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PapaBear.OR
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OTAs - Time To Go To Work
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And so it begins.

 

Major questions during Matt Nagy’s first Bears organized team activities

A young quarterback taking his team by the reins and injury questions loom large for the Bears this month at Halas Hall.

By Robert Zeglinski

 

One more month and the summer “break” begins for NFL teams. Players and coaches can soon go on vacation to tropical locales, and get refreshed for the grind of the season that begins in late July. Unfortunately for the Bears, that period is cut short this year due to commitments in the Hall of Fame game: meaning the team reports to training camp in Bourbonnais a week earlier than usual. From a glass half full perspective, Chicago has more time to freshen up on Matt Nagy’s offense and build chemistry. It just depends on how much everyone values that extra week of relaxation.

Until the Bears can get to their much-needed break, they have 12 practices to churn through in May and early next month. The first practices where veterans and newcomers alike have the opportunity to get in sync for the 2018 season. While organized team activities and mandatory minicamp over the next four weeks are less meaningful than July’s full pad, fully united gauntlet: they’re still foundational periods for a young team.

Unpacking the major storylines from Nagy’s first Bears’ organized team activities with a musical theme.

“I Wanna Be Well” - Injury statuses

The vital idea to remember about team practices in late spring isn’t necessarily who is practicing, but to what extent important players are actually participating. With camp 2.5 months away, and different timelines and severity of injuries, May can offer a clearer picture of how injury recovery is going for several guys on the Bears’ roster.

Who are those recovering players on the Bears roster, you ask?

Look no further than Kyle Long, who was last seen going through three surgeries on his neck, labrum, and elbow this off-season. The 29-year-old guard hasn’t played a full season since 2015 due to complications from a traumatic ankle injury. At this stage of his career, it’s getting to the point where the Bears likely begin thinking about putting a replacement plan in place. Any kind of accelerated Long presence this spring gives him a boost against that sentiment, as it proves he’s starting to get past his injury woes.

Then there’s Allen Robinson. The last time Robinson played in a football game, he tore his ACL in the opening minutes of the 2017 season. The 24-year-old signed a three-year $42 million dollar deal in March to be the Bears’ top skill position playmaker. He signed that deal with the caveat that he, of course, wasn’t in perfect standing with his knee yet. Robinson wasn’t all systems go when the team met in mid-April, but he did vow to be 100 percent ready by training camp. Practice this month should show how far the receiver has come.

To the defensive side of the ball, and less of a concern, is the right knee of Leonard Floyd. Floyd tore two ligaments back in November 2017 and missed the Bears’ last six games of the season.

“Where Is The Love (Rush)?” - Pass rush issues come to forefront

Fun fact: the Bears’ current outside linebacking group, rookies and undrafted free agents included, had a total of 40 games played last season. That’s not 40 starts, but games where they participated for at least one play. Not ideal roster construction.

Yes, right now, Chicago is dangerously thin at edge rusher. They’re relying heavily on the mentioned health issues of Floyd, Aaron Lynch (who hasn’t had a major role since 2015), and journeyman good soldier but minimal difference maker, Sam Acho. After this questionable trio, you’re discussing a 2018 sixth round pick who also hasn’t played a full season since 2015 due to injuries in Kylie Fitts, and a bunch of unheralded players unlikely to make any impact.

 

“The Man” - Trubisky’s time to shine

Last year at this time, the Bears were adamant that Mike Glennon was their starter .........

After Glennon turned over the ball 10 times in four starts to begin 2017 - including an embarrassing four times on national television against the Packers to end September - the Bears’ had no choice but to scrap their original vision. They handed the keys to Trubisky and never looked back.

All of this denotes that it’s Trubisky’s first off-season as unquestionably “the man” in Chicago. It’s his team and ultimate success that defines everything the Bears have attempted to build. Without hyperbole, if Trubisky falls short, then so does the regime of general manager Ryan Pace. If he excels, this organization has a period of sustained success it hasn’t seen in decades.

Now it’s time to see it in action beyond the biased words of two men tied at the hip to the 23-year-old. Let’s see Trubisky command his offense. Let’s see him be on top of Nagy’s nuanced offensive scheme faster than everyone else. Let’s see the initial stages of him becoming the first true face of the Bears’ franchise since Brian Urlacher. This exercise starts in May, when the entire 2018 roster is gathered for the first time. Through this minutiae, it’s time for Trubisky to show he’s the star the Bears believe he is.

https://www.windycitygridiron.com/2018/5/15/17355596/chicago-bears-major-questions-matt-nagy-organized-team-activities-mitch-trubisky-injuries-nfl-2018

PapaBear.OR
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Re: OTAs - Time To Go To Work
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First out of the block, our own Larry Mayer:

Bears veterans, rookies practice together

The Bears conducted the first of 10 scheduled OTA workouts Tuesday at Halas Hall, mixing their veterans and rookies on the practice field for the first time this year.

"It was fun to get everybody together," said outside linebacker Sam Acho, an eighth-year pro. "Yesterday we had a meeting with all the veterans and all the rookies and today we were on the field together. It's a process. We're all getting to know each other better. But it's fun to see more and more of what the team is going to look like."

Bears veterans have been working out at Halas Hall since April 3 when the offseason program began. The rookies arrived last Thursday night and participated in rookie minicamp Friday through Sunday before joining their veteran teammates this week.

"It's that time of the year and it's funny how fast it comes up on you," said veteran defensive end Akiem Hicks. "But once you get back out there with the guys again, it just feels like home."

It may feel like home to Hicks and other experienced players, but it no doubt will take the rookies some time to adjust to life in the NFL.

"It's so funny to see just how zoned in and focused they are because this is their first experience," Hicks said. "They're so locked in that I'll tell them a joke and they're like, ‘Uh, can I laugh?' But it comes with time and [they'll] get more comfortable [once they] get a grasp on the system. That's really what the big focus is for them, especially on our defense, is picking up all the stuff that everybody else already knows."

Rookie outside linebacker Kylie Fitts, a sixth-round draft pick from Utah, enjoyed practicing alongside some players he grew up watching.

"It was a lot faster than the rookie minicamp for sure," Fitts said. "Calls were coming in a lot faster. So you've got to really focus in and know your assignment and know your technique. But it felt good. After a few plays, I started getting used to it."

Acho is impressed with the strides the Bears rookies have already made.

"They seem really advanced," Acho said. "At least in our room, the OLB room, a lot of guys seem way ahead of what you would expect from a guy who's a week in or a couple of days in, so it's exciting."

 

http://www.chicagobears.com/news/article-1/Bears-veterans-rookies-practice-together/5b9b2f6c-daab-4f2e-98cb-96d437f5b627

Butkus never wore an earring

Corn Cob
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BREAKING......

Rookies and veterans practiced together!

Details in two weeks!

Corn Cob
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Ah hah.....here we go....

[Chris Emma]
Chris Emma
@CEmma670
·
1m
Matt Nagy likes how the Bears defense is playing fast in OTAs. He sees the offense showing growth thus far.
 

Corn Cob
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Coach Nagy on Allen  Robinson's rehab.

PapaBear.OR
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Biggest takeaways from Matt Nagy's Wednesday press conference

ByMatt Eurich

The Chicago Bears headed into the great outdoors on Wednesday afternoon to take part in an organized team activity (OTAs) for the first time this year in front of the media with their entire 90-man roster. The practice, which does not allow tackling and only features helmets and shorts, is one of many opportunities the Bears have this offseason to install a new gameplan on the offensive side of the ball.

 

The Bears held a practice open to the media on Wednesday and Nagy fielded a barrage of questions. Below we pinpoint the key takeaways from Wednesday's practice and what Nagy had to say about what went down.

They are taking it slow with Allen Robinson

Robinson is coming off an ACL injury he suffered last year against the Houston Texans as a member of the Jacksonville Jaguars in the first game of the year. Nagy noted he is not too worried about where the young wideout currently is because of the progress he has shown since joining the team in March.

"He's ahead of the game," Nagy said about Robinson in his post-practice press conference. "He's looking good. We're feeling very good about his prognosis as far as getting started. We don't need to rush it. He's been doing great in meetings—he's answering every question in the meetings. He's out here focused doing everything we want him to do."

It was a good day for the defense

In Chicago the defense has the early advantage over what the offense is doing right now. Nagy was clear to point that out early in his presser on Wednesday afternoon.

"It was a good day for the defense," Nagy said in his press conference. "I thought they came out and played fast."

Nagy admitted it is going to take a little bit for the offense to catch up to the defense since everything is brand new on that side of the ball, while the defense is returning the majority of their starters and are in the same system under Fangio. If this continues over the course of the next several weeks there should be some concern about the offense, but as of right now this should be expected.

Roquan Smith caught Nagy's eye

Kyle Long is essentially locked in at right guard

"No one on this team is locked into any position," Nagy said. "But, I would say he's about as close as it gets... We want these guys to be comfortable in their positions."

Adam Shaheen was bigger than Nagy thought

Eddie Jackson has caught his eye

He's impressed with Tarik Cohen

No one got Nagy more excited on Wednesday afternoon than running back Tarik Cohen.

"He's actually the one kid on this team that I knew had a lot of talent," Nagy said with a big smile. "But he comes out here and runs every route the right way. He catches most balls. He doesn't make a lot of mistakes and you see how he is in the meeting rooms when he's listening to the plays. Out here how serious he is, but yet he knows how to have fun. He's a player, that for me, you get giddy about, but you also know you've got other players too."

https://247sports.com/nfl/chicago-bears/ContentGallery/Biggest-takeaways-from-Matt-Nagys-Wednesday-press-conference-118281133

Butkus never wore an earring

Corn Cob
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Chris [email protected]
2m2 minutes ago
Danny Trevathan likes the new-look Bears offense: "They got the right pieces. I like what I see out there. When somebody makes a play, they're gone. Everybody can run over there."

Chris [email protected]
5m5 minutes ago
Danny Trevathan sees a sharp focus in Roquan Smith in addition to the speed and instincts he brings to the defense: "I feel like we got a good linebacker."

Chris [email protected]
19m19 minutes ago
Matt Nagy said Adam Shaheen has a bigger catch radius than he anticipated. "He's a guy that fits our offense really well. Now, it's just a matter of how fast is he going to learn it and figure out the details, the ins and outs of the different routes that we run."

Chris [email protected]
21m21 minutes ago
Matt Nagy sees strong progress in Allen Robinson as he works towards action: "He's ahead of the game. He's looking good. We're feeling good about his prognosis as far as getting started. We don't need to rush it."

Chris [email protected]
26m26 minutes ago
Matt Nagy said Kyle Long is doing "really well" in working his way back, which involves learning the new offense. "As soon as we all agree that he's ready to go, he'll be up and going."

Mark [email protected]
16m16 minutes ago
Bears ILB Danny Trevathan says he is willing to be a mentor to rookie LB Roquan Smith. Trevathan says that Smith is "quick, instinctive, and learns well."

Mark [email protected]
21m21 minutes ago
Bears head coach Matt Nagy says that WR Allen Robinson is "ahead of the game." Robinson is still laying low in practice while he gets closer to full force from his left knee injury.

Mark [email protected]
37m37 minutes ago
Bears CB Prince Amukamara on the evolution of his relationship with DC Vic Fangio: “At first I thought he was a guy that just mother F’d y

Kevin [email protected]
4s4 seconds ago
One of the reasons Prince Amukamara wanted to re-sign with the Bears? Mitch Trubisky...


 

Corn Cob
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PapaBear.OR
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John Jenkins (#92) and Akiem Hicks stretch out before the Bears' mini-camp practice on May 16.

......... Hicks is truly a beast.

Butkus never wore an earring

Calbrooks
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The Chicago Bears didn’t have a lot of playmakers on offense in 2017, but new head coach Matt Nagy had his eye on one as he took over the team this offseason.

He couldn’t get to work with Tarik Cohen until OTAs started Wednesday, but he’s already excited about having the versatile weapon in his offense.

“He’s actually the one kid on this team that I knew had a lot of talent, but he comes out here and runs every route the right way, catches most balls and he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes,” Nagy told reporters at OTAs. “He’s a player you get giddy about.”

******

https://bearswire.usatoday.com/2018/05/16/matt-nagy-tarik-cohen-chicago-bears-offense-otas/

Train like you are 2nd, but play like you are 1st.

_Afrocomb
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Favorite thing from all this info is that it seems that Nagy tmay think he has a legit weapon in Shaheen. After how limited Fox used him last year it will be great to see someone allow him to shine!

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