Who is being called into action? Just about everybody who is healthy. Bobby Wade, Charles Tillman, Lance Briggs, Michael Haynes, Justin Gage, Tron LaFavor, Joe Odom, Brock Forsey, Cameron Worrell, Justin Gage and Ian Scott will probably be on the field more often than not on Sunday.
"In the best of all possible worlds, no veterans would have been injured," said FS Cameron Worrell. "But it has happened, and it is up to us to deal with things the way they are."
Worrell in fact got his chance when Todd Johnson, a fellow rookie, went down with a broken jaw in the preseason opener. Worrell hasn't looked back and quickly made a name for himself early in the preseason when he hit a Colts' receiver hard enough to make his helmet come off. Since then, this Fresno State grad has seen increased playing time in a variety of situations. In last weekend's Seahawks game, Worrell managed to make a key fumble recovery on the Bears 9 after a punt return attempt by RW McQuarters. He also had an impressive tackle on the Seattle 20 during the second quarter.
"Any time that I get the chance to be in the game, I try my best to make something happen," Worrell said. "That's how I played in college, and that's what I plan to do now in the pros. It's all part of the learning process. The more I am out there, the better I will be."
Although DT Tron LaFavor has seen limited playing time so far, he feels that he will be able to contribute to the Bears as well.
"Things are going well for me so far," LaFavor said. "I am lucky in that Alex Brown who I played with at Florida, is right here. Alex has been taking some time to show me the ropes, to help make me a better player. We have always communicated well. His views on things really help me understand what is going on at this level."
LaFavor feels that so far at least, he has not fallen into the classic rookie trap of over thinking each play.
"At Florida I pretty much relied on my instincts," LaFavor states "And that's what I am trying to continue doing right now. It makes a real difference in speed if you just react rather than wait and decide what you are going to do. As Alex would say ‘always think less, play more.'
Tron has found that repeated viewing of game film is the key to good defensive play.
"There's a lot of homework at this level," he said. "Much more than I could ever have imagined. But it is necessary. The only way that you are going to be at the top of your game is to know exactly what is going on. You scout the other team until you have a good feeling for what they are going to do. It's anticipation based on knowledge."
6th round choice RB Brock Forsey from Boise State had his first NFL carry on Sunday against the Seahawks, a 5-yard run as part of a fake punt play that led to an eventual Edinger field goal.
"It was great," Forsey said. "The best part was that since I am from Idaho, many of my friends and most of my family were there tin the stadium. The play came off exactly the way we had been working on it in practice. I'm hoping that this will prove to be just the first of many more opportunities. I want to play and I feel that I can be doing a lot of positive things for the team."
For Forsey, as for many of his fellow rookies, the opportunity to make even more of an impact could be just a few days away.