Bears Pick Team Captains for 2006

The Bears elected their team captains for the 2006 season, and none of them should come as a surprise. Center Olin Kreutz and wide receiver Muhsin Muhammad lead the offense, linebacker Brian Urlacher and safety Mike Brown command the defense, and long-snapper Patrick Mannelly runs the special teams.

The Bears elected their team captains during Friday's walkthrough before travelling to Green Bay on Saturday. With the first week of the regular season finally upon us, head coach Lovie Smith announced who he will lean on to be his coaching staff on the field of battle. If you have followed the Bears at all the last few seasons, these are the names you have come to know.

C Olin Kreutz (9th season, Washington) - You don't need to ask fellow shooting range enthusiast Fred Miller who is the toughest player on the Bears roster. Kreutz has long had a reputation as one of the nastiest trench warriors in football and commands a level of respect in the locker room like few others in the NFL. Kreutz has been to five consecutive Pro Bowls and is arguably the best center in the league.

WR Muhsin Muhammad (11th season, Michigan State) - Muhammad is only in his second season with the Bears but has quickly established himself as one of the dominant personalities on the team. A former Man of the Year while with the Carolina Panthers, he is a devout family man who is married to his high school sweetheart. Moose is a two-time Pro-Bowler and ranks 31st on the NFL's all-time receptions list.

LB Brian Urlacher (7th season, New Mexico) - As if he wasn't already running out of room on his mantle, Urlacher was named the 2005 NFL Defensive Player of the Year. A smashing success in Chicago since his rookie season, he has played in the shadows of middle linebacker legends Dick Butkus and Mike Singletary and done more than hold his own. Urlacher has been to four Pro Bowls and is perhaps the biggest sports star in the Windy City.

S Mike Brown (7th season, Nebraska) - The unquestioned emotional leader of the Bears defense, Brown has shown a knack for the big play since his rookie season. He is the only player in NFL history to win two overtime games with interception return touchdowns, doing so in consecutive weeks back in 2001. Brown earned his first Pro Bowl berth last season and can deliver a hit like few safeties in football.

LS Patrick Mannelly (9th season, Duke) - One of the premier long-snappers in the game, Mannelly shares the privilege of being the longest-tenured Bear on the roster with Kreutz. Automatic on both punts and kicks, he and punter/holder Brad Maynard have developed the kind of chemistry that few teams can match. Mannelly has handled the snapping duties in all but three games during his eight-year NFL career.


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