Dec 2, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Seattle Seahawks running back Leon Washington (33) is tackled by Chicago Bears defensive back Sherrick McManis (27) during the second half at Soldier Field. The Seahawks beat the Bears 23-17 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports
The Chicago Bears offseason is in full swing as we head toward the start of the new league year and Free Agency. As a part of our Chicago Bears Roster Review, we’re leading off by looking at Bears Free Agents. New GM Ryan Pace and head coach John Fox have some tough decisions to make as they reshape the Bears roster in hopes of a bounceback 2015 season.
Sherrick McManis, CB, Age 27 – Unrestricted Free Agent
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The 4 year NFL veteran, Sherrick McManis, showed to be a very valuable asset in kick coverage last season finishing 2nd on the team in special teams tackles with 13 as well as a forced fumble. His contributions on defense were minimal as he was not relied on as much at cornerback, but showed to be a bright spot along with Sinorise Perry on a pretty stingy kick coverage unit.
After being drafted by the Houston Texans in the 5th round of the 2010 NFL draft, McManis was traded to the Bears before the 2012 season for FB Tyler Clutts. He hasn’t had a lot of opportunity at cornerback as he only has 1 career interception but has played well in special teams coverage units for the Bears. He was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week in 2012 after blocking a punt against the Titans and has had 46 tackles in his career.
McManis was a $635,000 cap hit for the Bears in 2014 which is not a lot of money in the grand scheme of things, but is for a 27-year old special teams role player. Even though McManis did a decent job in coverage last year he tied up a good amount of money and has not shown that he’s a viable defensive option. Last year when reserves were needed at the position, the Bears turned to the much younger Demontre Hurst and Al Louis-Jean to fill that void. Both players left much to be desired but both are younger, less expensive and have more upside. Cornerback is a position that appears to be very thin heading into 2015 and the Bears cannot afford to keep a CB on the roster that is strictly a special team’s player. To me, it’s time to move on to a younger player that cannot only be trusted to solidify special teams, but also some ability to play CB or nickel if called upon. After Tim Jennings and Kyle Fuller, depth is poor and it would not be a surprise if GM Ryan Pace made a move for one of the intriguing free agent options at corner which includes: Darius Butler (Colts), Brandon Flowers (Chargers), Byron Maxwell (Seahawks), Antonio Cromartie (Cardinals) or Kareem Jackson (Texans). It’s also worth noting that San Francisco has 3 free agent CB’s who are all familiar with new defensive coordinator Vic Fangio’s scheme (Chris Culliver, Perrish Cox and Chris Cook).
So what do you think Bear fans? What should we do with McManis and more importantly, the CB position?