Postgame Rookie Roundup; A Few Impress in NFL Debut....

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  1. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Rookie Roundup: Bears newcomers impress in NFL debut

    August 9, 2014, 12:45 am

    Scott Krinch

    Friday night was the first chance for the Bears coaching staff to see what kind of progress the team's 2014 rookie class has made since the start of training camp.

    Kyle Fuller
    The Bears first-round selection finished with three tackles. The highlight of Fuller's night came in the first half when he used his physicality to force a pass break-up on Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews. After getting beat on the play, the Bears rookie corner adjusted while the ball was in the air and got his hand in just in time to force the incompletion.

    "You just have to be poised and play football," Fuller said. "I think it was a good first game but there are still a lot of things to learn from."

    Fuller is expected to see playing time opposite Charles Tillman on the outside with Tim Jennings moving inside on nickel coverage during the regular-season.

    Ego Ferguson
    The Bears' second-round defensive tackle was credited with two tackles against the Eagles. The former LSU Tiger looked over-matched at times, but that's expected from a rookie getting his first taste of the NFL.

    The Bears are looking for more consistency out of Ferguson as the preseason continues, something they have yet to see from veteran defensive tackle Stephen Paea.

    Will Sutton
    The two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year wasn't credited with any tackles in his NFL debut, but recorded a quarterback hit on Mark Sanchez. Like Ferguson, Sutton struggled at times in the opener. The former ASU defensive tackle had trouble disengaging from his blocks and couldn't get much push on the line.

    "I just went out there and did what I was supposed to do, and tried to play with technique and fundamentals," Sutton told CSNChicago.com.

    Ka'Deem Carey
    Carey earned the most carries of any running back on the Bears roster on Friday night. However, he was only able to register 23 yards on 10 carries with his longest run being seven yards.

    Carey can't be fully blamed for the poor stat line. He was running behind third-string members of the offensive line, and the Bears only compiled 92 rushing yards on the evening.

    However, one area the rookie shone was in his pass blocking. Carey constantly kept defenders at bay, which allowed passing lanes for both Jordan Palmer and Jimmy Clausen. This bodes well for Carey considering the Bears coaching staff has made it imperative that their running backs possess the ability to block.

    Brock Vereen
    The former University of Minnesota safety finished second on Chicago with five tackles. Vereen began training camp running with the first team at free safety, alongside strong safety Ryan Mundy, but last week Vereen was replaced by Danny McCray in the starting lineup.

    "Facing the offense that we face each day in practice, we definitely felt prepared [for the Eagles]," Vereen said. "I think every rookie at the end of the day just wants to prove that they deserve to be out there and I'm still in the process of that."

    Vereen appears to be the future for the Bears at free safety, but he will still have to beat out the returning Chris Conte and the aforementioned McCray for a starting job this season.

    David Fales
    The sixth-round pick out of San Jose State hasn't seen many reps in training camp, but has a real chance to make the team as the third quarterback.

    Fales entered Friday's game at the beginning of the fourth quarter. He connected with Josh Bellamy for a 41-yard pass on his first NFL throw. Despite a good start to the drive, Fales was picked off by Eagles corner Jaylen Watkins.

    Fales would bounce back to lead the Bears on a 16-play, 73-yard clock-chewing drive that resulted in a Robbie Gould 25-yard field goal. Fales finished the evening 5-of-7 for 68 yards, one interception and a 62.6 passer rating.

    Pat O'Donnell
    MEGA-PUNT. The Bears' sixth-round pick was nicknamed "Mega-punt" during training camp for his booming, 70-yard punts.

    That wasn't the case for O'Donnell in his Soldier Field debut. His two punts went for an average of 43.5 yards, with a long of 47.

    Charles Leno Jr.
    It's hard to get a feel for a rookie offensive lineman's performance during a preseason fourth quarter, but the Boise State product held his own and was on the field late in the contest when the Bears picked up a majority of their rushing yards.

    Other notable rookies
    Heisman Trophy finalist and Chicago native Jordan Lynch finished with a team-high 24 rushing yards on seven carries. Lynch had his hometown crowd roaring after he lowered the boom and sent Eagles safety Keelan Johnson to the ground on a punishing 12-yard run.

    Former CFL standout Chris Williams, who is competing for a roster spot at wide receiver on the Bears, wowed the Soldier Field crowd with a 73-yard touchdown reception. However, Williams would leave the game after injuring himself on the play.

    Former Oklahoma Sooners cornerback Demontre Hurst had a team-high eight tackles, including a tackle for a loss and a pass defended.
  2. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Good summary by the author here.

    What I see out of Fuller is that he is all he was advertised to be and maybe a little more. He's smart, he's physical, and he's as prepared to start as a rookie as anyone could ask him to be. He shows a lot of cool and poise and he makes some plays. I like him a lot. Smart pick Phil.

    B- is trying to keep me grounded about Ego and "Dreads" but I still expected more out of them than I got. Yeah they improved as the game wore on but against the Eagles subs and third tier guys they should have dominated and at least held their own against their starters and they didn't. Both have a way to go before you can use them for more than spot duty or at mop up time and then not both at the same time. They can't hold the point of attack yet.

    I'm gonna lump Carey and Lynch together here and say they are both what you see is what you get RBs. Neither of them goes over 210lbs but they take a handoff and find whatever tiny hole the line gives them and they gain positive yardage. Yeah they only averaged 2-3 ypc but playing behind that line even that was a minor miracle. The real benefit we get from both is that they didn't lose yardage looking for a an opening that isn't gonna happen the way Forte will at times. They're both gritty north/south runners who can also catch and run and I thought Carey did a great job picking up rushers. I'd day he's earned the #2 spot and Lynch should have elevated his status a bit too.

    Vereen did what was expected of him when he was the last man standing between the receiver and the end zone. He squared up, wrapped up, and made the key tackle. So far that's good enough for me. Demontre Hurst is showing why he should make the team as backup at Nickel/Slot CB. He looked good there in preseason last year and he looks good enough again this year to bump Frey off the team. I just hope we can find a spot for him.

    Fales wasn't up against the best but he was up against at least as good as he was in college and he did his thing pretty well. There's no doubt in my mind any longer that we have coaches who can develop young QBs. Happy Days, the era of 30 lousy QBs in 30 straight years is finally over and we can start drafting them again. It should be interesting to see how this QB situation ends up.

    O'Donnell has a big leg but like a golfer whose long off the tee he mishits some so his consistency needs to improve. Tress Way is sticking with him but it's still O'Donnell's job to lose. Chris Williams? I'm sold. Pack your bags Eric Weems and start checking Priceline.com for tickets out of Chicago. As soon as that "hammy" has healed CWill needs to get on the field more and also start returning punts. Weems is a joke. He has no speed as a returner and no ability to get vertical for a pass. CWill out ran a CB for a TD with a tweaked hammy and he can dunk a basketball. This should be a no contest deal.

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