition at linebacker, finds himself fighting for a roster spot.
Steltz, Craig – he was a late bloomer at LSU and the Bears must be hoping that’s the case here.  Needs to step up his game, but it appears he’ll make the squad.
Toeaina, Matt – Dusty Dvoracek’s loss is Toeaina’s gain.  Looks to be in a good spot to contribute in the tackle rotation.
Turenne, Woodny – showed well the first preseason game, but haven’t seen much since.   Practice squad?
Vasher, Nathan – wouldn’t surprise me at all if the Bears dumped him to put everyone on notice.  Rod Hood’s arrival could spell the end for “The Interceptor”.
Williams, Jamar – I think he should be safe, but the linebacker competition is tight, so you can’t be complacent.
Wolfe, Garrett – I wish he was the next Darren Sproles, but I just don’t think I’ve seen that “it” from Wolfe in his time here.  I think he makes it on the basis of his special teams ability and status as a third round draft pick.  He’ll be given every opportunity to make it.


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