Sherrick McManis Days Until Chicago Bears Season Opener


Way back in early June, Bear Goggles On started our Countdown to Kickoff series. When you think about it that way it’s easier to see that we’re getting very close to the destination of this journey. Today marks 27 days from the kickoff of the Chicago Bears 2015 regular season against the Green Bay Packers. In honor of that milestone, today we look at the player who wears #27 for the Bears: cornerback Sherrick McManis.

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McManis, who played his college football at Northwestern and was well-known by the Bears scouting staff thanks to the University’s general proximity to Bears’ facilities, was originally drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs (and subsequently traded to the Texans) in the fifth round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He became a Bear three seasons ago via a swap with the Texans, coming to Chicago in exchange for fullback Tyler Clutts.

So far in his pro career, McManis has been relegated to special teams duty and has yet to hold down a starting cornerback gig for any length of time. Players tend to stick around when they are effective special team performers, however, and that is exactly who McManis has been and what he has done. If he makes the 53-man roster on John Fox’s Bears, this will be his fourth year with the team.

Aug 13, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears linebacker

Sam Acho

(49) is congratulated by cornerback Sherrick McManis (27) after making an interception against the Miami Dolphins during the second half in a preseason NFL football game at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

In a game where nobody on defense shined all that much until the starters had taken a seat for the night, McManis seemed to have himself a notable outing in the Bears’ first preseason matchup on Thursday against the Dolphins. More than one media outlet has touted McManis as someone who is making a push on this revamped Bears defense, thanks to his performance against Miami.

What to Expect From Sherick McManis In 2015:

At this point his reliability on special teams gives him a leg up on the rest of the cornerbacks not named Kyle Fuller or Tim Jennings, but I’m not jumping on the McManis-as-a-starter bandwagon yet. Alan Ball was my choice to be the number two corner opposite Fuller with Jennings the nickelback, and I’ll ride with that prediction until we see a different starting lineup at the start of the regular season.

It’s still so early in the preseason and based on the secrecy with which the Bears have operated thus far, do we really think we can fully believe anything we’ve seen at training camp or in that first preseason game against the Dolphins? Preseason is largely smoke and mirrors anyway, and perhaps to an even greater extent this year. More solid conclusions can begin to be drawn after the second and third preseason games.

McManis did play well in the Miami game and deserves credit for making a handful of tackles (four) and doing a nice job of forcing a fumble from third-year running back Mike Gillislee, which can be seen here:

On one of the plays where he was credited with a pass defended — a slant pass thrown to Matt Hazel on the Dolphins second possession after Tannehill was already relegated to a baseball cap on the sideline — I felt he got away with getting there a touch early. A slight difference of opinion coupled with a pessimistic eye, I suppose. At least he was there, even if he was a bit early in my opinion.

I fully expect McManis to make the 53-man, but I don’t see him as a starting corner to begin the season. As it rolls on, sure, it’s definitely possible he gets an opportunity to start. We don’t know enough about this team yet to say that McManis elevating to a prominent position would be a good thing signifying a player seizing on an opportunity, or if his ascension would require failure by other players whom we expect more from.

Either way, McManis is in the mix for now. Another chance to show well will come for him and the rest of his fellow roster hopefuls this Saturday.

Next: Preseason Game #1: Stock Watch Defense

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