Chicago Bears Roster Moves

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3.) Bears release NT Terry Williams

I missed this news earlier in the month, but the Bears released NT Terry Williams, The Swamp Monster, from the practice squad. Williams showed a ton of potential in the preseason, but the Bears must have had good reason to let him go instead of keeping him stashed on the practice squad. I hope we see Williams in blue & orange again at some point.

4.) Bears bring in three LBs for a tryout

In addition to promoting Anderson the Bears also brought in some veteran LBs to tryout this week. None of the names are exciting, Lawrence Sidbury, Jonathan Massaquoi, and Trevardo Williams, but they all have NFL experience at least. Here is a brief scouting report on all three:

  • Sidbury is a former fourth round pick (ATL) in 2009 who has mostly played on the D-line, but has the speed (4.53) to be an edge rusher at OLB.
  • Massaquoi was a 5th round pick (ATL) in 2012 who has played exclusively at DE in the Falcons 4-3 scheme before being signed by the Titans before this season to play as a 3-4 OLB. He missed all of OTAs with an injury (shoulder) and was released before the season. Massaquoi had 6 sacks in 39 games over three seasons for the Falcons. He doesn’t have the size (6’2 | 264) to play DE in a 3-4, but has the speed (4.68) to play OLB if healthy.
  • Williams is the youngest and most intriguing of the group in my opinion. He was a 4th round pick of the Redskins in 2013 out of UConn who played 3 games for the Skins last year and got his first NFL sack. He played OLB for the Skins, but his size (6’1 | 237) and speed (4.57) make him a better fit at ILB in Fangio’s scheme. ILB is the Bears most glaring position of need right now and Williams is the youngest, most athletic, and has the most special teams potential of the group brought in for a tryout. If the Bears are going to sign any of these three, I think Williams has the most upside.

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5.) Bears sign WR Nathan Palmer and DT D’Anthony Smith to practice squad

With the losses of Seymour and Dunn from the practice squad the Bears had two openings to fill and signed WR Nathan Palmer and DT D’Anthony Smith. Palmer is an undrafted receiver out of Northern Illinois who played in five games for the Colts as a rookie but suffered a major knee injury in 2013 and hasn’t seen the field since despite spending time with the Broncos, Dolphins, 49ers, and the Patriots. He’s not big (5’11 | 195) but has great speed (4.34) and experience returning both kicks and punts in college. Palmer made some big plays for the Broncos in training camp last year, so both Fox and Gase are familiar with his skill set.

D’Anthony Smith has the best pedigree of any player in this post as a 3rd round pick by the Jags in 2010. It took Smith a couple years to see the field but he was a useful rotational DT for the Jags in 2012 (.3 grade in 101 snaps) and then was traded to the Seahawks before the 2013 season. Smith played just two games for Seattle before missing the rest of 2013 and all of 2014 with injuries and being released this preseason.

6.) Bears release C Ryan Seymour from practice squad, sign C Barrett Jones

The Bears released center Ryan Seymour from the practice squad. Seymour was a 7th round pick by the Seahawks in 2013, who was released and caught on with the Browns in 2014. After losing Pro Bowl center Alex Mack early last season, they struggled to find a center and gave Seymour three starts. He played 4 games overall and finished the season with a -4.5 grade from Pro Football Focus. Despite losing their starting center for the season, apparently the Bears didn’t see enough out of Seymour to keep him around. The Bears did recently sign C Barrett Jones, a 4th round selection by the Rams in 2013, to the practice squad.

Next: Chicago Bears Week 5: Takeaways

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