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August 29, 12:30 PM ET
Chat with Jeff Dickerson

Buzzmaster
  (11:43 AM)

Sorry, folks, looks like we're not having a Bears chat today.

Buzzmaster
  (12:02 PM)

Just kidding. Jeff Dickerson will be by at 11:30 a.m. CT/12:30 p.m. ET to chat.

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:36 PM)

Sorry, I'm a little late. Had to pop on the air with the Chester Taylor news. Let's get after it.

Mo (Chicago)

Matt Forte looks good, but more importantly to his wallet, he looks vital. What should/will his new deal look like?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:39 PM)

Mo, If I had to guess, I'd say the Bears go no higher than $15 M guranteed. Forte's camp is looking at the DeAngelo Williams number which is $21 M guaranteed. When it comes to these deals, the only number that really matters in guaranteed cash, especially for a RB, because the position is so violent. So, if the deal gets done, expect the guaranteed number to be around $15M. I think that's the best Forte can do.

Dr. H. Doofenshmirtz (Tri-State Area)

Are Okoye and Melton the starting defensive tackles? Also--Melton is a force in the middle, why are they thinking about moving him to end?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:40 PM)

Not yet. Okoye looks like a pure three technique DT, which is the position Melton currently plays. The Bears started Melton and Toeaina Saturday night. That could very well the starting DT combination Week 1 vs. Atlanta.

masterjedi (north dakota)

I'm a little concerned about the DE position. We know Pep and Izzy are good to go, but Gholston hasn't really shown much and Wooten is still hurt. That just leaves Addison to balance out that rotation doesn't it?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:42 PM)

Marinelli likes Addison. He seems to have the best shot to be the #3 DE if Wootton is unable to begin the regular season. I just haven't seen anything from Vernon Gholston.

Jordan (Algonquin, IL)

Is Kyle Adams going to make the roster? Considering the injury to Dez?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:43 PM)

I think Kyle Adams had a strong chance to make the roster even before Dez got hurt. Adams is playing on almost every phase on special teams, which is a good indication the Bears are planning the keep him on the final 53.

Kieran Murphy (Chicago)

I haven't been able to watch much of the preseason this year (sad but true), and i've been curious how Joshua Moore has looked thus far, I know the coaching staff was talking him up leading up to camp.

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:44 PM)

There are some in the building who believe Joshua Moore might be the best pure cover corner on the team. However, he still needs to add muscle to his frame. He's had some ups and down so far in camp.

Chris (Minnesota)

How come Earl Bennet's name does not come up more often in WR's who should start for the Bears? He is our best receiver and yes I am quoting you!

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:45 PM)

The Bears are expected to use 3 WRs sets for much of the season. Bennett is the slot guy, so basically, he is a starter. He is the Bears best receiver....feel free to quote me!!!

JK (Columbus, OH)

JD,What have you seen from Chris Williams in camp and in the games that gives you reason for optimism (if you have any)? Do you see any signs that he could really excel at Left Guard? The first round is a high price to pay for a LG.

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:48 PM)

JK- Toughest thing for a reporter to do is breakdown guard/center play. There is so much going on inside, unless you know exactly what the call is, you can't really say for certain if a guy did well or he messed up. That being said, Mike Tice has been pleased with Chris Williams at LG. If Tice is happy, that means Williams is doing a pretty good job. Tice is usually pretty honest about that stuff.

Lance Briggs (Chicago)

Are multiple contract disputes/controversies going to taint my legacy in Chicago?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:50 PM)

No. You will be remember as a great player, which you are. But I don't see how you are going to squeeze a new contract out of the Bears or force your way out of town. But I forgive you!

Blake (Chicago)

Hello JD, what do you think of the O-line's perceived improvement in the last game? Smoke and mirrors? Or a step in the right direction? Will they be ready for Atlanta?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:51 PM)

Blake - O line is moving in the right direction. However, let's all keep in mind this is the preseason. Opposing defenses aren't throwing complex stuff at them yet. The real test will be Week 1 vs. Atlanta. So operating under that premise, the offensive line is getting better with their communication and run blocking. But they're not a finished product yet. No way.

Rick (Roselle)

Any idea what's going on with Harvey Unga? I thought he was a shrewd pickup in the supplemental draft last year and that he even looked good against the Bills. Is he a definite cut or do they stash him on the practice squad?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:53 PM)

I guess I wouldn't rule out the practice squad. But he has no shot to make the 53 man roster. He's been away because of personal reasons, so I respect the man's privacy. He actually did a decent job in the first preseason game vs. Buffalo. What a shame it turned out this week. Bears wasted a draft pick on Unga.

Darrell (Chicago)

Come regular season, how stubborn will Martz be? I hope I don't see Roy Williams continue to be an every down player while Earl Bennett is only brought in on passing situations.

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:54 PM)

The Bears won't let Martz be stubborn. If Williams is a dog, and Knox is playing better, they will make a chance. And I also expect the Bears to run the ball in a balanced fashion like they did in the second half last year.

jason (Libertyville)

Great job covering the Bears Jeff. Do you see the Bears pursuing some players that could be cut by other teams to add some depth?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:55 PM)

I think the Bears are still in the market for linebackers.

Phil (Chicago)

Does Sazenbacher even make the field this year on offense? Or will he just be a special teams kinda guy?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:56 PM)

If Sanzenbacher makes the 53, he probably will see the field on offense, because his lack of size does not make him an ideal fit on special teams. But I still think the Bears are leaning towards keeping 6 WRs, and Sanzenbacher is the 6th.

Mike (Chicago)

Whatever happened to Hunter Hillenmeyer? Did he retire or is he hoping he can play again at some point?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:57 PM)

I think Hillenmeyer is finished playing in the NFL. Had an excellent career.

Fabian (Chicago)

who will be the starting safteys in 2012 ?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:58 PM)

Based on Lovie's track record, it will not be Major Wright and Chris Harris. He changes the starters at that position every year.

Thad (Peoria)

Hey Jeffery; What ever happened to the news about some of the Bears possible FA signings? Like Tatupu or Kelvin Hayden? I am sure that were not signing either of them now but I never heard any news about them since the original reports. Do you think you could clear some of that up?

Jeff Dickerson
  (12:59 PM)

Hayden idea is dead because the Bears had concerns over his long-term health. Tatupu interest wasn't shared by the coaching staff. The questioned whether or not he could play OLB.

Jason (Chicago Sailor stationed in San Diego)

JD, what's up with Lance Briggs and the whole "wanting a raise" thing? Are we gonna see a repeat of a few years back when the Bears put the franchise tag on him and he threatened to hold-out if his demands weren't met (obviously no need for the franchise tag this time, but you get my point)?

Jeff Dickerson
  (1:02 PM)

I'm a huge Briggs fan, but he had his shot in unrestricted free agency, and he got paid. That was what the market decided was his price. Plus, he got the franchise tag tender the year before. Lance has made a lot of money in the league, and he deserves it. But a new deal, I don't think so.

Jeff Dickerson
  (1:10 PM)

Sorry everybody. Besides telling Chester Taylor he's gone, Bears release Vernon Gholston, Tank Tyler, Tanner Antle, J.C. Brignone, Trevor Vittatoe.

Jeff Dickerson
  (1:10 PM)

Have a great rest of the day, Heading to the locker room.