Chicago Sun-Times

Whew, Benson returns to work Tuesday

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Twenty-four hours later the Ced Watch has ended.

Running back Cedric Benson participated in the OTA on Tuesday at Halas Hall a day after he did not show up for Monday’s initial OTA. No word on why he wasn’t there but the workouts are voluntary and right now the only player known to be volunteering to miss the lot is middle linebacker Brian Urlacher.

Perhaps Benson will visit with media Wednesday when the workout is opened. We’ll see but he’s clammed up since talking the day after his arrest in Texas earlier this month.

Also, Rex Grossman took his turn with the first team on Tuesday. If the first two days are an indication, the quarterbacks will rotate days working with the ones. Kyle Orton was with the first team on Monday and presumably he’ll be back in that role Wednesday.

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Benson wasn't talking?? My gosh maybe he can pull an Urlacher and answer everything with a yes and a no. Actually it's probably good Benson doesn't talk everything that comes out his mouth is garbage anyway. What a group of class acts the Bears have on this team, way to go JA and Lovie.

And just what would Benson say to the media? 'Thank you for posting my grotesque mugshot for the world to see?' 'Thank you for proclaiming me guilty from day one?' 'Thank you for saying my days were numbered in Chi-town?'

Well bully for Cedric! It would only be too big of a wish for Benson not to show up and give the Org. more incentive to release the guy.

Cedric Benson is going to have to show up and perform this time around. I really think by mid pre-season Matt Forte' will be the starter. Reason #1 Benson's leg, who really know's how long it is going to hold up, especially for a guy that can't stay healthy before the plate and bolt. Reason #2 Matt Forte is young and healthy, and is known for his hard work habits. Finally reason #3 Matt Forte abilities as a three skill set back as a runner, receiver, and blocker will make the Bears offense more non predictable. I've supported Benson since they yelled his name in New York back in 2005, but I just don't know about how seriou he is about being a pro football player. If Benson comes on good, if not, oh well, we got Forte now GO BEARS!!

What a class act fan you are Creighton. Thanks for making us the Chicago Bears fans look like negative Nacy's!

Side note: Bulls have the number one draft pick in the 08 an 09 season. Point Gaurd anyone?

Bulls do have the top pick, YEAH!!!! Benson should be traded for the first bag of manure offered for him! Lesson to the wise never draft a Texas running back, P.S. GO IRISH!!!

I sure hope CB showed up in good shape. Last year it seemed like he couldn't run a play without gasping for air or being scraped off the turf from a teammate. Maybe he'll realize he's not so special and decides to finally play like a man.

I'd say the OTA's have about 1% impact on the season. The first 4 games of the year have the most to do with how a season goes. "Did they beat their competition?", and "did they come out of the beginning of the season healthy?", and "Are at least 3 rookies making a big impact, especially Chris Williams?". These questions cannot be answered by OTA's. OTA's are over rated, and I see them as something instituted at some point to make more money because of the insane interest in the league. THey didn't used to have them. I have no idea if they used to have mini camps, but it sure seems like those are fairly new as well.

I'd say OTA's are a way to somewhat control their players. This is all fine and dandy, but a player should not be held in a bad public light for skipping a "non-mandatory" OTA. If the player says they are doing their work, then we are obligated as true fans to honor their word until they are proven otherwise (like the first 4 weeks of the season).

I believe Urlacher is a professional, and has too much pride to not have the drive to dominate. He had good stats by average linebackers. HE knows he can do more with his ability, and he will work to do so. Besides, what would any athlete gain by slackin it? Nothing. Exactly. T. Harris has contract questions. He is worth the money, no doubt. But he has to stay healthy. I see the Bears maybe waiting it out maybe till next season's end to give him a new contract. The market has been set and will not rise much between now and then. The Bears know he is worth the big money if he is healthy. Nontheless, Harris is too injured to participate right now in non-contact drills. But he too will give his all to be the dominate DT that he knows he can be. Benson will ultimately split time with Forte, and return to being the excellent power back compliment he was behind T. Jones. These are issues that we assume will happen because no player ever gains from not giving thier all.

These 5 questions/issues will not be answered till the first month of the season.
1. Can Chris Williams get the job done? IF he does, then that makes the line a lot better in all of the positions. If not, then look for a 6-10 season.
2. Can the defense stay healthy? If yes, we know what they can do (05 and 06). If not, we know what they can do (04 and 07). This is singularly the biggest influence on if the Bears do well or not.
3. Can the running game be successful? I'd say the over/under for yards is 125/game with TOP at 32 minutes, and TD at 1 per game. If you are going to be a running team, then that must be your identity, and 125 per game should be a baseline for such a team.
4. Can the QB throw for 175 yds/ game and 2 TD's per game? The smart answer is "NO". He won't do it every game, but if 1, 2, &3 happen, then Bears should blow out the opponents when the QB does have a good day.
5. Will the Bears continue to flourish from "extra/bonus" scores from defense and special teams? This is a hallmark of the Smith regime. The smart answer is "yes" they probably will.

As the off-season continues, I will continue to hope that the aswer to all those questions are "YES" until I see otherwise. I have more fun being optomistic abou my team than the other way around.


Let's wait and see what happens before shouting in joy or whining in despair. If predictions are in order, at least make them imaginative ones. Rex will set new touchdown records for the Bears, Booker will get back to his old Bear form, Ced will average 120 yards a game, Williams will be rookie of the year and Bradley will make Berrian seem like a slowpoke.All this plus a rejuvenated Bear defense leads to a Super Bowl win and an undefeated season.Silly expectations? Certainly, but wouldn't it be nice?

I have been waitiing since Benson was drafted for him to show up, Benson is a total no show. I am starting to firmly believe that Benson goal in life was to be drafted in the top 5 in the NFL so he could become a multi millionaire.

I also believe that Benson does not or did not have a goal to be a top running back in the NFL, it seemed to be all about just getting picked.

Forte on the other hand has stated goals of exccelling in the NFL, I hope he will succeed. His workout regimen is exceptional and he is faster than Benson.

Prophet excellent job on the analysis. Benson is the biggest waste, as well as a stain on our roster. Please let Forte be the answer so we can cut ties with this guy. Who cares if Benson can compiment Forte like he did with Jones. 30 million dollars to compliment another player, we have Wolfe and Peterson who don't even cost a fraction of Benson's check. I believe the team will excell this year.

Go Bears

All good questions looking forward to seeing them play it out. If Lovie is really telling the truth and the open competion is actually taking place there might be some surprizes thats is what I am looking for I hope Lovie does not disappoint. Come on Creighton lighten up a little I think the tenure of Benson will play out on the field not in the blog and other media once again though it does create a atmosphere that makes Benson perform or else. I stiil think there are three running backs on the team better than he is at this point Forte, Pope and Lawrence.

Ryan- If the Bears offense doesn't make a transformation over night from horribly inept to decent, then they'll blow out no team. They'll have to establish a ball controlled offense in order to keep the opposing offense off the field, and give the defense time to rest. I foresee a lot of close games again next year. If they can limit PA, then they have a chance to be successfull.

Mike: "And just what would Benson say to the media? 'Thank you for posting my grotesque mugshot for the world to see?' 'Thank you for proclaiming me guilty from day one?' 'Thank you for saying my days were numbered in Chi-town?'"

... Does anyone know how to post a resume to Monster?
... I really wish Ricky had been there.
... Where all da white women at?
... I've been stealing my paycheck for years, the beating finally caught up to me.
... (the rookies) are stealin' our jorbs!!!

sometimes guys like Benson need a good vet around to show him the ropes. let's be honest look at matt leinart this guys has been awful but you don't see the organization giving up on him. last yr was ceds first year starting give the guy sometime. you haters want everything yesterday and it's not how it works in reality something you guys need to come back to. Rex is the same way put talented wrs like the ones in had in hs or college and you'll see what kind of qb he can be. Rex's highs and lows came with mediocre to average wrs. So If you are going to comdemn the guy for inconsistant play with with mediocre wrs you might as well praise him for what he accomplished the first 7 games with mediocre wrs. Not too mention i'd love to see what he could be like if he had a wr like t.o or moss. when was the last time we had a wr in chicago you could just throw up the ball and he'd come down with it. the answer Booker and that was back in 2001. give these guys a break you haters. find another job or team you can hate on the real fans are tired of your whinning like little school girls.

another thing Orton had the same wrs Rex had and not one time has he out performed the guy. Stop telling yourself the guy played good the last three games of the season had not the defense and special teams played extremely well and a green bay headed for the playoffs i doubt it would have looked that easy. I recall the minnesota game the guy threw the ball to jason mckies feet on a huge 4 and 1 with no around him. Orton cannot play in a hostile enironment. The first game is against the Colts and I know if Orton starts we will not be able to keep up with the Colts on points period.

Grossmans best WR were the corner backs on the other team!
Jearseyboy its not all the WRs play that has put Rex on a fine line, its his inabilaty to have pocket awareness, he repeates his mistakes all the time he should look at the film on the sidelines during a game, last year the O-Line suxed, with his size having NO mobility is realy a disadvantage. When was the last time you seen a QB in the modern day football era that was 6ft or under with no mobility make it in the NFL.

come on people, how easy is it to always blame the QB or running back, how easy we forget how successful benson was running in 06, it was a nice mixup between him and Thomas Jones, and then in 07 he gets the workload and the O-line quits blocking, im not picking on all of them, Kreutz of course is a force, and Garza played very disciplined last year, it was our tackles....both of them, especially fred miller, and the other guard where we had brown hurt for most the season playing, and then shuffling a few guys in the mix. Anyway, a team is only as good as their offensive line, thats no joke, Skill position players can only do so much, all you haters that say benson cant break tackles, how the heck do you break a tackle when you get hit in the backfield by 3 guys, or you say benson doesnt run hard, well in the beginning of the season in 07 he runs hard into the back of his lineman, people say he cant see the holes, what holes??? And then later he tries to be patient and let things open up, so then what...hes not running hard, unbelievable and extremely annoying, the kids got talent, but us Chicago fans like we usually do, beat up on our skill position players when in reality the problem lies much deeper.

Another thing Jearseyboy how many teams can match point to point with the Colts souly on offense. What do you think its up to the QB to make all the plays score all the touchdowns. Its a TEAM sport Jearseyboy. This isnt Golf nor is it singles tennis.
One guy isnt going to make or break a season. One guy can make an impact on the season but isnt going to trash the whole team because he is or isnt in the game.

Come on now jearseyboy your better then this.

remember there has been high profile QBs on teams that couldnt get it done. There has been some bad QBs on teams that has gotten it done. Its a toss up. I just hope that all the fans wont think just because 1 player is starting the whole season will be nothing. Some had that attitude in the 05 season well.............

Brando, I hear what your saying but what does Rex height has to do with anything. Drew Brees is shorter than Rex Grossman. your point. The guy does have pocket presence but everyone seems to forget when he first came into the league he would pull the ball down and run. His first season ending injury came from scrabbling and running he juked a guy and tore his knee. The only reason the guy has not been as mobile in the pocket as he used to be is because the organization wants him to stay in the pocket so he doesn't get hurt. The film don't lie and the last 2 years there were no pockets for him to throw in. All I'm saying is Orton pound for pound cannot beat Rex. The haters are donkey riders I'll substitute what I really want to say. Many of them were mad when we drafted hester now all of them are Hester fanatics. I'm sick and tired of haters.

Jerseyboy is sick and tired of haters and yet he/she/it (???) is hatin' on Kyle Orton. Golly-gee gumba, hypocrisy is alive and well!!! I'm glad you can tell so much from one player after playing a total of eighteen games, fifteen of which came from hiz rookie season when he wasn't supposed to even be on the field. Kudos to you My-Jersey-is-so-small-it-cuts-off-circulation-to-my-head-Boy.

By the way, that pass to Mckie on 4th and 1 that you so clearly "remember," was actually thrown way over his head.

Not making fun of ya Jerseyboy but I was kinda saying height and mobility. Sure there are 6ft and under QBs that have had good careers but they also have had mobility. Breese does have pretty good mobiliy as well as Tony Romo.

I fully appreciate the analysis/perspective that the fans provide on this blog. I'm a little disheartened because of all the focus dedicated to Benson and Grossman/Orton. I have yet to read one post that breaks down the potential for the offensive line and the individual players that make up this unit.

Metcalf was benched last year because he failed to display the necessary quickness/mobility to block on the move or prevent gap penetration. Nobody has seen Beekman play pro football. Despite his pro bowl recognition, Olin Kreutz is on the downside of his career. Tait is as old as Fred Miller before he broke down in '07. Williams is an unproven rookie. Garza is not bad, but he isn't any good either. St.Clair is our starting LT!

Is the Bears' offensive line better now than at the beginning/end of '07? My opinion is that it most certainly is NOT.

You can be sure that an "average" line will be overwhelmed by about 50% of the D-lines in the league. An average line with age concerns and other skill/prospect limitations most likely will fail to reach its restricted potential.

I'm just not sure how a quarterback/running back is supposed to perform without time or space.

Unfortunately, it doesn't appear that the fans posting on this to understand or comment on the line. I guess that it is much easier to watch the ball carriers without any appreciation for the blocking schemes and techniques that are required to execute run/pass plays.

Until the foundation of the offense is rebuilt, fans will continue to "misdiagnose" the offensive disease (RB/QB vs. OG/C) and treat the symptoms by continuing to fall in and out of love (hate?) with skilled players.

I agree with you. The o-line contrary to popular belief is the heart of an offense. People love to talk about how great such n such receiver is or how terrible whathisface running back is but they never stop to see why. Every succesful team has a solid o-line supporting them. For example the Colts they have a great o-line and its just getting better. Do you think Peyton,Wayne,Addai and Harrison would be able to put up such great numbers without them? Now looking at the opposite end of the spectrum last years St.Louis Rams. Great talent at the skill posistions but a crappy o-line end result a 3-13 season. Benson has the talent to be a feature back if he can stay healthy and show determination to silence the critics and Rex although he wont be an elite QB could be what Elvis Grbac was for the Ravens in 2000 a game manager who gives his defense time to rest all they need is an o-line but the way things are looking it wont happen anytime soon. I also agree with Jerseyboy on the Devin Hester subject. Everyone was pissed when they drafted him until he got his hands on the ball and the rest as they say is history. Dont be switch-siders if your a real fan give your team a chance before you write them off.

I do agree that this line has to gel together. i would hate to see a constint rotation at the gaurd possition. For that is the week point. Heck just saying that made me realize that besides the Center possition the whole line at every possition has question marks. I have no idea what round pick the Bears gave up fro Garza (from the 49ers) but in the 06 season he prove he could play. Looking back at the Super Bowl he was the weak link. I do have to say if Garza and and the WRs were in game mode it would have been a better effort in the Super Bowl. Well Garza I think is the hidden importance. If he can be the run blocker like he was in 06 it will be one of many steps that could lead the Bears to sucsess.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on May 20, 2008 5:10 PM.

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