Sometimes life is no kind of fun. Sometimes you do everything right and still end up with the short straw. The preseason in the National Football League is a breeding ground for that unfortunate reality. As is par for the course, Preseason 2012 was no different, especially around Chicago Bears camp. While these players ultimately would not be weekly game-changers, they are players that had strong preseasons and yet found themselves getting the ax as the roster was trimmed.
Josh McCown - QuarterbackWhile I'll be the first to admit having Josh McCown's name on the depth chart doesn't exactly instill faith and confidence, the man played a pretty solid preseason --not to mention an entirely respectful final two games of last regular season when Caleb Hanie proved to be entirely worthless previously. In the final preseason game against the Cleveland Browns, McCown went 20 of 29 for 157 yards, two touchdowns, one interception, and a 90.7 quarterback rating. The lamest part for McCown is that he wasn't beat out by anyone. The Bears just decided to break camp with only two quarterbacks.
Armando Allen - Running BackAllen's ultimate fate was another semi-tragedy. Essentially an unknown contributor coming into camp, Allen made the Bears really consider keeping him around for the season. Lorenzo Booker just barely edged him out for the last running back slot. I thought after his performance against the Browns --16 carries for 83 yards, five receptions for 51 yards, one touchdown--Allen was going to get the edge. But, as usual, I was wrong. Booker played well too, but I thought Allen did enough, especially after Booker left with a head injury. I guess not.
While McCown and Allen were cut despite good performances, wide receiver Dane Sanzenbacher and punter Ryan Quigley both made the final cut and deservedly so. Quigley has stepped in extremely well since Adam Podlesh went down with an injury, and, for the second year in a row, Sanzenbacher has just played too well to ignore. I wanted to see Sanzenbacher get a second year with Jay Cutler and see how he develops. The only unfortunate angle is that Sanzenbacher will be buried behind a number of quality receivers.
Who would have thought that we could use "Chicago Bears" and "quality receivers" in the same sentence?
Brian is a lifelong Chicago Bears fan, having lived in Illinois his entire life and having followed the NFL throughout.