We will continue to update our Bears depth chart between now and when they report to training camp in Bourbonnais in late July, when the team will release its unofficial depth chart prior to the first preseason game.
This is our post-draft, pre-OTAs look at the Bears with the inclusion of 23 rookies — nine draft picks and 14 undrafted rookies.
Following OTAs and minicamp, we will have one more depth chart analysis prior to training camp.
WR: Alshon Jeffery / Marquess Wilson / Cameron Meredith / Derek Keaton*
WR: Kevin White / Josh Bellamy / Deonte Thompson / Darrin Peterson*
WR: Eddie Royal / Marc Mariani / Daniel Braverman* / Kieren Duncan*
OLT: Charles Leno Jr. / Nick Becton / Jason Weaver
OLG: Ted Larsen / Cody Whitehair* / Donovan Williams*
C: Hroniss Grasu / Manny Ramirez / Cornelius Edison
ORG: Kyle Long / Ted Larsen / Manny Ramirez / Adrian Bellard*
ORT: Bobby Massie / Tayo Fabuluje / John Kling* / Martin Wallace
TE: Zach Miller / Rob Housler / Ben Braunecker* / Joe Sommers*
TE/FB: Khari Lee / Gannon Sinclair / Paul Lasike / Greg Scruggs
QB: Jay Cutler / Brian Hoyer / David Fales / Matt Blanchard
RB: Jeremy Langford / Ka’Deem Carey / Jordan Howard* / Jacquizz Rodgers / Senorise Perry
Rookies will have to earn starting roles through reps over the next 3-4 months, which is why Cody Whitehair and Jordan Howard are backups on this depth chart, and they’ll be involved in important competitions — Whitehair to start at left guard and Howard to be Jeremy Langford’s complement.
Center is another position we’ll hopefully learn more about in OTAs and minicamp to see where Hroniss Grasu is at after his first full offseason as he gets set to compete with Manny Ramirez, who played for John Fox and Dave Magazu in Denver.
The competition to be the backup swing offensive tackle includes several players without much NFL game experience — Tayo Fabuluje, Nick Becton and John Kling, among others. Of course, an injury to a tackle in a game may just move Kyle Long outside.
At wide receiver, there will be heated battles to get final roster spots with return abilities likely playing a key factor for players like Marc Mariani, Deonte Thompson and Daniel Braverman.
We split tight end into two roles — receiving and blocking — and these are very much subject to change based on how we start seeing these players utilized in team drills.
DE: Akiem Hicks / Will Sutton / Cornelius Washington / Kenton Adeyemi*
NT: Eddie Goldman / Terry Williams
DE: Mitch Unrein / Jonathan Bullard* / Ego Ferguson / Keith Browner
OLB: Pernell McPhee / Lamarr Houston / Sam Acho
ILB: Jerrell Freeman / Nick Kwiatkoski* / Christian Jones / Don Cherry*
ILB: Danny Trevathan / John Timu / Jonathan Anderson / Danny Mason
OLB: Willie Young / Leonard Floyd* / Roy Robertson-Harris* / Lamin Barrow
CB: Tracy Porter / Bryce Callahan / Jacoby Glenn / Taveze Calhoun*
FS: Adrian Amos / Omar Bolden / DeAndre Houston-Carson* / Demontre Hurst
SS: Harold Jones-Quartey / Deon Bush* / Chris Prosinski
CB: Kyle Fuller / Sherrick McManis / Deiondre’ Hall* / De’Vante Bausby / Kevin Peterson*
Just to get the offseason practices underway, we’ll let Jonathan Bullard and Leonard Floyd earn the “starting” roles. Things get tricky on defense when considering how often the Bears are in the nickel, and how much rotating they’ll do with defensive linemen.
Up front, some of the final remaining players from Phil Emery’s regime will be competing for roster spots — Cornelius Washington, Ego Ferguson and Will Sutton, all of whom showed flashes at some point in 2015 but had injuries derail seasons to varied extents.
The starting inside linebackers are set, and rookie Nick Kwiatkoski will be a top reserve. John Timu impressed the staff last year, leaving special teams to be a determining factor for Jonathan Anderson and Christian Jones.
Cornerback remains thin. Will the Bears add a veteran, like they did with Tracy Porter last June? Deiondre’ Hall will have his opportunities to get playing time.
Safety is an extremely young position, but it certainly has more speed and athleticism with rookies Deon Bush and DeAndre Houston-Carson to go along with second-year players Adrian Amos and Harold Jones-Quartey and former Bronco Omar Bolden.
PK: Robbie Gould
P: Pat O’Donnell / Ben LeCompte*
LS: Aaron Brewer / Patrick Scales
KR: Deonte Thompson / Omar Bolden / Marc Mariani / Daniel Braverman* / Kieren Duncan*
PR: Marc Mariani / Eddie Royal / Daniel Braverman*
Will there be a punting competition? Or a long snapper battle? Unlikely, as they are jobs to lose for Pat O’Donnell and Aaron Brewer, respectively, but it’s just another thing to monitor this summer. For the third phase, though, there will be quite the competition to be the Bears’ 2016 returner(s), a competition that is easily measurable in the preseason.