Bears feeling out right mix of reps for Hester, Jeffery

Posted Sept. 07, 2012 @ 12:30 p.m.
Posted By Dan Parr

When the Bears drafted Alshon Jeffery in the second round this year and signed another highly respected return specialist, Eric Weems, it fueled speculation regarding Devin Hester’s role. The presence of Jeffery and Weems seemingly threatens to cut into Hester's opportunities at receiver and on kick returns.

However, Hester, the NFL record holder for kick-return touchdowns (17), is still the team's primary punt returner and kickoff returner. He also is listed as a starter at wide receiver, but the team’s confidence in Jeffery, listed behind Hester on the depth chart, is growing.

In fact, Jeffery’s development this summer has been a pleasant surprise. QB Jay Cutler has admitted that the rookie has been better than he and the Bears anticipated. There is no question about Hester being the starter at the moment, but the number of WR reps he and Jeffery get early this season will be a better indication of how the team feels about the two receivers.