Brandon Dunn: Chicago Bears Roster Preview


As we inch closer to the Chicago Bears’ opening season game on September 13th, we at BGO are doing a roster preview for each and every Bears’ player. They may not all create the most headlines, but each player is worth knowing as they could make an impact on the team at any time during the season. Up next, second-year defensive tackle Brandon Dunn.

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After going undrafted in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Bears signed Dunn as a free agent out of the University of Louisville. Dunn was a three-year starter in college with a big, strong frame, some athleticism and a natural ability to stop the run. He did show enough physical ability in college to at least consider him an NFL prospect. If nothing else, Dunn has the size and strength to compete at this level.

Towards the end of Training Camp last season, the Bears released Dunn, but thought enough of his performance to add him to their practice squad. He spent a huge majority of the season on the practice squad, before getting promoted to the active roster before the Bears’ Week 13 match-up against the Detroit Lions.

Dunn saw some action on the Bears’ defensive line in that game against the Lions, the next week against the Dallas Cowboys and Week 16 once again against the Lions. Dunn did not record any official stats for his play, but he certainly seemed to hold his own against NFL competition when given a shot.

What to Expect from Brandon Dunn in 2015

Dunn has shown some upside for the Bears, and will certainly compete for a reserve role with the team. New defensive coordinator Vic Fangio is bringing his 3-4 style of defense to Chicago which is certainly going to make roles change defensively. Fangio’s defense is centered around his “30 defensive front” which typically includes physical and aggressive players on the defensive line, but not necessarily a bunch of mammoth space eaters like a traditional 3-4.

Dunn does have some quickness off the snap, but it is fair to question his ability to translate to Fangio’s style of defense. He is probably best suited for a 4-3 defense, but fortunately for Dunn, most of the defensive players on the Bears’ roster are also better suited for the 4-3. It will take the organization a couple of years to find the right players to make Fangio’s 3-4 transition complete. In that time, the Bears really do not have a choice but to let guys like Dunn prove their worth.

While he does have a bit of upside, I do not expect big things out of Dunn in 2015. However, he has the combination of size (6-foot-3, 300 pounds), strength and quickness that could allow for some versatility in this defense. I believe that Dunn could realistically play all three defensive line positions in Fangio’s defense, even if he is not an ideal fit for any of them.

Versatility is always key, especially when fighting for a back-up role. While he is unlikely to be much of an impact player, with a new regime in town, Dunn has almost as much of a chance as anyone to earn a roster spot on this defensive line.

Dunn certainly has some talent and upside. If he works hard to prove his worth to the coaching staff, who knows what can happen.

Next: Bears Roster Preview: Lamarr Houston

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