While the firing of John Fox was the headline-grabbing transaction for the Chicago Bears on Monday, the team signed seven players from its practice squad to reserve/futures contracts.
The following players will be on the team’s 90-man roster going into 2018 and are eligible to participate in the team’s offseason training programs:
- Colin Thompson, tight end
- Will Pericak, offensive line
- Mekale McKay, wide receiver
- Doran Grant, defensive back
- Tanner Gentry, wide receiver
- DeMarcus Ayers, wide receiver
- Travis Averill, offensive line
Considering the deterioration of the offensive line as the year went on and the lack of production from the wide receiver position that hindered the offense all season, it should come as no surprise to see a pair of offensive linemen (Pericak, Averill) and three wide receivers (McKay, Gentry, Ayers) get added via reserve/future contracts.
If the Bears decide on hiring an offensive-minded head coach, I’ll be very curious to see how they go about using the practice squad and if Gentry or Ayers are used in training camp and into the preseason. We’ll cross those bridges when we get there, but those are two names that stand out in relation to the team’s needs moving forward.
As we learned in 2017, the practice squad can go through a ton of turnover in a given season. All of the players who were originally on the Bears’ season-opening practice squad were called up this season. Seven of those players appeared on at least one offensive of defensive snap for the Bears this season, while one player (offensive lineman Dieugot Joseph) was poached by the Baltimore Ravens in September.