Chicago Bears training camp: predictions and photos

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  • Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    New Bears Head Coach Marc Trestman at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Bears starting quarterback Jay Cutler with Coach Marc Trestman looking on at at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Linebacker Lance Briggs instructs the defense at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Record crowds (for Bourbonnais) of 15,000 observe the first practice after the 2013 preseason game debut at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Jay Cutler hands off a pass to Michael Bush at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Running back Michael Ford is tackled at practice at Chicago Bears training camp Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Chicago Bears training camp inBourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Matt Forte carries the ball while Isaiah Frey tries to make the stop at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Jay Cutler speaks with his offense at Chicgao Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL.

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Cornerback Tim Jennings at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL..

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Linebacker James Anderson at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Guard Eben Britton at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Fendi Onobun and Demontre Hurst make a play for the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Wide receiver Alson Jeffery catches the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Quarterback Matt Blanchard at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Wide Receiver Eric Weems dives to make the catch at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Cornerback Zack Bowman intercepts the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Devin Hester, Corey Wootton, Eric Weems and Cornelius Washington are all smiles on the sidelines at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Wide receiver Terrence Tollver returns the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Shea McClellin takes a three point stance at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Shea McClellin takes a three point stance at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Defensive end Corey Wootton advises a teammate at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Gabe Miller and Kyle Adams practicing at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Martellus Bennett tries to make a catch at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Alshon Jeffery dives for the catch at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall congratulate one another after a successful play at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Returner Devin Hester at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Derrick Martin returns the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Cornerback Isaiah Frey intercepts the ball at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Brandon Marshall leaps for a ball as Tim Jennings defends at Bears Training Camp, Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Charles Tillman and Tim Jennings talk on the sidelines at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Charles Tillman tries to tackle Matt Forte at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Young fans at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Devin Hester does situps during downtime at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

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    Devin Hester and Matt Slauson sign autographs for fans at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Bears fans at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Catching drills at Chicago Bears training camp in Bourbonnais, IL

  • Photograph: Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay

    Players head off the field after practice at Chicago Bears training camp, Bourbonnais, IL

Jamie DiVecchio Ramsay


Even after getting a sneak peek at the Bears practicing in Bourbonais last weekend before the upcoming third pre-season game Friday in Oakland, it's hard to say exactly what lies ahead for the team under its new coaching regime. What is certain is that Chicago seems to be shifting priority from defense to offense. After eight years of defense-centric Lovie Smith—with takeaways often trumping scoring on the offensive side—here comes new head coach Marc Trestman, who has had several successful runs as an offensive coordinator and a quarterback coach. 

Trestman may not be able to realize his plans this season given the roster he has inherited. The Bears have yet to establish a solid offensive line, a factor that leaves Cutler—2010's most-sacked quarterback—a vulnerable target for the rush. It could take a whole season to establish proper personnel to execute Trestman's goals on offense. On special teams, Devin Hester is back to returning exclusively, which fans hope brings a resurgence of the returns-for-touchdowns records he set before Smith experimented with Hester on offense.  
Despite the parting of veteran linebacker Brian Urlacher, a formidable core of the 2012 defense remains largely in tact, including Julius Peppers, Lance Briggs, Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman. However, the clock is ticking for this veteran defense, many of whom are in their thirties. Impending retirements on defense after this season might mean yet another year of rebuilding.  

But if Trestman is proving one thing in the early going it's that he is a genuine motivator. Not for nothing is his book titled Perseverence: Life Lessons on Leadership and Teamwork. Inspirational speeches in the locker room might be foreign to these players, but that doesn't mean there isn't a need for it. At camp, Trestman was letting his actions speak louder, running alongside players in drills, putting himself in the trenches. It's pretty clear he's invested. His reputation of nerd-level passion for the game could be an element that the franchise sorely needs.

Yesterday, legendary former Bears coach Mike Ditka took a little time away from repping his Vienna Beef sausage line to take in a practice. This was Trestman's doing. Da Coach came because the coach invited him. Jaded commentators might find it a trite move. But maybe a connection to the '85 champions is just what this team needs.


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