Change of direction

It looked as if the Bears were sold on <!--Default NodeId For Arizona State is 551,2005--><A HREF=>Arizona State</A> defensive end <!--Default NodeId For Terrell Suggs is 318755,2002--><A HREF=[PlayerNode:318755]>Terrell Suggs</A>. He was to be the pass rusher the team has lacked since the days of Richard Dent, but in a time of stop watches dictating draft status Suggs' might have run himself out of millions of dollars.

ASU's much anticipated pro-day was held Wednesday with several big names in attendance. Bears GM Jerry Angelo was in Tempe specifically to see Suggs and wasn't thrilled with the outcome.

"It was a good workout, not a special workout,'' Angelo told the Chicago Sun-Times. "The perception about him, which is duly earned, is that he's a special player based on the production he had last year, which was phenomenal. You don't want to get too carried away in terms of the measurables, even if they weren't what everybody thought they would be.''

Suggs was expected to run the forty in the 4.6's, but his best time was in the high 4.7's and even fell into the low 4.8's. The dip in time could be attributed to Suggs going from 240 pounds to 257 since the end of the college season.

Despite producing at the highest level in college, which included a record setting campaign of 24 sacks, Suggs poor forty time could drop him from the top of the board to double digit pick.

The talk was that the Houston Texans, who pick third, were gaining interest in plugging Suggs into their 3-4 scheme. Leaving the Bears to pursue a trade down or go in another direction with the fourth overall pick.

Suggs disappointing performance could work in the Bears favor if they still believe he can still be productive playing at a higher weight.

However, at this point Suggs is dropping fast while Kansas State CB Terrence Newman and Kentucky DT Dewayne Robertson are the top candidates for the first defensive player selected in next month's draft.

A few miles away in Phoenix at the Owners Meetings head coach Dick Jauron discussed plans to put Mike Gandy at right tackle and to leave Marc Colombo blocking on the left side. Previous speculation had the two players reversed.

If the Bears don't find a pass rusher in the draft Jauron might have a player in mind. He mentioned Jacksonville's defensive end Tony Brackens the best athlete he'd ever seen when he coached there. Brackens will likely become a salary cap casualty after June 1.

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