Chicago Bears preseason notes: 3 players who helped their cause Thursday, 3 who didn’t

Chicago Bears wide receiver Nsimba Webster runs with the ball as Seattle Seahawks cornerback Tariq Woolen moves in for the tackle during the first half, Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022, in Seattle.

The Bears defeated the Seattle Seahawks, 27-11, in a preseason game Thursday in Seattle. They have won both of their preseason contests. Their final preseason game is Aug. 27 in Cleveland.

NFL teams will have to cut their rosters down to 80 players by Tuesday, and then to 53 by Aug. 30. Here are three Bears players who helped their cause to make the team (or earn a starting spot), and three players who didn’t, during Thursday’s game.

Three players who helped their cause

WR Velus Jones Jr.

Jones, the team’s third-round draft pick, is in no danger of being cut. But Thursday night’s 48-yard punt return late in the first quarter might have cemented Jones as the team’s return man. He was a co-SEC special teams player of the year last season at Tennessee, so it’s no surprise that he’s an electric return man.

Jones did cough up the ball on the opening kickoff, but he recovered his own fumble. He also caught one pass on offense for 4 yards. This was his first preseason action after sitting out the first game.

WR Nsimba Webster

Speaking of special teams, return specialist Nsimba Webster had a 58-yard kick return late in the third quarter. He also caught four passes for 25 yards with the offense. Webster came to Chicago as a return specialist last year, and that remains the biggest strength of his game.

He’s likely fighting for a spot on the team. If he can prove himself to be reliable pass catcher for this offense, that will help his cause tremendously.

OL Teven Jenkins

Jenkins started the game at right guard. The second-year pro hadn’t played at guard during a game since early in his college career at Oklahoma State. At first glance, Jenkins looked pretty good at guard. He only helped his case to hold onto a roster spot. He might not be the starter at right guard – veteran Michael Schofield is listed as the starter on the depth chart – but if he can play tackle and guard, he will be a valuable piece moving forward.

Three players who hurt their cause

RB De’Montre Tuggle

The undrafted rookie out of Ohio had a decent night carrying the ball – he finished with 41 rushing yards on 12 carries – but a special teams blunder likely hurt his case for a roster spot. Tuggle ran into his own punt return man, Dazz Newsome, on a punt in the fourth quarter. Newsome fumbled the ball away, and the Seahawks recovered. The fumble was on Tuggle more than it was on Newsome.

DB Jaylon Jones

Jones is an undrafted cornerback out of Ole Miss. He has seen first-team reps with the defense during camp in recent weeks with Kyler Gordon and Kindle Vildor both missing time because of injuries. Seahawks wide receiver Penny Hart beat Jones pretty badly for a 41-yard gain in the second quarter.

It should be noted that Jones rebounded and broke up a pass on the next play when Geno Smith targeted him again. The Bears have given Jones a hard look during camp, but he might be destined for a spot on the practice squad.

OT Shon Coleman

The Bears signed Coleman, a 30-year-old veteran, in May. It was a curious signing. Between injuries and a COVID-19 opt-out in 2020, Coleman hasn’t played in a regular-season game since 2017, when he started all 16 games for a winless Browns team.

That prolonged absence has led to a shaky camp for Coleman. On Thursday, he struggled in the passing game and was called for two penalties.

Sean Hammond

Sean Hammond

Sean is the Chicago Bears beat reporter for Shaw Media. He also contributes to high school football coverage at Friday Night Drive. Sean has covered various sports at the amateur, college and professional levels since 2012. He joined Shaw Media in 2016.