Bears Notes

ST. LOUIS _ The reverse Thomas Jones ran in Thursday night's 13-10 preseason win over St. Louis involved no double handoff, but make no mistake.<P> It was a reverse.

The Bears' free agent running back acquisition went around right end on third-and-one from the Bears' 49-yard line, found the traffic heavy and changed direction completely, heading around left end instead. The end result was a 26-yard run that helped the Bears on the way to a 3-0 lead.

"There wasn't much going on the right side and the defense was filling real fast over there," Jones said. "So I just stopped and came back to the other side.

"A lot of times in the NFL defenses are so fast they overpursue. Sometimes you're lucky enough to find that the back side is wide open."

It was, but partly because of his quarterback. Rex Grossman got downfield and while he didn't put DeJuan Groce to the turf, he took the Rams' defensive back out of the play to spring Jones.

"I never really was taught how to block at Florida or anywhere," Grossman said, laughing.

Jones appreciated seeing the Bears' passer giving himself up.

"I was trying to read the block," Jones said. "I wasn't sure which way he was going to block him. But he gave good effort."

The run highlighted Jones' 53-yard night on seven carries. He also ran 17 yards on a draw.

"I would characterize him as a speed back," Bears center Olin Kreutz said of Jones, who received a four-year, $10 million deal in free agency to leave Tampa. "You look at his ability, he's a powerful guy, too. He can run you over, too. Thomas is a total package."

Rex Grossman liked the fit in his first game running coordinator Terry Shea's new attack, Grossman was efficient

"Everything felt good for me out there," Grossman said. "I like it a lot. I feel like if I go through my progressions there is always a completion and that helps move the sticks a little bit.

"We didn't test them down the field very much but that will come."

Grossman had a 99.2 passer rating for his 4-of-5 effort, including three passes 10 yards or longer.

Craig Krenzel went 4-of-7 for 33 yards and Jonathan Quinn 11-of-16 for 120 yards in extensive second- and third-quarter playing time.

The Bears' first string defensive ends struggled in their pass rush again, but their reserves showed promise.

Israel Idonije, a free agent acquisition who played football in Canada, had two sacks for 15 yards and Alain Kashama produced a few hurries.

"Alain Kashama and Israel Idonije have both shown flashes of being really good pass rushers," Bears coach Lovie Smith said. "We expect that of them and we wanted to give them a little time early and they were able to do that."

Bears team officials have notified media members covering the team that Smith's policy is not to allow reporters access to offensive and defensive coordinators after games.

The coordinators will be available only at practice.

Also, television reporters have been notified they cannot speak to players on the field during warm-ups prior to games.

Wide receiver Bobby Wade left with an elbow laceration and didn't return, but team officials said he could have returned if it had been a regular-season game.

Tackle Aaron Gibson was scheduled to miss the game due to knee soreness. However, he came on the field with second- and third-string linemen in the third quarter. He said the knee soreness comes and goes and was fine Thursday night.

Smith came under fire for his stringent training methods, which some believe led directly to numerous pulled muscles at the outset of camp.

When the injuries first occurred, the Bears coach said players would simply have to get used to his training methods.

Now he says he foresaw the muscle pulls.

"The first week you should have muscle pulls, the guys should be tired," Smith said. "And then you start pulling back (on hard workouts) as you get closer to the games."

The entire Bears team stayed at the St. Louis Ritz, which happened to be where the cast from American Idol was staying for a regional competition.

Bears resident rapper R.W. McQuarters was spotted in discussion with Paul Abdul at the hotel.

No word available on Simon Cowell's grades for McQuarters' cornerback play, though.

Also staying in the hotel were Ozzie Osborne and Black Sabbath.

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