We had so much fun doing our Countdown to Kickoff series last season that we decided to do it again. In case you’re new to the series, we’ll do a roster preview as we count down the days until the Chicago Bears September 7th season opener against the Buffalo Bills.
Since there are 2 Bears on the current roster with the #72, I figured that I would get your attention better with the fridge, which symbolizes only 72 days until the Chicago Bears season opener. My favorite memory of William “Refrigerator” Perry will always be when he tried to carry Walter Payton into the end zone when Payton had 2 defenders draped on him in a game against the Cowboys in ’85. It’s interesting what glimpses you remember from your early childhood and that was one of them. I vividly remember watching that game with my dad and both of us laughing hysterically. The Fridge was and still is, an icon.
That being said, I didn’t think that anyone would appreciate using Gabe Carimi to start off this article – the most recent 72 on the Bears. Since we want to move on from the heartache that Mr. Carimi caused us and we all know about the Fridge, let us get to know our current #72′s, shall we?
Most fans know about Kyle Fuller from this year’s draft, but few know about rookie offensive tackle Charles Leno Jr. – the 2014 7th round pick for the Bears, out of Boise State. Projected to be drafted in rounds 5 or 6, Leno possesses great arm length, can play right and left tackle and is very durable, starting in 39 consecutive games at Boise State. Some of his critics state that Leno can get overpowered and stressed by speed rushers at times. However, the Bears got a solid starter on the offensive line last year in the 5th round with Jordan Mills. Can they hit the jackpot again with Leno? His primary competition for a roster spot will be James Brown, Michael Ola, Joe Long and Cody Booth. I think that he’ll get the opportunity to show that a 7th round offensive lineman can make an impact…just ask former 7th rounders Tom Nalen and Adam Timmerman.
The “other” 72 on the roster is 6’4” 280-pound defensive end, Tracy Robertson. Going undrafted out of Baylor in 2012, Robertson has been a journeyman in his short NFL career. He has played for Houston, Detroit, New England and most recently, Miami. However, he has yet to make a regular season roster in the NFL and it looks very slim that it will change this year, unless he’s got something up his sleeve. His primary competition for a roster spot coming into camp includes: David Bass, Cornelius Washington, Austen Lane and Trevor Scott. I think it’s highly unlikely that we see Robertson kept around for a long period of time, but I’ve been wrong before.
Between the 2, I think Leno keeps #72, earns a roster spot and adds some much needed depth at offensive tackle. Robertson’s best chance is to be kept for the practice squad, in the event that the injury bug hits our defensive line again.
Be on the lookout for our Countdown to Kickoff series as we continue to work our way to the season opener on September 7th. We’re 72 days from kickoff. Are you ready???