Around the NFL  

 

Projected 2014 starters: Chicago Bears

Around The League predicts the Week 1 starting lineups for all 32 teams, analyzing the potential impact of each rookie class. Click here for the complete series breakdown.

Chicago Bears Projected 2014 Starters
Offense
Defense
QB
DE
RB
DT
WR1
DT
WR2
DE
WR3
SLB
TE
WLB
LT
CB1
LG
CB2
C
CB3
RG
SS
RT
FS


» Chicago's offense has enviable continuity and talent. The starting group rivals any in football, which is amazing considering that Lovie Smith was the coach only two years ago. The starting wide receving duo is the best in the league, and Matt Forte remains a top-five running back, no matter what the "Top 100" show says.

» The only new potential starter here is Marquess Wilson, who we chose as the No. 3 receiver over veteran Josh Morgan. Wilson has a higher ceiling, but Morgan is a fine fallback option.

» The offensive line, so long a source of misery in Chicago, now looks stable. Center Roberto Garza could face competition from free-agent pickup Brian De La Puente, but this group is basically the same.

» The Bears would love it if their second- and third-round picks Ego Ferguson and Will Sutton earned starting jobs at defensive tackle sooner than later. They have a chance with lackluster veterans Stephen Paea and Jeremiah Ratliff penciled in as starters for now. Chicago's run defense will hinge long-term on how quickly Ferguson and Sutton develop.

» Fourth-round running back Ka'Deem Carey figures to have a big role right away as Matt Forte's primary backup.

» 2012 first-round pick Shea McClellin is moving to strongside linebacker. He'll be on the field plenty, but probably come off in the team's nickel package. Middle linebacker remains a concern with Williams battling last year's second-round pick Jon Bostic.

» Surefire new starters on the Chicago defense: Jared Allen, Lamarr Houston and first-round pick Kyle Fuller. That number could double if Ferguson, Sutton and a safety to be named later replace Chris Conte. We project free-agent pickup Ryan Mundy to win the safety job across from Conte, but fourth-round pick Brock Vereen and free-agent acquisition M.D. Jennings are also in the mix.

The latest "Around The League Podcast" breaks down the latest news and shares takeaways from rookie camps.

Fan Discussion

NFL News
CONTENT
15