Bears O-Line Looks For Bounce-Back Year

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Editor’s Note: Continuing series examining the Bears position groups prior to training camp. This is the last story on the offensive side of the ball.

By Connor Curts, Associate Editor

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If the Chicago Bears want to be a playoff contender for the 2015 season, or even years to come after that, they’re going to have to put the O back in Chicago, and that starts with the offensive line. They’re coming off of a season in whi

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ch they were in the lower half of the league for sacks allowed at 41, and gained just 1,441 rushing yards, which was 6th worst in the league.

After releasing Roberto Garza, who played for the team from 2005-2014, the Bears will need to find a new center, and this offseason they signed Will Montgomery while drafting Hroniss Grasu from Oregon. Montgomery likely has the upper-hand in this position battle due to the fact he came from Denver after playing under John Fox for a season and that he has 10 years of experience. But if he’s giving up sacks and making poor snaps resulting in fumbles, Fox should have him on a short leash.

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Jeffery looks to fill big WR shoes with Bears

105Continuing series on Chicago Bears position groups heading into training camp.

By Connor Curts, Associate Editor
With Brandon Marshall – the Bears’ clear number one receiver for the past few seasons – being traded to the New York Jets by the new management regime, experts and fans are looking to Alshon Jeffery to be the team’s new go-to guy.

Jeffery is entering his 4th season with the Bears, and his contract is up at the end of the season, so he has to prove his worth. He’s certainly shown he has what it takes, making many highlight reel catches, but will he continue his success now that defenses will be able to focus more attention on him? Going up and catching the ball in traffic isn’t a tough task for Jeffery, but he’ll definitely be doing it a lot more often.

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Bears shuffle roster as mini-camp ends

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Before the Chicago Bears embarked on a brief summer vacation following the conclusion of the team’s mandatory mini-camp, the team made a series of personnel moves toward the bottom of the 90-man roster. The Bears added veteran safety Sherrod Martin and running back Daniel Thomas for additional depth at those respective positions. One roster spot remains open.

The club’s official announcement follows:

The Chicago Bears signed S Sherrod Martin and RB Daniel Thomas to one-year contracts and waived K Jeremiah Detmer, QB Pat Devlin and TE Jacob Maxwell. Martin and Thomas both had tryouts for the Bears during this past week’s minicamp.

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Bears Forte expected to carry a heavy load

Matt Forte loosens up as he prepares for an important 2015 season.

Matt Forte loosens up as he prepares for an important 2015 season.

Editor’s Note: This is the second part of a series examining the Chicago Bears roster as they prepare for training camp in late July.

By Connor Curts, Associate Editor

The 2015 season will be an important one concerning the future of the Bears’ running back position.

Matt Forte is entering a contract year, in which he will be paid a base salary of $7,050,000, and working for a new contract. Back in April, Forte was absent from the team’s first voluntary offseason workouts, fueling media speculation that he was holding out to gain contract negotiation leverage. On April 28 Forte took to social media to set things straight, and made it known that he was finishing his third week of “rigorous speed training” which he says the Bears “do not do at Halas Hall.”

A full participant since in the Bears OTA’s and mini-camp,  Forte is an underappreciated back who matter of factly understands that this may be his last season in Chicago. Few backs demonstrate the versatility Forte displays or are as consistent as the former Tulane Green Wave star has shown. Thus far, Forte’s held up to a rigorous workload that figures to increase with new head coach John Fox’s preferred reliance on the ground attack.

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