Good Morning … Now, Check Out the First Official 2019 Bears Depth Chart!

Social Navigation


Good Morning … Now, Check Out the First Official 2019 Bears Depth Chart!

Chicago Bears

The second year of the Matt Nagy Era kicks off on Thursday when the Chicago Bears host the Carolina Panthers in the first of their four preseason exhibition matchups. With the game on the horizon, let’s take some time and sort through the first depth chart of the summer.

Let’s take a look:

Quarterback

  1. Mitch Trubisky
  2. Chase Daniel
  3. Tyler Bray

No Matt Nagy? I’m shocked. What else does a guy have to do to crack the top three?

Running back

  1. Tarik Cohen
  2. Mike Davis
  3. David Montgomery (rookie)

Others: Ryan Nall, Kerrith Whyte Jr. (rookie)

The depth chart looks different than it did at this time last year. Cohen, the only running back returning from the top of the 2018, makes the move up the ranks to RB1. But because Cohen spent time in the slot, split out wide, and elsewhere along the offensive formation, I feel as if calling him a running back does him no justice.

Wide Receiver #1

  1. Allen Robinson II
  2. Anthony Miller
  3. Javon Wims

Others: Marvin Hall, Jordan Williams-Lambert, Emanuel Hall (rookie)

Wide Receiver #2

  1. Taylor Gabriel
  2. Cordarrelle Patterson
  3. Riley Ridley (rookie)

Others: Tanner Gentry, Taquan Mizzell Sr., Thomas Ives, Joe Walker

The deepest position group on the board has two backups (Miller, Patterson) who started at least five games last season. Further down the depth chart, there are a pair of University of Georgia products (Wims, Ridley) who could have starting potential down the line. How many receivers could the Bears start the season with is a fair question to ask and is worth exploring as the preseason gets under way.

Tight end

  1. Trey Burton
  2. Adam Shaheen
  3. Ben Braunecker

Others: Bradley Sowell, Ian Bunting (rookie), Dax Raymond (rookie), Ellis Richardson (rookie), Jesper Horsted (rookie).

The removal of Dion Sims (who was TE2 this time last year) has moved Shaheen and Braunecker up rung on the depth chart. But behind the top trio is a group of up-start prospects angling for what might be just one spot. There are four undrafted free agent rookies in that collection of tight ends, which means it could take some special plays in the preseason for someone to stand out.

Left tackle

  1. Charles Leno Jr.
  2. Cornelius Lucas
  3. T.J. Clemmings

Bradley Sowell was the Bears’ contingency plan in case of an injury to Leno at this time last year, but he is a tight end. Now it is Lucas, who has 37 games (8 starts) under his belt who takes over in that capacity.

Right tackle

  1. Bobby Massie
  2. Rashaad Coward
  3. Marquez Tucker

Coward held his own last year as he moved to the offensive line after starting his career as a nose tackle. Massie signed a multi-year deal in the offseason, so he will not be moved out of the starting lineup any time soon.

Center

  1. James Daniels
  2. Ted Larsen
  3. Sam Mustipher

It is weird not to see Cody Whitehair anywhere in this group.

Right guard

  1. Kyle Long
  2. Ted Larsen
  3. Jordan McCray

Left guard

  1. Cody Whitehair
  2. Alex Bars (rookie)
  3. Joe Lowery (rookie)
  4. Blake Blackmar (rookie)

Seeing Bars (an undrafted free agent rookie out of Notre Dame) as the second-string left guard behind Whitehair is eye-opening. Bars was a highly thought of offensive line prospect heading into his senior year before a knee injury early in the season threw a wrench in everything. Let’s keep an eye on Bars as the preseason rolls on because he could play his way onto the season-opening 53-man roster if he impresses in a reserve role.

Defensive tackle

  1. Akiem Hicks
  2. Roy Robertson-Harris
  3. Jonathan Harris (rookie)

Defensive end

  1. Bilal Nichols
  2. Jonathan Bullard
  3. Abdullah Anderson
  4. Jalen Dalton (rookie)

Nose tackle

  1. Eddie Goldman
  2. Nick Williams
  3. Daryle Banfield (rookie)

The rotation of players the Bears can throw at opposing offensive lines is nothing short of impressive. Players such as Robertson-Harris and Bullard would start on teams with lesser depth. But in Chicago, they are part of a wave of bodies who can keep each other fresh throughout games and ultimately the season ahead.

Outside linebacker #1

  1. Khalil Mack
  2. Isaiah Irving
  3. Kylie Fitts
  4. Chuck Harris (rookie)

Outside linebacker #2

  1. Leonard Floyd
  2. Aaron Lynch
  3. James Vaughters
  4. Matt Betts

With all due respect to the edge defenders who battled through camp and the preseason last year, this position group looks far more fearsome with Mack at the top.

Inside linebacker #1

  1. Danny Trevathan
  2. Nick Kwiatkoski
  3. Josh Woods
  4. Jameer Thurman

Inside linebacker #2

  1. Roquan Smith
  2. Joel Iyiegbuniwe
  3. Kevin Pierre-Louis

Because of his status as a training camp holdout, Smith was behind Kwiatkoski on the depth chart. But it did not take much time for Smith to step into the starting lineup, nor did it take long for him to emerge as an impact talent. Let us keep tabs on Iyiegbuniwe, a speedy inside linebacker who should be more comfortable as a second-year player.

Cornerback #1

  1. Kyle Fuller
  2. Buster Skrine
  3. Duke Shelley (rookie)

Others: Michael Joseph, Stephen Denmark (rookie)

Cornerback #2

  1. Prince Amukamara
  2. Kevin Tolliver II
  3. John Franklin III
  4. Clifton Duck

There are several battle to keep up with in the preseason. Because in addition to the nickel corner spot up for grabs between Skrine and Shelley, young corners such as Tolliver, Franklin, and Duck are also out there in search of an edge in the race for a backup role. It could come down to standing out on special teams for someone to break through.

Safety #1

  1. Eddie Jackson
  2. DeAndre Houston-Carson
  3. Sherrick McManis
  4. Doyin Jibowu (rookie)

Safety #2

  1. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
  2. Deon Bush
  3. Jonathon Mincy

Seeing Clinton-Dix atop the Bears’ depth chart is taking some time to get used to, but that will soon pass. It is interesting to see McManis listed as a safety and not cornerback on this depth chart. Perhaps he is better suited for that role in Chuck Pagano’s defense. Otherwise, I thought he did a swell job as a nickel cornerback in a pinch while Bryce Callahan was out last year.

Special teams

  • Kicker: Elliott Fry, Eddy Piñeiro
  • Long snapper: Patrick Scales, John Wirtel (2nd string)
  • Punter, Holder: Pat O’Donnell

Both Fry and Piñeiro are listed as “first-string” kickers. It’s as pure as a training camp competition gets. And it will heat up soon on Thursday when both will kick at Soldier Field against the Panthers.

Kick returner

  1. Cordarrelle Patterson
  2. Anthony Miller
  3. Marvin Hall
  4. John Franklin III

Punt returner

  1. Tarik Cohen
  2. Marvin Hall
  3. Eddie Jackson

Others: Duke Shelley, Clifton Duck

Jackson has been so superb as a safety in his first two years as a pro, it has become easy to forget about the elite skill he possessed as a return specialist at Alabama. Because of his importance to the defense, it is difficult to envision Jackson returning punts these days. But if a scenario presented itself and the Bears needed a spark, Jackson has shown a unique ability to take any ball he gets his hands on to the house.

And while it might seem like a stretch, remember how Cohen was buried on the kick returner depth chart last year until the Bears needed a big return in the waning moments of the team’s playoff loss to the Eagles. Perhaps this time around, the Bears would be more open to giving their playmakers more of an opportunity in a win-or-go-home scenario. Just keep that in the back of your mind for a later date.



Author: Luis Medina

Luis Medina is a Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at@lcm1986.