The Chicago Bears 2012 training camp is in full swing, this Thursday Bears fans will be able to quench their thirst at the table of football, as they take on the Denver Broncos in the pre-season opener. In honour of finally being able to watch the Chicago Bears take on another team, I have put together a list of players to watch, who are fighting for jobs, and have impressed thus far in camp.
So without further ado I present my list of three to watch this Thursday:
1) Corey Wootton DE: I have always seen a certain amount of talent in this guy, it is mainly the constant stream of injuries that has held him back (a running theme of the Angelo era), but he had an incredibly disappointing 2011 season, were he seemed to regress more than anything. Wootton is in a huge year this season, his contract is up at the end of the 2013 season, and other than ending the Brett Favre nonsense for good, with his savage sack of the then Minnesota Vikings QB, he has failed to stay healthy, and really give the Bears a solid reason to keep him around. By all accounts Wootton has brought it this camp so far, pushing himself back up the depth chart, it will be interesting to see whether he can sustain his health, and level of play into and beyond the game with the Broncos. In truth beating the cut is only half the battle for Wootton, he has to prove every day this season he deserves a spot on this roster.
2) Dane Sanzenbacher WR: This guys safety level seems to fluctuate day to day. Sunday Devin Thomas WR retires, all of a sudden Sanzenbacher becomes a lock for a roster spot. Monday rolls around the Bears pick up former WR Rashied Davis who is a far superior special teams contributor to a 1 year contract. Sanzenbacher has the edge at WR unfortunately for him the depth chart for the Bears at that position is significantly better, he is at best the 5th best WR on the roster, he needs to prove he can contribute significantly on ST a faze of the ball even the most casual of Bears fans knows they put a greater emphasis on, than your average NFL outfit.
3) Armando Allen RB: the Bears picked this guy up as an UDFA rookie in the lockout shortened 2011 NFL offseason, he spent a year on the practise squad until Matt Forte RB went down with a knee injury sustained in a late season regular season game against the Kansas City Chiefs, when he was given a spot on the 53 man roster. A telling sign that he has a legitimate shot of making the roster is the praise of Mike Tice OC in interviews, and the notes from numerous other journalists and bloggers, who have all mentioned a play or two that has impressed. He also doesn’t seem to suffer from the same fumbling issues that plague Kahlil Bell RB. For what it is worth I think both Bell and Allen make the 53 man roster, I really don’t think the Bears will carry a FB this season as stated in a previous article (click here).
Make sure to check in on Friday were I will do a break down of how these three chaps performed in the pre-season opener.