I had a wonderful afternoon in Bourbonnais yesterday watching the Chicago Bears training camp. I decided to focus on the wide receivers and quarterbacks. I spent time watching the seven-on-seven drills (skill positions on offense…cover guys on defense) along with the other general drills. Here’s what I took away from the experience…
-Offensive coordinator Mike Martz spent most of the early part of practice working with Jay Cutler on footwork and vision downfield. I wouldn’t say Martz was coddling Cutler, and on a few occasions seemed to be agitated. This may have carried over to the start of throwing because some of Cutler’s early throws were a bit off. However, not to worry Chicago Bears fans, Cutler got A LOT better after a shaky start and made some ridiculous throws on sideline and post routes.
-Sticking with Cutler for a second, he really took on a bit of the leadership role yesterday. He was acting like another coach on the field. It was good to see him step-up a bit more in this role.
-Rookie quarterback Nathan Ederle had the second-strongest arm in camp. He needs to work on his consistency, but he made some rocket throws.
-Caleb Hanie was unimpressive. He threw behind his receivers regularly and this will lead to bad things.
-Roy Williams is a beast. He is big, strong and fast and really makes it look effortless.
-Devin Hester looks and performs great. His cuts and hands are getting better and better. The best part is he just works his rear-end off on the field.
-Johnny Knox was the talk of camp yesterday for the trade-me talks yesterday. The Cliff Note version was that Brad Biggs from the Chicago Tribune reported that Knox would potentially seek a trade if he wasn’t a starting receiver. Knox strongly denied this and said he wanted to be a Chicago Bear for life. On the field, he was quick but dropped a few passes and didn’t look sharp.
-Chicago Bears fans are going to LOVE Dane Sanzenbacher. He reminds me of Wes Welker. Don’t know how he does it, but he gets open and runs precise routes. The hype seems warranted.
-Earl Bennett is Earl Bennett. He’s not too fast but runs good routes and catches the ball.
-Andy Fantuz didn’t get in during the seven-on-seven drill. He ran some routes during the receiver drills and caught passes. He’s a huge guy but I am not sure what his role will be with this team if any…
-Defensively, Charles Tillman and rookie safety Chris Conte had excellent sessions. Tillman was the man in coverage and Conte made a nice pick during his time on the field.
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