Open Competition

There will be jobs won and lost during Lovie Smith's first training camp, and some of them will be starting jobs at positions that will be crucial to the success of the new regime.

Smith has a good idea of who will be competing for certain jobs after three minicamps and 14 OTAs, but he claims he hasn't made any permanent decisions yet.

"I think that's all we've done right now is really establish who will be competing for the different jobs," Smith said. "You can't really move the depth chart around too much until the guys get in pads. We're anxious to get in pads and see exactly where they are then, but we have good competition at a lot of positions."

Smith listed offensive left tackle, cornerback and wide receiver as positions that are up for grabs, but he should have also mentioned strong safety.

At left tackle Qasim Mitchell gets first crack at the job, but if he can't handle it, Mike Gandy could be switched back there from his natural guard position or John Tait could move over from right tackle.

At cornerback, Jerry Azumah and R.W. McQuarters will again battle to start opposite Charles Tillman. Both have had their moments in the past, but both have also had costly coverage and tackling lapses, too.

At wide receiver, David Terrell needs to play with much more urgency and attention to detail or he will disappear down the depth chart behind second-year players Justin Gage and Bobby Wade, free-agent pickup Daryl Jones and rookie Bernard Berrian.

The strong safety position is a tossup between Mike Green, who is better in coverage, and Bobby Gray, who is a more physical presence against the run.

"We have a lot of competition that's going to happen once we get to camp," Smith said.

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