Montez Sweat is Excited About Rookie Austin Booker

bears draft pick Austin booker
bears draft pick Austin booker

If you’re looking for a training camp story to follow this summer, then keep your eyes on Austin Booker.

Booker, a fifth-round pick by the Chicago Bears in last April’s NFL Draft, seems to have caught the eye of teammate Montez Sweat. Like Sweat, Booker is a defensive end. But unlike Sweat, Booker doesn’t have ample experience as a pro. Good thing that Sweat seems willing to be a helping hand in the rookie’s development.

This exchange between a reporter and Montez Sweat discussing Austin Booker, his potential, and what can be done to get the most out of the rookie is encouraging to hear:

Reporter: What do you see in Austin Booker?

Montez Sweat: “I’m excited about him. He’s got the whole make-up. From the frame, to the pass-rush ability. He’s going to be a great player.”

Reporter: What can you do to help make sure Austin gets the most out of his potential?

Montez Sweat: I just gotta be that big brother for him. Be there for him when he has a question. Just help him along the way just like the vets helped me.

Montez Sweat sounds like he is ready to take Austin Booker under his wing

I absolutely love the give-and-take in this interaction between a reporter and Bears defensive end Montez Sweat. Firstly, the question (and follow-up) were perfect. Those are the kinds of questions that pique my interest this time of year when rookies and vets are together at minicamp. But the response from Sweat when discussing Austin Booker is even better. There are few things I enjoy as much as hearing a successful veteran speak openly about being a willing mentor for a rookie on the rise. Football is better when it is passed down from the old heads to the new school.

2024 CHICAGO BEARS DRAFT PICKS: Everything You Need to Know About Fifth-Round Pick Austin Booker

bears draft pick Austin booker
© Evert Nelson/The Capital-Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

As for Sweat’s excitement about Booker, I share it.

Austin Booker was on our radar before the 2024 NFL Draft. Heck, BN’s own Patrick Flowers had Booker in his sights as a possible Bears fit on draft weekend. Booker, who projected to be a Day 2 pick, ended up sliding all the way down to the fifth round. At that point, Booker’s talent was so enticing for the Bears that they were willing to give up a future fourth-round pick to trade back into the 2024 draft in order to select Booker. If Sweat can teach Booker the ways of the Force some of the tricks of the trade and aid in his development, we’ll look back as the juice being worth the squeeze on that trade.

And it’s not as if Austin Booker needs to be a finished product by the end of his rookie season. Ideally, the Bears will deploy the Kansas product as a situational pass-rusher early in his career. Getting the rookie’s feet wet in situations where he can just pin his ears back and attack the quarterback seems like a good place to start his development. Ideally, Booker will develop into a starting defensive end who shines opposite of Montez Sweat. Again, it doesn’t need to be immediate. But we’ll cross that bridge if and when we get to it.

The Bears won’t kick off the regular season for another 96 days. As for the preseason, those games aren’t on our radar for another 58 days. But training camp in July feels like it is right around the corner (even though a date hasn’t been officially announced just yet). However, when camp dates become public knowledge and the gates at Halas Hall open to the public, you can count me in as among those who will want to keep tabs on what Austin Booker is doing.

written by

Luis C. Medina, who you can find on Twitter at lcm1986, has been covering the Chicago Bears at Bleacher Nation since 2017. Since then, he has written about 3 head coaches, 5 play-callers, and 11 starting quarterbacks. Previously, Luis wrote about the Cubs and MLB at BN (2015-16) and worked in the Chicago Tribune sports department (2011-16). He also co-hosted a Cubs postgame show, Outside the Ivy, in 2019.

more bears news

Free Agent Connor Williams Reportedly Talking With Teams — How About the Bears?

It is just about time for NFL free agents who want to play in 2024 but don't have homes to get serious about finding a landing spot. One name I'm keeping an eye on as a possible fit for the...

Tory Taylor’s Position Coach Explains the Biggest Difference Between College and the Pros

Every NFL rookie goes through an adjustment period. Yes, even a punter such as Chicago Bears rookie fourth-round pick Tory Taylor. As part of a Q&A series with college coaches who had Bears rookies under their wings back when they...

WATCH: J.J. McCarthy Throws Out a Disastrous First Pitch at the Twins Game

The down time between the end of NFL minicamps and the start of training camp leaves players with ample free time. And for Minnesota Vikings first-round pick J.J. McCarthy, that means there is still time to work on his throwing...

WR Change, Khan on Fields, NFL Countdown Continues, and Other Bears Bullets

Before we talk Bears, there is something I need to get something out of my system. In an attempt to placate my mother's Force Ghost, I had pizza with mushrooms on it. Oh, the things I do at Pizza Club....

How Is Justin Fields Doing With His New Team?

It sounds like former Justin Fields has a lot of work to do if he wants to pass Russell Wilson on the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback depth chart. Here is an excerpt from the latest on the Steelers beat via The...

Unsigned 2024 NFL Draft First-Round Picks

Quarterback Caleb Williams and wide receiver Rome Odunze are among the 2024 NFL Draft picks who remain unsigned. Am I bothered? No. Worried? Not in the slightest. Concerned? Hardly. Unless something pops up out of seemingly nowhere (as was the...

Chicago Bears 2024 Training Camp Report Date Announced

Chicago Bears training camp is around the corner. The team's official report date for training camp 2024 is July 16 for rookies and July 19 for veterans. If you're someone who likes a calendar countdown, we're only 28 days from...

Around the NFL: Raheem Morris on Cousins and Penix, Book Your Trip to Green Bay Now, More

NFL Notes — Raheem Morris spoke at length with The Athletic's Robert Mays recently. And, of course, he was asked about the decision to sign Kirk Cousins to a massive free-agent deal and then draft Michael Penix Jr. with the...

The Bears-Packers Rivalry is Extending to a New Medium

The Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers are taking their rivalry from the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field and messy grass surfaces of the Soldier Field to whatever they call the plot of land that is used to play cornhole....

The Chicago Bears Have a New Return Specialist

We're about 24 hours removed from the Chicago Bears hosting their final practice of the OTA program, and the team has already made an addition to the roster with eyes on Training Camp 2024. Prepare yourself to welcome wide receiver...

Latest News

Liberty vs Sparks: Best Bets, Player Props & Computer Picks – June 20

The Los Angeles Sparks (4-11) will look to Dearica Hamby (eighth in WNBA, 18.3 points per game) to help beat Breanna Stewart (fifth in league, 19.2) and the New York Liberty (12-3) on Thursday, June 20, 2024 at Barclays Center,...

Mariners vs. Guardians: Injury Report, Updates & Probable Starters – June 20

In the final game of a three-game set at Progressive Field, the Cleveland Guardians (45-26) meet the Seattle Mariners (44-32), Thursday at 1:10 PM ET.Curious about who's available to play for the Mariners and the Guardians? Keep reading to see...

Yankees vs. Orioles: Injury Report, Updates & Probable Starters – June 20

At Yankee Stadium on Thursday, the New York Yankees (51-25) meet the Baltimore Orioles (48-25), with first pitch at 4:05 PM ET.Looking to see who's playing for the Yankees and the Orioles? Keep reading for complete injury reports for both...

Cardinals vs. Giants: Injury Report, Updates & Probable Starters – June 20

The St. Louis Cardinals (36-37) will host the San Francisco Giants (36-39), Thursday at 7:15 PM ET, with both teams on losing streaks -- two and two straight, respectively.Looking to see who's in and who's out for the Cardinals and...

New York Liberty vs. Los Angeles Sparks: Start Time, Streaming Live, TV Channel, How to Watch

Dearica Hamby and the Los Angeles Sparks (4-11) are up against Breanna Stewart and the New York Liberty (12-3) on Thursday, June 20, 2024 at Barclays Center. The game tips off at 7:00 PM ET on Prime Video and WWOR.Watch...

Where to Watch Argentina vs. Canada: Copa America 2024 TV Channel, Start Time and Live Stream

On Thursday, June 20 at 8:00 PM ET, Argentina squares off against Canada at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in its opening match of the 2024 Copa America's group stage.Go to Fox Sports 1 to watch this match live.Watch the entire Copa America...

Liberty vs Sparks Prediction: Picks, Live Odds & Moneyline – June 20

Dearica Hamby and the Los Angeles Sparks (4-11) are up against Breanna Stewart and the New York Liberty (12-3) on Thursday, June 20, 2024 at Barclays Center. The matchup begins at 7:00 PM ET on Prime Video and WWOR.Liberty vs....

Where to Watch Spain vs. Italy: UEFA European Championship 2024 TV Channel, Start Time and Live Stream

Spain and Italy play at 3:00 PM ET on Thursday, June 20 in the second match of the 2024 UEFA European Championship group stage (Group B). After winning their first game, both teams have a record of 1-0-0 in group-stage...

Royals vs. Athletics: Free Live Stream, TV Channel, How to Watch

Aiming for a series sweep, JJ Bleday and the Oakland Athletics (28-48) take on the Kansas City Royals (41-34) on Thursday at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, with first pitch scheduled for 3:37 PM ET.Keep reading to find out all the details...

How to Watch Brewers vs. Padres: Live Stream or on TV

The Milwaukee Brewers (44-30), who will give the ball to Bryse Wilson, visit the San Diego Padres (38-40) with Adam Mazur on the mound, Thursday at 9:40 PM ET.The article below will give you everything you need to watch Milwaukee...

more bears news