We are Jon Bostic days away from kickoff. Perhaps no other rookie will have more pressure to produce than the second round pick out of Florida. While Phil Emery signed veteran linebacker DJ Williams to a one deal in free agency, there will be pressure for draft picks to produce and start reshaping the aging defense. If Emery’s plan works, Shea McClellin and Jon Bostic will form the nucleus of the next generation Bears defense.
Bostic has all the physical tools, earning second team All-SEC following his senior season. He collected 237 tackles, 7.5 sacks and 5 interceptions in his collegiate career. The Bears selected Bostic with the 50th overall pick with a view to replace legendary linebacker Brian Urlacher. The good news is that he doesn’t have to step in from Day 1.
One of the more interesting battles to watch in camp will be Bostic and Williams. Can the youngster figure out an NFL defense and challenge the one-year rental Williams? For me it’s not a question of if, but when Bostic takes over at middle linebacker. I don’t think Bostic comes out of camp as the starter but expect him to be a special teams contributor out of the gate. If Bostic isn’t starting some time this season, I’d be surprised and disappointed because it could very well mean another Phil Emery draft pick isn’t panning out.
Of course one of the most notable recent 57’s was Olin Kreutz, the longtime fan favorite who was abruptly shown the door a couple of seasons ago. The radio voice of the Bears, Tom Thayer, also wore #57 during his tenure with the Beloved.
We’re 57 days from kickoff. Are you ready???