As reported here Monday, the Bears officially promoted rookie safety Josh Gattis to the 53-man roster.
Gattis takes the place of Kevin Payne, who was placed on injured reserve with a broken right arm. Payne may require surgery, but is expected to make a full recovery for participation in the offseason program.
"There is a lot that is similar [in terms of the cover-two scheme] here to what I played in college," said Gattis, who was informed of the promotion Monday.
Gattis was selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the fifth round with the 150th overall selection from Wake Forest. He made 33 career starts there and was an all-ACC first team choice as a senior.
It's expected that Gattis will be involved on special teams to start with. He was on the practice squad for two weeks and was reporting for morning meetings with DB coaches Steve Wilks and Gil Byrd to get up to speed as fast as possible. Gattis never hit it off in Jacksonville where the coaching staff was opting to go with veterans in a win-now mode.
Payne, also a fifth-round pick and taken 167th overall, was a quick learner who proved that his future is bright. He was drafted from Louisiana-Monroe where he replaced Chris Harris. It was Payne's development that made it possible for the club to trade Harris to the Carolina Panthers for a fifth-round pick.
The promotion of Gattis creates a vacancy on the practice squad.