Scouting the Newest Bears

The Bears have made two additions to the practice squad this week. Here's a scouting report of WR Craig Bragg and LB T.J. Hollowell.

The Bears signed Bragg to the practice squad Wednesday. The 6-1, 195-pound rookie was a sixth round draft choice (195th overall) by the Green Bay Packers.

A four-year starter at UCLA, Bragg's college totals included 193 receptions for 2,845 yards (14.7 ypc) and 19 touchdowns. He also returned 87 punts for an 11.0-yard average and two touchdowns as well as 11 kickoffs for an 18.8-yard average.

Craig Bragg School: UCLA
Ht: 6-0.5 Wt: 196 40: 4.51

Bio: Three-year starter who's led the Bruins in receiving since his sophomore campaign. Struggled with injuries as a senior and totaled just 36/483/4 as a receiver, also averaged 15 yards on 19 punt returns, adding another touchdown. Junior totals included career receiving numbers of 73/1,065/5 after 55/889/8 as a sophomore.

Positives: Efficient pass catcher with a good feel for the position. Quick getting to top speed, displays excellent focus, with the ability to make the difficult, over-the-shoulder catch when fully covered. Adjusts well to the errant throw, quick transitioning to run after the reception and an effective body catcher when necessary. Sharp route runner who gets separation from breaks, then uses his frame to shield away opponents. Alert prospect who consistently finds the open space in the defense. Impacts the game returning punts.

Negatives: Not strong, has difficulty getting off jams at the line of scrimmage or battling to make the reception. Must improve his blocking. Lacks deep speed and a second gear.

Analysis: Solid yet unspectacular in many areas, Bragg looks like a perfect fit as a fourth receiver in the NFL whose bread and butter will be returning punts.

The Bears signed Hollowell to the practice squad Thursday. The linebacker comes to Chicago from Miami where he was inactive for two games after being claimed by the Dolphins on Nov. 22 off waivers from the New York Jets. The second-year player appeared in four games with the New York Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2004,

T.J. Hollowell School Nebraska
Ht: 6-0.5 Wt: 235 40: 4.58 Pos: OLB

Bio: Became a full-time starter as a senior and finished with 80 tackles, 8 for loss, 1.5 sacks, 2 interceptions and 8 passes defended. Junior totals were 60 tackles, 2 for loss and one sack.

Positive: Athletic defender that spent time at all three linebacker positions in college. Displays excellent range and pursues well laterally. Outstanding defending the run outside of tackle, redirects to the ball carrier and has a closing burst of speed. Effectively uses his hands to shed blocks, gets adequate depth on pass drops and covers tight ends or running backs.

Negative: Not a sudden defender who flashes on the scene. Only average instincts in pass defense and bites on the play action pass.

Analysis: Built for the weakside, Hollowell has the explosion and speed needed to play the position at the next level. A hard worker that does the little things off the field to improve his game, Hollowell should also be a solid special teams player.


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