The dust is still settling after another NFL Draft for Phil Emery. The Chicago Bear added a lot of depth and competition to their roster and there will be some really interesting position battles when the team hits Bourbonnais in late July and some names you’re familiar with might not be coming back. Check out the full roster and play along.
Here’s my ridiculously early 53-man roster projection for the 2014 Chicago Bears:
Jay Cutler, Jordan Palmer, David Fales
It will be interesting to watch Palmer and Fales battle for the #2 spot. In the past, the Bears have gone with 2 QB’s on their roster and kept Palmer or McCown’s number on speed dial, but would the Bears head into the season with a rookie as the primary backup for Cutler? It’s unlikely the Bears would be able to stash Fales on the practice squad, so my guess is they go with three on the active roster.
Running Backs (4)
Matt Forte, Ka’Deem Carey, Jordan Lynch, Tony Fiametta
Shaun Droughn and Michael Ford look to be on the outside looking in if Jordan Palmer can’t make the adjustment from quarterback to running back.
In my mind, only the top two receivers – Marshall and Jeffery – are set. I think it’s a good bet the Wilson gets the top chance at the #3 spot. I think Hixon beats out Weems as the special teams ace/#4 receiver. Chris Williams makes it as a return man and backup receiver. Josh Morgan had best keep his nose clean or he could be on the way out.
This is an area where the Bears could pull a veteran off the street to beat out one of the incumbents for a roster spot. Martellus is solid, Rosario needs to improve his blocking and Onobun needs to learn to catch to make the roster.
There’s a name that’s conspicuously missing from this list and it’s Roberto Garza. Even though the Bears brought him back last offseason, I think de la Puenta beats him out as the starting center. Would “Garz” add value as a backup center and guard? Probably. But unless they stash Leno on the practice squad, they might make the difficult decision to get younger with their backups.