suntimes
UPBEAT 
Weather Updates

Jordan Palmer first in line as Bears’ backup QB

Updated: June 23, 2014 1:02PM



When it comes to backing up quarterback Jay Cutler, the onus is on rookie David Fales and Jerrod Johnson to outperform Jordan Palmer.

“I’ve told Jordan that he’s going to have the first shot, [but] the backup position hasn’t been won yet,” coach Marc Trestman said Saturday. “I talked to Jordan about it [Friday], and there’s a competition. [But] Jordan’s been here and deserves the first opportunity and the reps to get there.”

Trestman said he’s considering taking four quarterbacks into training camp with Palmer, Johnson and Fales vying for two roster spots.

Fales, a sixth-round pick, and Johnson, who spent part of last season on the practice squad, are getting a handle on the verbiage, pace and progressions of Trestman’s offense during the Bears’ rookie minicamp this weekend.

“[It’s] seeing how they take direction from [quarterbacks coach] Matt [Cavanaugh], myself and [offensive coordinator] Aaron [Kromer],” Trestman said. “How they call the plays. Can they handle the verbiage quickly? They’ve had to learn a lot every night because they’re learning something new every night. And then they’ve got to spit it out, and it’s a completely different language.”

Lynch must be special

Special-teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis was clear: In order for quarterback-turned-running back Jordan Lynch to make the Bears, he has to contribute on special teams. The Bears carried four running backs last season, but Michael Ford played only on special teams.

“Whoever that guy is, we’ve got to make sure that they bring that value to the game because you’re not going to play all four running backs,” DeCamillis said. “It’s just not going to happen. They’ve got to be a viable special-teams player. I think [Lynch] knows that, too.”

Waiting on Pat

DeCamillis has kept in contact with long snapper Patrick Mannelly but doesn’t have a sense if the longtime special-teams captain is leaning toward his 17th season or retiring after offseason hip surgery.

Three long snappers — Chad Rempel , Brandon Hartson and Craig Montgomery (tryout) — are taking part in rookie minicamp.

“[Mannelly] was hurt all last training camp . . . so I don’t know that we have to figure it out soon,” DeCamillis said. “There’s no pressure. We just have to let it play out.”

Email: ajahns@suntimes.com

Twitter: @adamjahns



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.