A day after quarterback Jordan Palmer shone during the Chicago Bears preseason finale, he found himself unemployed. Offensive tackle J’Marcus Webb, a 44 game starter in three NFL seasons but also a frequent target of Bears fans for his uneven play, was also shown the door.
Such is the harsh reality of the final roster cutdown to 53 players. The “Turk”, a fictional name given to a team’s staff person who delivers the bad news that the “coach wants to see you and bring your playbook”, is making the rounds at all 32 NFL cities.
Most of the decisions revolving around the Bears final roster began to take shape within the last two weeks, but it’s still a day that both coaches and players on the bubble dread.
Palmer’s exit, along with the release of fellow veteran QB Trent Edward, signals the Bears may elect to go with two QB’s initially, with the intent on signing and developing a younger prospect on the practice squad. The team worked out a handful of QB’s on Tuesday, including former Vanderbilt signal caller Jordan Rodgers, the younger brother of Packers standout Aaron Rodgers.
Second-year safety Brandon Hardin, the Bears third-round pick in 2012, was also cut. Hardin, who missed his final season in college at Oregon State due to injury, suffered a season-ending neck injury in Bears camp last summer, and was never able to showcase the athletic skills and playmaking ability the club envisioned. The Bears may explore further help at safety and tight end as players become available through other team’s cuts.
Among the other players released were running back Armando Allen, who lost a training camp competition with undrafted free agent Michael Ford, third-year RB Harvey Unga, a supplementary draft pick from 2010, tight end Fendi Onobun, who suffered through a mistake-plagued preseason filled with several drops, and veteran backup offensive lineman Edwin Williams. The Bears also cut CB Demontre Hurst, who may be a candidate for the practice squad following a solid preseason showing.
The Bears still need to pare five other playerrs before reaching the NFL limit. Below is a complete listing of the players let go:
PLAYER POS UNIVERSITY
Armando Allen RB Notre Dame
Derek Dennis G Temple
Jerry Franklin LB Arkansas
Brittan Golden WR West Texas A&M
Brandon Hartson LS Houston
Demontre Hurst CB Oklahoma
Josh Lenz WR Iowa State
Tom Nelson S Illinois State
Fendi Onobun TE Houston
Christian Tupou DT Southern California
Harvey Unga FB Brigham Young
J’Marcus Webb T West Texas A&M
Aston Whiteside DE Abilene Christian
Josh Williams DE Kansas
The Bears terminated the contracts of the following three vested veterans:
PLAYER POS UNIVERSITY
Trent Edwards QB Stanford
Jordan Palmer QB Texas El Paso
Edwin Williams G Maryland
The Chicago Bears roster now stands at 58 active players. The Bears must reduce their active roster to a maximum of 53 players by 4PM EST tomorrow, Saturday August 31.