LAKE FOREST – Training camp is back in full force and the NFL season is right around the corner. Each day during Bears training camp, Shaw Local will grade the Bears’ offensive and defensive performances.
Shaw Local Senior Bears analyst Hub Arkush and Bears beat reporter Sean Hammond will be out at Halas Hall in Lake Forest each day during camp. Follow Hammond on Twitter here, and follow Arkush on Twitter here.
These grades are subjective and take into account many different factors. No two practices are the same, either. Some days the team will work on specific scenarios like the red zone or two-minute drill, while other days practice could be reduced to a simple walk-through. A good day or a bad day in training camp certainly won’t make or break the season.
Saturday marked the fourth day of practice. The Bears are off Sunday.
There looked to be a heavy focus on the run game in practice Saturday. David Montgomery and Khalil Herbert saw a lot of touches. There weren’t too many explosive plays in the passing game. Rookie center Doug Kramer saw a lot of snaps at center with Lucas Patrick out with a hand injury. Rookies Ja’Tyre Carter and Zachary Thomas continue to see reps at guard.
In a two-minute drill, the offense did successfully drive down the field near the goal line, but settled for a field goal as time was set to expire.
Offensive star of the day: Velus Jones Jr.
Jones made the best catch of the day with a diving effort on a deep ball from Justin Fields during 11-on-11. Jones was matched up with rookie cornerback Kyler Gordon in one-on-one coverage.
In 11-on-11, the defense didn’t get burned badly except for Jones’ big catch. The focus was on the run game, but it’s still hard to glean much from the defensive line until the players have pads on. The defense didn’t create many turnovers. There was one borderline fumble on a dump off to the running back that was scooped up by cornerback Jaylon Johnson, but it likely would’ve been called an incomplete pass. It probably required video review.
Defensive star of the day: Matt Eberflus
Eberflus gets the nod for grabbing the microphone halfway through practice and thanking the fans for coming. Luckily, the Bears are putting the pads on soon.