Bears' not sure still on starting left DE

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by short faced bear, Sep 3, 2013.

  1. short faced bear

    short faced bear
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    By Brad Biggs
    Tribune reporter

    6:30 p.m. CDT, September 2, 2013

    Bears general manager Phil Emery says the Chicago Bears will make a decision on their starting left defensive end after reviewing how practices go this week.


    Shea McClellin, the first-round pick from last year, and Corey Wootton have been locked in a competition since the spring and two full practices remain before the coaching staff – coach Marc Trestman, defensive coordinator Mel Tucker and defensive line coach Mike Phair – will have to make a decision.


    Both sacked Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers in the second exhibition game. Both had strong showings in training camp. Wootton looked to be more explosive and powerful out of his stance. McClellin showed the athleticism needed to snatch a Jay Cutler screen pass out of the air and return it for a touchdown.


    Wootton is coming off more success last season. He started the final seven games and had seven sacks. McClellin made 2 ½ sacks but is in better shape for his second season. Wootton was on the field for 54.5 percent of the snaps and McClellin was at 34.7. Both are expected to play more this season.


    “I gotta be honest with you, I don’t know what the opening day starting situation is,” Emery said. “I think that is going to be earned through the week. I think they both have shown good upside in terms of what they are capable of doing. They’ve both made plays. I’ve certainly seen development in both Corey and Shea. Best man wins.


    “The other one is going to be on the field a lot. In terms of whoever goes out there and puts their hand on the ground first, that is a good thing, he earned that spot in front of the other one. They are competing as hard as I have seen two players go at it. Each and every rep counts to them, each and every one-on-one counts to them, each and every rep on game tape has counted to them. It’s a great thing. That is a heck of a thing to have on a team is that competition at that high level. I am excited about it. Whoever puts their hand down, they’ve earned it.”


    Emery discounted the suggestion that he would be disappointed if McClellin wasn’t he starter based on his draft status. Wootton was a fourth-round pick by former general manager Jerry Angelo in 2010 and is entering the final season of his contract.


    “Why would I be disappointed?” Emery said. “I don’t understand that rationale. So should I be mad at Corey? I don’t go there mentally. Best players are going to play. I know that both Shea and Corey are going to contribute to whatever we become as a team. Our goal is to win and win championships. They will contribute to that goal if we meet it, if we earn it.”


    It will be interesting to see what develops behind McClellin and Wootton. If something happens to one of the top three ends, the Bears have a pair of rookies they are working to develop. Cornelius Washington was a sixth-round pick who looked raw in preseason. The other option is David Bass, a seventh-round pick of the Raiders who was claimed off waivers on Sunday. Bass had 40 ½ sacks at Division II Missouri Western and 11 ½ as a senior.


    Emery said the Bears liked him over Cheta Ozougwu, who was waived, because Bass has superior size at 6-4, 256 pounds. Ozougwu was listed at 6-2, 255, and minor injuries plagued him in training camp and last season.


    “(Bass) is a better point of attack player in our eyes,” Emery said. “We feel like he has a better opportunity to be a more all-around player, run and pass and that again goes along with our roster philosophy. If you can find a player that is better at doing what you want done overall as a player and has a higher potential, a higher ceiling to do so, we’re going to go in that direction.”


    Between Washington and Bass, one of them will have to be game ready soon in case a need arises.


    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sport...-end-hasnt-been-made-20130902,0,5503774.story
     
  2. lklrlolnlilklsox

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    I liked what I saw from both of them this preseason, and I think a healthy rotation is the best thing for this team, anyway. There's enough talent for about 7 guys to get a lot of reps along the DL. Plus Wootton is sure to get some looks at UT on third down, so this is what I call a good problem.
     
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  3. zelezo vlk

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    Does Melton get pulled third down then? And why exactly is he pulled if he is a good pass rusher? I'm not doubting his ability, just wondering why a DE would play the Under Tackle Position if we have a capable pass rusher there.
     
  4. MPbears68

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    It's a rotation yeah but.....Wootton.
     
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  5. lklrlolnlilklsox

    lklrlolnlilklsox
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    When he needs a breather, which will most assuredly happen all along the DL with heavy three man rotations at DT and DE. Not to mention Melton coming back from a concussion and you want to ease him back into action as much as possible. You want your four best pass rushers out there on those third and longs, so no reason why Melton or Wootton couldn't slide over to NT. He did it last season, as a lot of really good DEs do around the league, I expect more from him this season.
     
  6. riczaj01

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    Shea cannot handle the DE run plays but you're thinking of starting him?!?!?!? Bad idea. Wootton earned that job outright w/Shea not developing.
     
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  7. zelezo vlk

    zelezo vlk
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    Obviously there's something that we collectively are missing if he's fighting for a starting gig. And thanks, Sox.
     
  8. Boochee Man

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    I don't see a competition here. I see one starter and one role player.
     
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  9. Tarkus

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    Wasn't sold on Shea when he was drafted so high. We didn't need a 'tweener with that pick. Too light...

    Wootton without a doubt IMO while Shea's a nice situational option. They probably have made the decision but want to keep the competition hot.
     
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  10. Sharky

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    Wooton please!
     

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