There's an old football-ism, folly or not, that goes like this: You can't lose your starting job to an injury. And as far as Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs is concerned, you certainly can't lose your job to a rookie.
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When asked about the performance of rookie linebacker Jon Bostic, who started at middle linebacker in all four preseason games in place of injured D.J. Williams, Briggs tried to set the record straight on the hierarchy of the position:
"Well, let's clarify this," Briggs said. "When we opened camp, D.J. Williams was our starting middle linebacker. James Anderson was our starting [strongside linebacker] and Lance Briggs was our starting [weakside linebacker]. D.J. Williams got injured, which in turn gave an opportunity for Jon Bostic to not only showcase his skills, but to learn. He got a chance to run with the ones and now D.J. Williams is back from injury and D.J. Williams is our starting [middle linebacker]."
So there you have it. Or maybe not. Head coach Marc Trestman, who reportedly has power to, you know, change lineups and such, said he hasn't decided which linebacker will start in the Bears' base defense yet.
It's an interesting situation because either choice isn't just seen as one of 11 defensive starters. Either Williams or Bostic — symbolically, anyway — will be stepping in for retired Brian Urlacher. (And we'll go ahead and assume that, as newcomers to the team, neither player will be faking injuries.)
Williams hasn't played a snap in the preseason. Bostic has played the majority, and mostly done so well. This decision could be an interesting one both for Bears fans and for the players in the locker room. Trestman and Co. don't want to undermine the veterans, but they also want to make the best choice.