Training Camp Report: Day 2

The Chicago Bears didn't have first-round draft pick Chris Williams in the mix for very long, as the rookie left practice early on with a back injury. And the hits just keep on coming. Bear Report had a front-row seat Thursday for all the action in Bourbonnais and made these observations ...

Pick Six
If you're looking for meticulously managed quarterback-battle statistics, then you've come to the right place. Thursday was Kyle Orton's turn to direct the first-team offense, and he was average at best during 7-on-7 drills completing 7 of 12 passes – one of which was easily intercepted by Hunter Hillenmeyer on a sideline pattern to Greg Olsen that was overthrown. But Orton was sharp in 11-on-11 action, connecting on 14 of 18 throws and finishing off the day's work with a missile to Rashied Davis deep down the right sideline that he took away from Corey Graham. Rex Grossman seemed to be at his best early on in 7-on-7 as he hit on 7 of 8 attempts, most notably a corner route to Mike Hass – although he bobbled the ball and almost dropped it. Grossman threw only six passes during 11-on-11, but he also hit Davis on a fly pattern when the former arena leaguer lined up slot-left and blew past rookie Zack Bowman. ...

Newly signed first-round pick Chris Williams didn't stay on the practice field very long Thursday, as the 14th-overall selection tweaked his back during positional drills and wasn't able to continue. Head coach Lovie Smith downplayed the injury when speaking to the media after the last period of the day, choosing to err on the side of caution just in case. In Williams' place, undrafted free agent Cody Balogh got the second-team reps at left tackle while seventh-rounder Kirk Barton lined up on the right side. ...

Robbie Gould inked the most lucrative deal in football history for a kicker during the offseason, and deservedly so, but the rockstar-popular youngster is still yet to split the uprights from beyond 50 yards in his career. During special-teams drills, Gould was money from both hashmarks all the way out to 48 yards. Nevertheless, with two attempts from 53, his first one came up a bit short and he yanked the second one wide left. ...

For some ridiculous reason, the coaching staff is going through the silly charade of giving Adrian Peterson the primary snap of each period with the starting offense, while Matt Forte works in later and usually gets just as many reps – if not more. The team drafted Forte in Round 2 and signed Kevin Jones in free agency in part because of Peterson's deficiencies on offense, and it's not like he's the kind of player who's going to have his ego crushed if Forte moves ahead of him on the depth chart. Making rookies earn their keep is one thing, but don't do it just for the sake of doing it. ...

Terrence Metcalf is still scheduled to be the starting left guard, although you would not have known it watching 9-on-9 drills – that's when the receivers and corners are taken off the field and nothing but run plays get called. Metcalf wound up square on his keister after the very first snap, getting blasted by Anthony Adams right up the gut. It's only been two days, but there is a lot more hitting out here than we've gotten use to seeing the last few years down here in Bourbonnais, most notably a square-in-the-mouth shot from Jamar Williams to Forte. ...

As far as the rookies are concerned, Earl Bennett continues to impress and made some more highlight-reel catches Thursday to add to the ones he had Wednesday. Caleb Hanie delivered a pretty throw to close out 7-on-7 action, a flag to Bennett toward the right sideline after the former Vanderbilt Commodore beat Trey Brown. And Kellen Davis followed up Wednesday's strong showing with another solid outing Thursday, reeling in a pass from Grossman a step ahead of Michael Okwo down the seam.


WR Earl Bennett
Rex Arbogast/AP Images

Injury Report
Olin Kreutz was a spectator once again Thursday as he continues to struggle with an Achilles injury, and there doesn't seem to be any timetable for his return. Jones was running on the side early on, which is a good sign since he didn't lift a finger Wednesday. On another positive note, Mark Bradley looks close to 100 percent and even caught a beauty of a ball from Orton on a flag pattern to the left – on top of Graham and underneath Brandon McGowan.

Stud of the Day
This receiving corps isn't going to make any NFL defensive back nervous right now, but Davis is the second consecutive pass-catcher to garner Stud-of-the-Day honors after Bennett the day before. Not only does Davis look a little bigger and a lot stronger than ever thanks to a dedicated workout regimen that he started earlier in the offseason than usual, but he's also showing some serious burst. He made the two biggest plays of the day, a bomb from Grossman down the left side and then another bomb from Orton down the right side – both would have gone for scores.

Dud of the Day
Can you imagine an offensive line – preseason game, regular season game, or otherwise – of John St. Clair at left tackle, Metcalf at left guard, Josh Beekman at center, Roberto Garza at right guard, and John Tait at right tackle? The Midway Monsters would be lucky to average the league-worst 3.1 yards per carry they posted last season with that quintet, so Kreutz needs to get back in a hurry and Williams' back injury had better be minor. But the Dud of the Day has to be Metcalf, who has no more excuses for his poor play and doesn't look worthy of a starting spot after two practices.

Quote to Note
"It's just staying focused and going out there and staying in your playbook and listening to the coaches. They're going to help you out. They're going to put you in the best position possible to succeed. So every time I get out there, I've just got to take advantage of my chance." – WR Earl Bennett on how he can make a quick transition from college to the pros, as he did from high school to college.

John Crist is the Publisher of Bear Report and a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. To read him every day, visit BearReport.com and become a Chicago Bears insider.


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