The perception last season was that Ricky Manning Jr. was overlooked in a big way when seventh-round pick Trumaine McBride was used primarily as a starter in Nathan Vasher’s absence.
It was reality in the sense that starting is a big deal. Whose in the lineup on a week-to-week basis speaks volumes about who the coaching staff believes in most.
But the statistics paint a somewhat different picture. Manning was on the field for 544 of the 1,076 defensive snaps last season. McBride? 584. About the same. It marked a decrease in defensive snaps for Manning of only 55 from 2006, or a little less than one game. Interestingly, Manning was actually on the field more for the Bears in 2007 than he was in 2006 because of an increased role on special teams.