Bears name Phil Emery General ManagerContinue reading.
General manager Phil Emery runs down Bears’ roster as he prepares for next week’s NFL draft
Phil Emery likes this time of the year — and the extra two weeks’ worth of lead up to next week’s NFL draft.
“I’ve heard reports of people complaining about it,” The Bears general manager said Thursday at Halas Hall. “I don’t know what they’re complaining about.
“This is the juice in the personnel cycle. This is where the fun is.
“So these discussions, this extra little bit of space between the true (undrafted free agent) market — and ours went long — so this space between that and the draft has been very beneficial.
“It’s allowed us to have less rushed conversations and to look at things from all different angles and to think future and now and to have those conversations and to come back and revisit and to try to look at fitting this piece of the puzzle from all different angles.”
Emery’s next week will figure meetings, both in planning the team’s draft and the undrafted free agents the Bears want to target when it’s over.
He also needs to make sure he knows what he has on the roster already.
Here’s a look at what Emery said about current Bears players in his wide-ranging press conference Thursday:
• The team hasn’t settled on whether safety Ryan Mundy is a free or strong safety. “We’re going to find out,” he said. “That’s what OTAs and summer camp are all about.”
• The Bears added running back Shaun Draughn last week “to create competition for that position” behind starter Matt Forte.
“We need to find the right back for that backup position,” he said. “So Shaun is part of that, and so is (second-year player) Michael Ford and whoever else we bring in either through the draft or free agency or a veteran signing. We’re going to find ways to provide competition for that position.”
• The Bears “chased” wideout Josh Morgan a few years ago, before he signed with the Redskins, and were happy to get their man this time around.
“Things didn’t work out for him in Washington,” Emery said. “I think the first year he was still rehabbing from the injury, still wasn’t completely right.
“This past year, he had some limited participation. I think he had a little bit of a penalty that caused him a little distress and it just didn’t work out for him.
“He was looking for a new home and we were glad that he wanted to come to the Bears.
“Competition is important — and we think he’s going to provide good competition. As I told both himself and (new wideout) Domenik (Hixon), ‘Hey, best man wins the job. Come in here and earn it.’
“And they’re both excited about the process to do so.”
• Lamar Houston — signed from the Raiders this offseason — could play three technique as well as defensive end.
“Wherever that is, wherever his talent lands him, wherever our coaches feel he is best suited,” Emery said. “Again, I’m not trying to be cute about it. We’ve got a lot of OTAs we haven’t entered yet, and we have a lot of camp in front of us, preseason games, (before) we make all these determinations.”
• Shea McClellin “looks like an extra in a Dolph Lundgren movie” after losing weight. The new linebacker’s new body won’t necessary alter the team’s draft plans because “we have always thought Shea was part of the mix.”
“Nobody is going to be given a job,” Emery said. “it’s a full-on mix.”
That carries over to second-year linebacker Jon Bostic, who will play the middle and strong-side during OTAs.
“What they all need to learn is the system and how to line up others and line up themselves and how they fit against particular plays, whether inside or outside,” he said. “But Jon will work back and forth.”
• Jeremiah Ratliff will play can play “three technique or nose tackle,” depending on the Bears’ needs.
“I think he’s very interchangeable,” Emery said. “It will depend on what the best grouping of players is.
“Jeremiah has come in in great shape. He’s got a great attitude. Very excited to see him get on the field and compete.”