Chicago Sun-Times

Jennings may have played his way into staring lineup

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Tim Jennings gets my game ball.

Bears coach Lovie Smith said he put the backup cornerback in the game for Zack Bowman because he wasn't satisfied with that position early in the game. I can only assume he was talking about Bowman failing to tackle James Jones in the open field in the first quarter. It came on a third-and-12 late in the quarter when defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli had called an all-out blitz. Bowman whiffed on the tackle, forcing Danieal Manning to push Jones out of bounds after an eight-yard gain.

Jennings had two other big hits on Donald Driver later in the game and may warrant more playing time moving forward.

"I didn't know at all," Jennings said when asked if he knew he would play as much as he did. "That's one thing that surprised me. Coach told me to be ready and the next play threw me in there. This isn't my first rodeo. I played a lot at Indy. But this is a great team and I just wanted to be out there playing with some of the best guys in the league at linebacker and secondary and defensive line."

Of course, the game turning play came when Brian Urlacher and Lance Briggs tackled Jones near the sideline, forced a fumble that somehow stayed in bounds. Jennings recovered to set up the Bears' game-winning drive.

When Jennings spoke after the game he was under the assumption that it was Briggs and not Urlacher who forced the fumble.

"I told Lance, "That was all you,'" he said. "I appreciate that. I love him. It just happened to bounce my way and I was able to stay in bounds and recover it, but that was all Lance."

Jennings finished with seven tackles, behind only Urlacher's and Briggs' nine.

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3 Comments

Is it just me? For a coach who has been maddingly reluctant to make a change, Lovie Smith seems like he is not screwing around very much this year.

Look at the changes, Beekman, moving Peanut to the other side, Lance Louis, really the whole O-line, the fullback position, Shaw, Tommy Harris, Manning to strong safety, cutting a lot of draft picks this year, giving Webb and Melton quality reps against the Pack, sitting Chris Harris in the 4th at Detroit, and now this deal with Bowman.

Melton was playing late in the 4th quarter last night. That means that when they decided Harrison needed game reps, that they benched Harris in favor of Melton? By all accounts I have heard, Harris knew that was coming.

It looks like the message is pretty loud and clear. Play well, or we will give somebody else a try. I don't remember Lovie Smith having that quick of a trigger finger.

I'd like to start out by apologizing on behalf of the Chicago Bears and their fanbase to ESPN, namely Trent Dilfer & Steve Young, sorry guys, the better team just had to win last night. To me, listening to these guys after the game, you got the feeling that both Dilfer and Young were disappointed the Packers lost, and they acted like the Pack was the better team, heres a newsflash to Mr Dilfer & Mr Young, any team that commits 17 penalties doesn't deserve to win on this planet, or any other, period. End of discussion.

Tim Jennings was impressive, although I am disappointed in Zack Bowman, I was expecting big things from him this season. But kudos to the coaching staff for making the move, you simply have to get you best personnel on the field if you want to compete, Chicago did that last night by putting Jennings in for Bowman. Bowman was getting burnt last night early on, and Lovie Smith made the switch, again, I like the fact Chicago's coaching staff is getting the better players on the field. After the game when asked about the switch, Lovie Smith said "Tim Jennings was doing some good things in practice" and that he was working hard. You gotta like the player evaluation thats going on at Halas Hall so far this year.

I see rookie J'Marcus Webb got some playing time last night at right tackle, although Kevin Shaffer did a pretty solid job, I think its a matter of time before Webb makes his way into the starting lineup, maybe not this season, but probably by next summer Webb could be Chicago's starting right tackle. I think he'll be next years Lance Louis, a 7th round find that made their way into the starting lineup GO BEARS!!

i don't know about webb being the starting right tackle. this all boils down to chris williams and here's why. his arms are to short to play left tackle good. fast players run around him. now when he gets healthy will he be back at left tackle where he just isn't good. that's going to say everything about lovie smith. if he plays it needs to be at right tackle or he needs to improve on the sideline will healing.in truth williams performance has earned him a seat on the bench.will the general manager get in the way if lovie sits williams. tommie harris should have been sit a long time ago, to give the other tackles a chance to grow.he has been a dog and not a bear since he signed that big contract.thankyou warren sapp for calling tommie out, cause he has not responded.as for lovie, calling fourth and inches, it is the right call but wrong running back cause you don't send a tall running back who stands up running to run at the goal line, sorry if that hurts but it's the truth. let chester or the third string back get the yard, end of subject.

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on September 28, 2010 10:42 AM.

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