Preview of things to come

Bourbonnais - While Rex Grossman only had one drive in the preseason opener, the quarterback is starting look like he's mature beyond his years.

Grossman completed 4-of-5 pass for 39 yards on his way to leading the team to three points. He also had a TD pass to Bryan Johnson negated by a holding penalty on Mike Gandy.

At some point the deep ball will work into the gameplan, but due to pressure in the pocket Grossman had to go to shorter routes.

"You'll see Rex put the ball up the field, that's just luck of the draw. At least he's not forcing the ball up the field when he's checking it down," said offensive coordinator Terry Shea.

Grossman's quick decisions under duress led to completions of 10, 12 and 15 yards. The intermediate pass is an important part of the offense and has been missing in years past.

"He did a nice job. We always have a progression. That's what makes him to quick-armed and quick-minded," Shea said.

Finish with a bang: The Bears capped off a spirited afternoon of practice Saturday with a 10-yard bullet from QB Jonathan Quinn to WR Daryl Jones, whose acrobatic sideline catch was greeted with a round of applause from the fans.

Working overtime: Bernard Berrian and the special teams unit practiced numerous kickoff returns, the rookie seemed to lack the some of the speed that he had shown earlier in camp.

"It's all a matter of timing and experience," Berrian said. "I know that it is important for me to pick this up quickly as long as (Jerry) Azumah is out. Just being out here on the field is a good thing. So much of this is in the physical reps you want to practice until it becomes second nature. There is additional pressure on me to perform, but that's fine. It's why I'm here."

On the mend: Brian Urlacher watched practice from the sidelines but also spent time in the defensive huddle. Tuesday will mark the three-week period since he went down with a hamstring injury. Whether he's ahead of the four to six week recovery timeframe is hard to say.

"It wasn't a season-ending injury. We know that he'll be back," Smith said. "He thinks he's a little closer than we probably do. But it's good to have him back."

Excused absence: R.W. McQuarters missed practiced Saturday for personal reasons.


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