Youth Movement

Lake Forest - The Bears had to cut 20 players to get down to the 53-man roster. It's hard to tell what impact cutting a player will have on the season, but there are definitely a few moves that raised an eyebrow.

Salary cap space played a role in cutting Bryan Robinson in favor of keeping Ian Scott When the Bears signed Adewale Ogunleye they used a large portion of any room they had left and as injuries are bound to happen during a season having something in reserve to pick a player or two is common practice.

"That was part of it but certainly not all of it," said GM Jerry Angelo.

The emergence of Tommie Harris also made the Bears decision easier. The first-round pick has taken a large step forward in the past two weeks and will be in the starting lineup a week from today.

"With a guy that can play like that, it doesn't matter how old he is," Lovie Smith said. "As he told me, he's just getting into the groove right now."

The Bears feel that Scott can be an effective run stuffer. At 6-foot-2, 305 pounds he isn't the typical fit for Smith's penetrating style defense because he lacks speed and pass rushing ability.

In general the defensive line presented the toughest choices. The Canadian connection of Alain Kashama and Israel Idonije both made the squad as long shots heading into training camp.

The fact that Idonije can play both end and tackle gives the Bears some flexibility.

"Am I ready to say that he's ready for Hawaii or canton, no, but we certainly like the traits of the player and we just liked his progress and feel that his best days are ahead of him," Angelo said.

One of the odder choices came in the secondary. The Bears will carry five safeties into the season, when it appeared it would come down to choosing between Cameron Worrell and Todd Johnson. However the team considers Mike Green a swingman between strong safety and nickel back responsibilities.

The Bears will carry five receivers with Daryl Jones beating out veteran Ahmad Merritt for the final spot.

"Every decision that we made, the players separated themselves," Smith said. "We felt real good about Daryl for a time."

Jones is likely to handle the kickoff responsibilities for the team, as he averaged 29.3 per attempt in the preseason.

Brock Forsey became a fan favorite as a rookie, but will not return for a second season in Chicago. With Anthony Thomas sitting out the entire preseason, Forsey and Adrian Peterson got a chance to state their cases on the field.

Peterson averaged 4.6 yards per carry and reached the end zone three times.

Smith said he expects Thomas to practice this week and possibly play in the season opener against Detroit.

Teams are still inquiring about the availability of the two-time 1,000-yard rusher.

"I feel that that will continue to happen, early on in the season because it's been talked about in the off-season and carried on, but again we haven't made any plans to trade Anthony," Angelo said.

The Bears placed tackle Marc Colombo on the reserve/physically unable to perform list and placed tight end Gabe Reid on injured reserve due to a knee injury suffered in the preseason finale at Cleveland.

The team has until Monday 3:00 p.m. CST to create an eight-man practice squad. The number was expanded from five this year and the bulk of the players will be from among the final roster cuts.

Players Waived Rabih Abdullah RB
Blue Adams CB
Bryan Anderson OL
Brooks Barnard P
Aaron Boone WR
Jeremy Cain LB
Quinn Dorsey DE
Vontez Duff CB
Andre Forde WR
Brock Forsey RB
Michael Keathley OL
Bryan Knight LB
Alfonso Marshall CB
Ahmad Merritt WR
Shurron Pierson DE
Mike Pinkard TE
Bryan Robinson DT
Jerry Schumacher LB
Josh Warner OL
Cliff Washburn DE


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