Will the Bears keep a fullback?
BOURBONNAIS, Ill. -- When Mike Martz arrived in Chicago last offseason, the Bears moved away from keeping a traditional fullback on the 53-man roster, and instead broke camp with four tight ends. With three preseason games left on the schedule, it's unclear if the team plans to go the same route this fall.
If the Bears opt to carry a fourth tight end, the leading candidate for the fullback/H Back role could be undrafted rookie free agent Kyle Adams. The Purdue product is expected to receive significant playing time Monday night versus the New York Giants, both on offense and special teams.
Both Williams and Ta'ufo'ou seem to be enjoying productive camps, and each player brings a little something different to the table.
Williams, the first string fullback on the Bears camp depth chart, spent the 2010 season on the Bears practice squad after being drafted in the seventh round by the Redskins in 2009. Williams showed the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield during his four-year college career at Idaho (100 receptions, 1,205 yards and 11 touchdowns), but by his own admission, needed to improve as a blocker.
So Williams spent the summer adding muscle to improve his production in the blocking department.
"I put on a lot of weight, I was lighter last year and much more raw," Williams said earlier in the week. "This year I'm dialed in a little more and feel more controlled.'
"It's been fun (getting first team reps) because the best thing is getting to play against a good defense every day in practice, some of the top linebackers and defensive linemen, and actually knowing what it's like to face a good team is really helpful."
On the flip side, Ta'ufo'ou, also a veteran of the Bears practice squad, might not be as athletic as Williams, but the 5-foot-11, 247-pound fullback is a physical and powerful blocker.
Since there probably is only room for one of the three players on the final roster, the next three preseason contests against the Giants, Titans and Browns should determine who grabs the final spot amongst the backs/tight ends.