Clark Pro Bowl Bound

The Bears received recognition throughout the season and the acknowledgment keeps coming even in the off-season. As Wednesday brought another Pro Bowl nod, three other Bears decided to withdraw from the game.

TE Desmond Clark became the seventh different member of the team to be named to the Pro Bowl squad. His 24 receptions for 229 yards and two touchdowns are far from lofty numbers, but the seven-year veteran was added to the roster as a need player. Along with playing tight end, Clark has the ability to long snap. He was initially named a third team Pro Bowl alternate.

Clark joins strong safety Mike Brown, linebacker Lance Briggs, defensive tackle Tommie Harris and cornerback Nathan Vasher as first time Pro Bowlers.

Linebacker Brian Urlacher and center Olin Kreutz were both named to the squad for the fifth time in their careers. Urlacher, Kreutz and Harris were slated to start for the NFC in the Feb. 12 matchup against the AFC All-Stars.

However, Urlacher, Kreutz and Brown decided to drop out of the Pro Bowl. It's unclear whether or Urlacher is making a personal choice to skip the festivities or his hampered by an injury. Brown is still bothered by a calf problem, while Kreutz finished the season on a sprained ankle.

A pair of teammates will replace Urlacher and Kreutz. Seattle Seahawks linebacker Lofa Tatupu and center Robbie Tobeck will head to Honolulu next month. Eagles safety Brian Dawkins fills the void left by Brown's absence.

With seven Pro Bowlers, the Bears are tied with the Colts and Seahawks for the most in the NFL. The total is the highest by the franchise since the 1986 campaign when tackle Jim Covert, safety Dave Duerson, linebacker Wilbur Marshall, defensive tackle Steve McMichael, center Jay Hilgenberg, running back Walter Payton and linebacker Mike Singletary were chosen.

Mark Your Calendar
The Bears have announced that their ninth annual Fan Convention will be held March 3-5, at the Hilton Chicago.

The event features autograph sessions throughout the weekend. Fans will have a chance to interact with president and CEO Ted Phillips and head coach Lovie Smith.

Fans can also question coordinators Ron Turner (offense), Ron Rivera (defense) and Dave Toub (special teams). Other seminars deal with a variety of topics, including the upcoming draft, scouting opponents and football equipment.

There's a kids zone where children can participate in clinics, meet players and play inflatable games. There's also a kids-only autograph session, an arcade where kids can play video games with current Bears players and a mascot football game hosted by Staley.

So far current players that are tentatively scheduled to attend the event include, DE Alex Brown, WR Justin Gage, OL Roberto Garza, K Robbie Gould, S Chris Harris, P Brad Maynard and QB Kyle Orton.

Bear Report will be in attendance all weekend long to bring you the latest news from the convention. It should be a busy time considering the start of free agency will coincide with the first day of the festivities.

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