Sunday, December 23, 2012
Bears welcome back Bennett, Jennings
By Jeff Dickerson
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- After sitting out the last two weeks, Chicago Bears cornerback Tim Jennings (shoulder) and wide receiver Earl Bennett (concussion) are active against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday, but defensive tackle Henry Melton (shoulder/chest), right tackle Jonathan Scott (hamstring) and linebacker Blake Costanzo (calf) are out.
The Bears also get back linebacker Geno Hayes and defensive end Shea McClellin, both of whom were inactive against the Green Bay Packers last Sunday.
Jennings' return to the Bears' starting lineup likely moves Kelvin Hayden back inside to the nickel back position.
Former first-round pick Gabe Carimi will replace Scott at right tackle.
Carimi, who played in just two games as a rookie last season before suffering a knee injury that required multiple procedures to correct, started the first 10 games of the season at right tackle before getting benched for performance-based reasons. But he resurfaced at right guard the last few weeks before ultimately playing himself out of that spot as well.
"I look at it this way: I can only look at myself and what I did and I don't find what I did (to be) the level I'm used to playing," Carimi said Friday. "I think next year will be a different story when I'm further away from my injury. I know I'm just playing a role right now, but I know next year I'm going to shake this all off me. I'm just going to feel good about it. I still feel like I played good football, not outstanding football, and I can take that criticism. I know that about myself. But I know I have that in me, the timing was wrong this year."
Costanzo hurt his calf during practice on Thursday and will be a big loss on special teams, where he is tied for the team lead with 11 special teams tackles.
The other Bears' inactives are quarterback Josh McCown, middle linebacker Brian Urlacher, defensive end Cheta Ozougwu and wide receiver Dane Sanzenbacher.