Cap Casualties

The Bears have already made several cuts this off-season, but there are still a few vets that could be in trouble depending on how quickly young talent progresses in training camp.

After signing several players in free agency the Bears have about $1 million left under the cap.

Bryan Robinson (Defensive Tackle, 8th year, 20% chance of being cut)
Robinson signed a 5-year deal worth $20 million toward the end of the 2001 season, which saw the Bears go 13-3. Since signing the contract he's yet to live up to expectations. The Bears moved him from right end to the interior of the line last year and his impact was nonexistent. He's also had off the field issues on multiple occasions. At this point it seems as if Robinson has turned those problems around. He agreed to take a pay cut to $1.45 million this season. Still the Bears spent their first two draft choices on defensive tackles Tommie Harris and Terry "Tank" Johnson. Robinson has taken on a mentor role with Harris and Johnson. If the duo proves to Lovie Smith they're ready to play then Robinson's time in Chicago could be limited.

R.W. McQuarters (Cornerback, 7th year, 20%)
The flashy cornerback became a fixture in the secondary during 2001. His success led to a five-year contract extension worth $21 million. Since then McQuarters has been either injured or getting burned by opposing receivers. The Bears are ecstatic about the rapid development of Charles Tillman, but the aren't sure who will start on the other side. Jerry Azumah is the frontrunner with McQuarters still being given a chance to win back a job he lost last year. If McQuarters is unable to reassert himself in the starting lineup paying $2.75 million this year to a nickel corner is a stretch, even one that's a great punt returner.

Brad Maynard (Punter, 8th year, 20%)
The only reason Maynard could be in danger of being released is money. He's due $1 million this year and $1.1 next season, which is a hefty sum for a punter. The Bears have Brooks Barnard in NFL Europe and while he's done a solid job it would be a risk to rely on him heading into the season. While it appears there will be an open competition in training camp, Barnard needs a decisive victory to walk away with the job.

David Terrell (Wide Receiver, 4th year, 5%)
All indications are that this is Terrell's year to sink or swim with the Bears. He's basically been handed a starting job after being banished to the sideline by former offensive coordinator John Shoop. There have been rumors about Terrell's security in Chicago, but beyond Marty Booker the Bears don't have any other options at receiver. The rest of the group is even more inexperienced then Terrell and at a base salary of $725,000 this season he's a relative bargain. So look for the former 8th overall choice to finally get a chance.


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