Bears altercation nothing personal, just competition
BY ADAM L. JAHNS Staff Reporter June 3, 2014 6:04PM
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Updated: July 5, 2014 6:34AM
There was plenty of shoving. There was loud, come-get-me trash-talking. And there was a helmet taken off and violently slammed against the ground.
“It’s football,” defensive end Lamarr Houston said after organized team activities at Halas Hall on Tuesday.
It also was the first witnessed skirmish of the Bears’ offseason. It included Houston, right tackle Jordan Mills, defensive end Jared Allen and tight end Martellus Bennett. It was Bennett who slammed his helmet during the flare-up between the first-team offenses and defenses.
“We’re just competitive guys,” Houston said. “We like to compete, and we compete to win. We’re just so competitive and passionate about the game, so sometimes things get a little heated out there.
“That’s football. We just go back to the next play and keep working. It’s nothing personal. Marty is a good guy. He’s a good friend of mine. I’m going to go joke in [Halas Hall] with him after this. Everything is all good.”
Bennett declined to speak to reporters after the open practice but made an expletive-filled statement on Twitter.
“I go hard every [expletive] day,” Bennett said on Twitter. “No doubt about that.”
Fights happen all the time during practices. Last year during training camp, Bennett grappled with cornerback Kelvin Hayden, but nothing more came of it.
If anything, it’s a good sign that the Bears’ revamped defense is pushing an offense that scored the second-most points in the league last season.
“Arguments are going to happen,” Mills said. “It’s just a fact of: Stop it, move on and get what we need to get done.”
So what does coach Marc Trestman say to his team after fights break out?
“Basically he’s saying, we’re wasting time just arguing with each other when we can be getting better, getting these plays in against each other,” Mills said. “It’s a trickle-down [effect]. When you miss plays, you miss opportunities. And you need those opportunities.”