Post-Draft: Bears tight end depth chart projections

Sep 25, 2016; Arlington, TX, USA; Chicago Bears tight end Zach Miller (86) celebrates his third quarter touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 25, 2016; Arlington, TX, USA; Chicago Bears tight end Zach Miller (86) celebrates his third quarter touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports /
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How will the Chicago Bears tight end depth chart play out?

Now that the NFL draft is over it is time to start looking to rookie camps, OTAs and training camp. The 90-man roster is now set so the time to speculate about who will be in what spot, and who may make the 53-man roster is here. In this series, we will go position by position to project the potential depth chart of the Bears come August. This edition will focus on tight ends.

1. Zach Miller

Miller is the top starter for now but his situation will one be monitored. Miller has had two of his best seasons recently with the Bears. However, he has a very checkered injury past, that affected three full years of his career, and is coming off of a foot injury that sidelined him for six games. Miller is 32, is a free agent next year, and saw his role replacement in Adam Shaheen drafted early in the 2017 NFL draft. His job is definitely going to be in jeopardy as the season goes on.

2. Dion Sims

Sims is a great contrast to Miller. Miller is closer to a move tight end who lines up in the slot, while Sims can line up inline. Sims was given a three-year deal with $10 million guaranteed this offseason. He clearly fits into their future plans and can be a great compliment to either Miller or Shaheen.

3. Adam Shaheen

The Bears drafted Shaheen much earlier than he was anticipated to go. As much as they have faith in Sims being a part of their future, they know that Shaheen is a part of their future. As of now, he is very raw, especially as a blocker. However, as the season goes on he may be able to see the field and run some routes as he prepares to take over for Miller next year.

4. Ben Braunecker

Braunecker was active for 13 games last season and started in two. He is not very experienced, but has more upside than someone like Daniel Brown. Braunecker is likely a better blocking threat than Brown. While Brown is a better pass catcher, Braunecker still has enough receiving upside to get the nod.

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5. Daniel Brown

Brown was signed late into last season and filled in for Miller when he went down to injury. He is a receiver type and not much of a blocker. Brown is an exclusive-rights free agent next year so he could lose his spot to one of the lower-end guys.

6. MyCole Pruitt

Pruitt may have more upside than Brown. He came in last season due to lack of depth as well and only played in two games. However, he has some upside as a blocker and could be more of a threat in the passing game than Brown. It could be a camp battle to watch.

Next: Wide Receiver Depth Chart Projections

7. DeSean Smith

Smith is a big receiver and a clear red zone threat from LSU. Still, he is an undrafted free agent and is very raw. His best bet is to make the practice squad for a season.

8. Franko House

House is a former basketball player so he is a complete project. However, at 6’6”, 250 pounds he has all the size needed and could be another practice squad stash for next season.