One of the most sure signs of a roster in a rebuilding phase is when a team aggressively churns through the bottom third of its roster. And while Chicago Bears GM Ryan Poles doesn’t want to call it a rebuilding, if it is walking and quacking like a duck, then it is rebuilding like one, too. Ain’t no shame in the game, no matter what you want to call it.
With that being said, one week after completing its NFL Draft and UDFA class, the Bears are doing the post-draft churn-and-burn. The team announced the following rookies have been signed:
• Christian Albright, LB, Ball State
• Jon Alexander, S, Charlotte
• Antonio Ortiz, LS, TCU
• Carson Taylor, DE, Northern Arizona
• A.J. Thomas, S, Western Michigan
• De’Montre Tuggle, RB< Ohio
That’s a whopping six players signed from the tryout invites the team was handing out last week. Clearly, a handful of young players made strong first impressions over the weekend. But in order to make room on the roster for those new guys, the following players have been cut:
• Master Teague, RB
• Landon Lenoir, WR
• Savon Scraper, WR
• Jaylan Alexander, LB
• Amari Carter, S
• Ladarius Mack, LB
It is notable that this group features five UDFAs the Bears brought in a week ago. As well as a player (Mack) who actually played a snap in a regular-season game. Tack on Tyrone Wheatley Jr., whose cut went down over the weekend, and the roster shakeup has all sorts of tentacles. Now I’m wondering if Lil’ Mack follows his brother Khalil out west to Los Angeles. After all, I maintain hat it would still be neat to see two brothers line up on opposite sides of the formation, pinning their ears back, and rushing the quarterback. That would be must-see-TV. Even if it is just for one snap.
As for the Bears ramifications, there are plenty. Though, they aren’t splashy.
Whether or not any of these players becomes a relevant long-term fixture in Chicago is almost irrelevant. The more important focus is the trial-and-error approach.
Chicago’s football team is in a place where it needs to (and can!) throw a bunch of stuff at a wall and see what sticks. And whatever doesn’t hang around, the team can dive back into the market, sift through whatever is available, and then give it a shot. The bottom third of a roster goes through enough changes as is, so I don’t see any harm in being aggressive about exploring options.