On the Job Training for Williams

Bears fourth-round draft choice, linebacker Jamar Williams, said he won't be intimidated by playing with Pro Bowl linebackers Brian Urlacher and Lance Briggs, whom he played against in college.

"I'm going in and trying to soak up as much knowledge as I can from those guys," Williams said. "I know I'm going to have a great opportunity to learn a lot from those guys because they have already established themselves. I look at it as a positive. I'm going to try to stick on their side and try to follow them around and try to learn the ropes from them."

The three-year starter has played on the strong side and the weak side, with eight career interceptions.

"I liked the way he attacked the line of scrimmage and played downhill into his gap," defensive coordinator Ron Rivera said. "He (uses) his hands extremely well. I saw a lot of good separation and an ability to shed and get off blocks. He had a knack for slipping the blockers, too. Instead of getting stuck or taking a guy on and getting tied up, you would see him get up, present his shoulder and then all of a sudden drop and get underneath the blocker. Things you look for in our system are guys who can run, guys who can slip blocks and then get into their crease and maintain their position."

Williams' ability to also move inside at six-foot, 250-pounds will be of great value over the course of the season. Depth at linebacker was an issue last season when Joe Odom and Marcus went down in training camp. Williams can backup any of the three linebacker spots and could even challenge Hunter Hillenmeyer for a starting job.

Dreaming the Dream
Tight end Zach Puchtel participated in last weekend's rookie mini-camp, even though he wasn't drafted by the Bears.

He wasn't even signed as a free agent like fellow rookie tight ends Tim Day and Cooper Wallace. Puchtel hasn't played football in four years, not since he was a freshman at Harvard.

"Yeah, it's a long shot," admitted the 6-foot-6, 250-pound Puchtel, who played basketball for two years at Harvard and then at Minnesota for three years.

When basketball season ended, he was planning on going back to Harvard and finishing his degree. But a couple teams NFL teams contacted Puchtel to find out if I he was interested in giving football a try.

"I'm in the best shape of my life right now," he said. "I figured if there was a time to go for it, it was now. I understand the possibility isn't that great, but there is a shot and I had to take it."


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