Considered a long shot to make the Chicago Bears roster due to a position switch, was fan favorite Jordan Lynch saved by new NFL practice squad rules?
Marc Trestman able to keep more projects in cupboard
As rule changes go, it’s not exactly a momentous one but for the right coach it can mean all the difference. So when the NFL decided to increase the size of team practice squads from eight players to ten, Bears head coach Marc Trestman may have cracked a bit of a smile. Those two extra slots, small as they may seem, could allow him to be a little more selfish on deciding which players he will try to keep around as pet projects.
One name that of course jumps out to fans is Jordan Lynch. The former Northern Illinois quarterback and Heisman finalist is a local fan favorite. Many would love to see him go from undrafted free agent to making his hometown team. Unfortunately thanks to a position switch to running back, he fell behind on the learning curve that limited his chances of making the roster in 2014. His best hope at this point is to find a way onto the practice squad, which itself is no guarantee given the other young running backs he’d have to beat out. Now with the squad size bigger, Trestman may have just the excuse he was looking for to keep Lynch around to continue grooming him as a future offensive weapon.
List of possible practice squad candidates:
Michael Ford – RB
It would be his second year on the squad. He has speed and special teams promise but hasn’t emerged as much of a blocker.
Jordan Lynch – RB
Having never played running back or special teams full-time, he has a lot of work to do but talent is undeniable, as is his versatility.
Senorise Perry – RB
His game-winning touchdown in week two of the preseason certainly helped his stock but he needs more than that to climb up the depth chart.
Ryan Groy – OG
An under-the-radar undrafted free agent out of Wisconsin who has looked pretty good in the preseason. Needs to get stronger but has definite potential.
Charles Leno Jr. – OT
The 7th rounder is the only Bears draft pick in danger of not making the roster, and that’s just because of how solid the teams’ depth is. Charles Leno Jr. is worth keeping around.
Dale Moss – WR
He hasn’t made many catches but when he has, Dale Moss has looked good. He is still learning the game but his size (6’3″) is what Chicago likes in its receivers.
Greg Herd – WR
Another big receiver trying to find his way in the league. Greg Herd was mined by Seattle in undrafted free agency last season. Very production at Eastern Washington.
David Bass – DE
His knack for the big play has kept him around but David Bass needs more consistency in his pass rush to make it.
Cornelius Washington – DE
His pass rush has improved but Cornelius Washington has really gotten better defending the run. A definite dark horse to make the roster, and probably lock for the practice squad.
DeDe Lattimore – LB
His chances for 2014 aren’t great. DeDe Lattimore has certain values but his lacking athletic potential really hurts his stock.
Jerry Franklin – LB
Primarily a special teams piece, Jerry Franklin could end up on the practice squad for just that reason.
Al Louis-Jean – CB
Cornerback is where the toughest decisions will be made because the Chicago Bears have gotten good performances from several young players. Al Louis-Jean is the most intriguing due to his size (6’2″) and has shown a nose for the football. Still very raw and needs time to polish his game.
Demontre Hurst – CB
Without a doubt the best run defender of the young corners on the team. Demontre Hurst is a great tackler with much improved discipline and instinct. He needs more impact plays in coverage.
C.J. Wilson – CB
Thankfully that is what C.J. Wilson pulled off in week two. Having missed an opportunity against Philadelphia, Wilson redeemed himself by sealing the Bears’ comeback win over Jacksonville with an interception.
Marcus Trice – S
Given the upheaval at safety, it’s not a surprise nobody is talking about Marcus Trice. They should be. A long shot tryout player at the start of camp, he has continued to quietly make progress, including making two tackles in week two of preseason. He’s short but fast and very active around the ball.
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