Chicago Sun-Times Latest news from the Chicago Sun-Times Online en-us (Editor) Newspapers Chicago Sun-Times 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Small talent pool may spur Bears to select safety first or second ]]> Lead story image

Leading up to the NFL draft, which begins May 8, the Sun-Times will take a position-by-position look at the Bears’ needs and which players might be available to fill them. Louisville’s Calvin Pryor is a thumper, and Alabama’s Ha Ha Clinton-Dix is a more prototypical ballhawk. While draftniks debate who the best safety is — most rank them 1 and 1A, in either order — the Bears likely would be thrilled to see either at No. 14. The team has researched both college stars. “They said they were very interested in me,” said the hard-hitting Pryor, who visited the Bears … ]]> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 20:42:45 -0500 <![CDATA[ After likely taking safety first, Bears could target Arizona State DT Sutton ]]> Lead story image

It appears likely that the Bears’ draft plans for rebuilding their defense will mimic construction-site signs: Safety first. If so, who’s second? As the Bears look to bolster their defensive-tackle positions, Arizona State’s Will Sutton, a two-time Pac-12 defensive player of the year, could be an attractive second-round choice. The feeling, it seems, is mutual. “Of course, any team that runs the 4-3 defense is a perfect fit for me,” Sutton, who visited the Bears last week, said Tuesday. “The Bears had some struggles last year at D-line, and they’re probably going to draft heavy in the D-line department.” The … ]]> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 21:25:45 -0500 <![CDATA[ Bears wouldn’t mind drafting a QB that Marc Trestman can groom ]]> Lead story image

Leading up to the NFL draft, which begins May 8, the Sun-Times will take a position-by-position look at the Bears’ needs and which players might be available to fill them. Jay Cutler has his lucrative long-term deal, and Jordan Palmer has the confidence of coach Marc Trestman. But the Bears always have been open to adding a young quarterback. It has been up for consideration for some time and likely will be during the draft in May. “The next step in this — we got Jordan in place — is to bring in one other quarterback, whoever that player is, … ]]> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 02:23:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ Bears likely looking long-term at linebacker ]]> Lead story image

Leading up to the NFL draft, which begins May 8, the Sun-Times will take a position-by-position look at the Bears’ needs and which players might be available to fill them. ]]> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 15:26:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Even after free agency, Bears should seek draft help on defense ]]> Lead story image

Bears general manager Phil Emery spent a lot of time and millions of dollars during free agency to address a defense that was historically awful last season. Now the Bears need to add some young blood to the mix. With the draft moved back to May 8-10 this year, there’s some extra time for Emery and Co. to move players around on their draft board. But the Bears’ needs — even after their impressive haul in free agency — remain clear. Defense comes first. 1. Safety Major Wright and Chris Conte didn’t benefit from the all injuries in front of … ]]> Sun, 20 Apr 2014 02:37:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ NIU’s Jordan Lynch excited about Bears’ workout ]]> Lead story image

It’s either fitting or a statement about the Bears’ passing game the last decade: As a boy, Jordan Lynch cheered for bruising running back Anthony Thomas. “He was fun to watch,” he said. While some in the NFL view Lynch as more “A-Train” than quarterback, the former Mount Carmel High School and Northern Illinois star has his chance Friday to prove he’s more of the latter. The third-place finisher in last season’s Heisman Trophy race will work out for the Bears — at quarterback — as part of their local pro day. “It’s the team you grew up watching,” he … ]]> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 12:53:59 -0500 <![CDATA[ Hometown Bears to give guards Chris Watt, Zach Fulton a look ]]>

The path to the NFL has taken Notre Dame’s Chris Watt and Tennessee’s Zach Fulton out of their comfort zones at guard, a position they’ve handled well at big-time programs. But Watt and Fulton are all for broadening their horizons by working at center for NFL teams. ‘‘Every team has had me snap at least a few times every time they came in,’’ Watt said. ‘‘I’ve been working on my snaps,’’ Fulton said. And their hometown Bears might ask Watt (Glenbard West) and Fulton (Homewood-Flossmoor) to do the same when they take part in the team’s local pro day Friday … ]]> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 12:54:42 -0500 <![CDATA[ Overlooked Notre Dame QB Tommy Rees gets chance to impress Bears ]]> Lead story image

The Bears’ Halas Hall isn’t a foreign or intimidating place to Tommy Rees. The Notre Dame quarterback has roamed its grounds before. Rees, who played at nearby Lake Forest High, was there “a bunch” when his father, Bill, worked for the team in the late in 1990’s. And Rees said he stopped in during high school. Yet, Friday’s visit will be different. Very different. “It’s a little weird being from right there,” Rees said. “But I just look at it as a great opportunity.” It’s an opportunity during the Bears’ local pro day to prove he has some NFL value, … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 00:17:49 -0500 <![CDATA[ Safety Calvin Pryor says he’s the right type for Bears ]]> Lead story image

Calvin Pryor and the Bears have the same reputation. ‘‘I bring a certain type of physicalness to the defense,’’ the Louisville safety told the Sun-Times on Tuesday. ‘‘The Bears are already known to be physical. ‘‘That playmaker ability, that’s what I can bring to the team. . . . If I get added to the team.’’ Projected to go in the top half of the first round in next month’s NFL draft, Pryor met with the Bears about two weeks ago. He came away impressed with coach Marc Trestman, general manager Phil Emery and defensive coordinator Mel Tucker. ‘‘It was a positive … ]]> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 02:24:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ Bears will face Seahawks in third preseason game ]]> Lead story image

The Bears’ third preseason game will be on the road against the reigning Super Bowl champions. In the game featuring the most playing time for starters and relevant backups, the new-look Bears will face the Seahawks between Aug. 21 and 24. The NFL announced its preseason schedule Wednesday. In the Bears’ case, it gave a range of dates for three games and a solid date and time for the other. The team will open at home against the Eagles — who beat the Bears 54-11 in December — between Aug. 7 and 10. The Bears will host the Jaguars on Aug. … ]]> Wed, 09 Apr 2014 22:53:06 -0500 <![CDATA[ Four downs with Mike Ditka: On the Bears’ defense and NFL ownership ]]> Lead story image

1. The Bears have made some big offseason moves, especially on the defensive side of the ball. What kind of message does that send to the coaches and players? They understood what their problem was: defense. Marc [Trestman] has done a great job with the offense. They knew they had to get better people on defense, get a better pass rush and get better people to cover in the secondary. And they did that. Now, they still have to deal with Green Bay, Detroit and Minnesota in that division. But it’s pretty clear that they got better. I think it … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 02:36:25 -0500