Mannelly recognized for excellence

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- You can make an argument that Chicago Bears long snapper Patrick Mannelly has done his job better, for longer, than anybody at Halas Hall since 1998.

The dependable veteran was recently named to the USA Football/NFLPA All-Fundamentals Team, and the Bears held a press conference Wednesday where special teams coach Dave Toub presented Mannelly with the award.

Twenty-six NFL players (11 offense, 11 defense, 4 special teams) are given this distinction based on an ability to consistently execute the fundamentals of their positions, and for making a positive impact in their communities.

Mannelly operates a website -- www.longsnapper.com -- to help teach younger players proper long-snapping fundamentals and techniques.

"Most long-snappers, we don't want to be known, so it's kind of weird for me to be standing up here," Mannelly said. "We never talk to the media, which is a good thing."

But Toub was not afraid to talk to the media about Mannelly.

"He's so humble, he's the machine that makes the whole thing work for us," Toub said.

It warrants mentioning again that Mannelly is operating in the final year of a six-year extension signed back in 2005. At 35, Mannelly shows no signs of slowing down, and it would be wise for the Bears to lock him up for a few more seasons.

"As long as the guys upstairs, the general managers in the NFL think I can do it, and as long as my body can hold up, I'm hoping to continue a few more years," Mannelly said.