Saturday, September 5, 2009
Bears: Cutdown analysis
By Kevin Seifert
Posted by ESPN.com’s Kevin Seifert
Check here for a full list of Chicago’s roster moves.
Biggest surprise: The Bears kept 11 defensive backs and nine defensive linemen. That means those two positions make up almost 40 percent of the entire roster. More than anything, the figure reflects health concerns in those areas. No one knows how much defensive tackle Tommie Harris (knee) will play, and the Bears are hoping that safety Danieal Manning (hamstring), along with cornerbacks Charles Tillman (back) and Zack Bowman (hamstring) will be ready to go. But in case they’re not, the Bears kept safeties Josh Bullocks and Craig Steltz. They also have four backup cornerbacks in Nate Vasher, Trumaine McBride, Corey Graham and rookie D.J. Moore.
No-brainers: One of the final roster battles was tailback Adrian Peterson vs. tight end Michael Gaines. But tailback Kevin Jones’ season-ending ankle injury rendered the decision moot. For now, Peterson will join Garrett Wolfe as the primary backups to Matt Forte. Gaines won a job, at least for now, as the Bears’ No. 4 tight end behind Greg Olsen, Desmond Clark and Kellen Davis.
What’s next: You wonder if the Bears are satisfied with their backfield depth or whether they’ll seek another tailback to join Wolfe and Peterson. Among the runners available is Dominic Rhodes, whom Buffalo released Saturday. Chicago will almost certainly sign a quarterback to the practice squad after releasing Brett Basanez. That’s the typical course of action for a team that keeps only two quarterbacks on the active roster.