The Chicago Bears concluded their preseason against the Cleveland Browns on Thursday night.
Second overall pick Mitchell Trubisky got the “start” and played a total of four series but only threw four total passes and those all came in the final drive of the night for him.
It was an ugly night on the scoreboard and for the second straight week, the Bears appeared to have sustained multiple injuries. There was much more bad than good tonight for the first time all preseason but the good news is, most of the players participating in tonight’s game will not make the final roster on Saturday.
For a closer look at what went right and what went wrong, let’s take a look up who’s up and who’s down in the team’s final preseason game.
OLB Isaiah Irving
No one did more for themselves last night than the undrafted pass rusher out of San Jose State.
Irving has had a quietly strong preseason but it all came to light tonight as he had a pair of sacks, including a forced fumble and a couple of quarterback pressures.
Pending the health of Lamarr Houston, Irving could be a dark-horse candidate to make the final roster and at very worst, should be one of the first players added to the practice squad on Sunday, assuming he passes through waivers.
DL Roy Robertson-Harris
Robertson-Harris earned a start last night and looked like the best defensive lineman on the field. There’s little doubt that he’s etched his roster spot in stone but after being named a special teams captain and another solid outing, he may push for serious playing time early in the season.
ILB John Timu
One of the few roster questions left heading into the cut-down period remains how many linebackers the Bears will keep, especially with the questionable health of both Danny Trevathan and Pernell McPhee.
Timu finished the game with 6 tackles, two for losses and a sack. It was a standout performance for Timu and one that could force the Bears into a tough decision at inside linebacker and could ultimately force them to keep five at the position.
Only time will tell but it’s evident that Timu continues to improve and a performance like this can only help his chances of making the roster.
LB Christian Jones
There’s very few players on Chicago’s roster as versatile as Jones and he continued to show that on Thursday. After playing well inside, Jones slid outside as a pass rusher in place of the injured Lamarr Houston.
Even when Jones hasn’t showed up in the box score, he is creating opportunities for other players or playing on multiple special teams units.
At the time this past off-season, his re-signing didn’t receive much attention but with Trevathan’s status in the air and the versatility and growth Jones continues to show, this could end up being one of GM Ryan Pace’s more underrated moves as the season moves on.
For the second straight week, injuries were an issue for the Bears.
Lamarr Houston, Victor Cruz, Deiondre Hall and Connor Shaw headlined the list of injured players that left the game and did not return.
Last year, the Bears started the season with five players on Injured Reserve. The team entered the game with four players already there (including Cam Meredith) and it appears they might add a few more after the official announcements are made.
A big key to the Bears’ success this year will be dependent on health and they’re not off to a good start.
As a whole, the entire group of defensive backs had a very rough night. That list ranges from B.W. Webb and Harold Jones-Quartey to Deon Bush, Rashaad Reynolds and Johnthan Banks.
None of them had good showings and even Hall left early in the game with an apparent hamstring injury. Don’t be surprised to see the Bears target at least one free-agent defensive back in the coming days.
Many fans arrived at Soldier Field and many more watched on television in hopes of seeing Trubisky light it up one more time but after seeing the first three series of pure handoffs (nine straight to be exact), boos began to rain down and didn’t let up for most of the night.
The Bears offense did not score and the final score of 25-0 didn’t exactly impress fans.
Heading into the night, there appeared to be two-or-three roster spots up for grabs at receiver but after a porous night from the offense and only a total of 120 passing yards, the receiving battle didn’t really ever get a chance to get off the ground. Bears receivers only had four receptions all night.
Of Connor Shaw’s 110 yards, 52 came on one play within the last drive of the game. All in all, it was not at all what the Bears’ coaching staff had hoped for and in the coming days, it’s almost a guaranteed that Pace and the front office will be scouring every available avenue for receiving help. Make no mistake, last night’s results didn’t help the evaluation process at all.