It was a rough Sunday in Tennessee for the Chicago Bears as they lost two players to season ending knee injuries. Wide out Cameron Meredith may be replaced by the players the Bears have under contract, but in order to replace long snapper Patrick Scales, the Bears held a try out at Halas Hall today.
According to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune, the winner of the long snapping try was was Jeff Overbaugh, who graduated from San Diego State in 2015. He’s had brief stops on the roster’s of the Denver Broncos and the St. Louis Rams.
The 6’2”, 238 pounder “has the snap speed and outstanding accuracy to get a shot in the league,” according to NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein, and his “willingness to tackle” will also help him out.
When Scales left Sunday’s game with his knee injury, the Bears used Bradley Sowell to long snap, and he performed admirably. The Bears, like many teams in the NFL, may prefer to have a long snapper that only performs that duty.
With only 32 long snapping jobs in the NFL, it’s a tough job to hold on to, and it’s one that requires perfection. According to Stephan Wiebe of the Alaska Dispatch News, Overbaugh “didn’t botch a snap on all 134 extra points, 55 field goals and 164 punts,” during his senior year with the Aztecs.
EDIT: The move is now official, with Scales being waived/injured.