Bears notebook: Brandon Marshall steering Alshon Jeffery away from flag football
BY ADAM L. JAHNS firstname.lastname@example.org
After catching a pass Bears receiver Alshon Jeffery and Green Bay safety M.D. Jennings look to see that Jeffery was called for an offensive pass interference in the fourth quarter of the Chicago Bears fell 21-13 loss to the Green Bay Packers Sunday December 16, 2012 . | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
Receiver Brandon Marshall’s work with rookie Alshon Jeffery continued this week. After Jeffery was called for offensive pass interference three times last week, it was a must.
“There are things that we can do to keep that from happening so much,” Marshall said. “We’ll work on those things.”
Marshall was limited in practice Thursday with a tight hamstring, but it’s not believed to be serious. Marshall figures to see plenty of Arizona Cardinals standout cornerback Patrick Peterson as well as double teams Sunday, putting the onus on the Bears’ other receivers again.
Marshall said he felt bad for Jeffery after what happened against the Green Bay Packers but also because Jeffery has had to deal with a broken hand and knee surgery in his first season.
“He’s working his butt off just to get healthy and also to get back to the form that he believes, and we all believe, he can play at,” Marshall said. “For that to happen to him, that kind of sucks, and it sucks for our team. But Alshon’s going to be OK. He’s a competitor, and he has a lot of ability. He has heart, and that’s a guy that you can take in your foxhole.”
Whether it’s learning not to fully extend his arms or to use his shoulders to box out defenders, offensive coordinator Mike Tice said he expects to see an improved Jeffery this week.
“Trying to make plays, you’ve got to understand the rules, and sometimes you get a little overzealous, and things happen,” Tice said. “But you don’t want to definitely give the zebras a chance to make that call. So he’ll get better . . . and he’ll make some plays for us, and there will be no flags.”
On the boo birds
Linebackers Brian Urlacher and Lance Briggs have received plenty of attention for their comments about getting booed by Bears fans. That continued Thursday when Briggs was asked to clarify earlier statements.
“Fans are fans,” Briggs said. “Fans pay their ticket to go see a football game. It’s well within their right to boo, cheer, cry, laugh, whatever feeling is coming to them. As players, we have a right to be happy, sad, upset, [ticked] off. And with the way social media works now, everyone gets to find out how you feel more often than probably years past. That’s just the way it works.”
Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman were No. 1 and 2 in fan voting for the Pro Bowl for NFC cornerbacks. Jennings had 312,596 votes.
Henry Melton was second among NFC defensive tackles with 250,554 votes. Marshall was third among NFC receivers with 483,675 votes.
Briggs, Urlacher, defensive end Julius Peppers, safety Major Wright, kick returner Devin Hester and special-teams standout Blake Costanzo finished in the top five at their respective positions.
† Right tackle Jonathan Scott was held out of practice a second consecutive day with a right-hamstring injury.
If he can’t play Sunday, Gabe Carimi should be back at right tackle.