A trade request and a strip-sack from Trevis Gipson — plus a Tyrique Stevenson INT: News from the Chicago Bears’ preseason finale

With a report swirling that he had requested a trade, Chicago Bears defensive end Trevis Gipson skipped out on talking with reporters after Saturday’s 24-21 preseason loss to the Buffalo Bills at Soldier Field. Not long after kickoff, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler indicated that Gipson had asked for permission to seek a trade as teams across the league work to set their initial 53-man rosters by 3 p.m. Tuesday.

Then in Saturday’s game, Gipson delivered his latest splash play, a second-quarter strip-sack of Bills quarterback Kyle Allen that resulted in a takeaway. But Gipson wasn’t around to talk about that play or to detail what he might be seeking as his career comes to a crossroad.

Bears coach Matt Eberflus wouldn’t say much, either, when pressed on the matter after the game.

“I’m not really going to comment on that because I don’t know much,” Eberflus said. “I can just say this: Trevis is an outstanding young man. And he works his tail off.”

Gipson’s grip on a job with the Bears has seemed tenuous for the last month. He has been listed in the fourth column of the defensive depth chart behind Yannick Ngakoue, DeMarcus Walker, Dominique Robinson, Terrell Lewis, Rasheem Green and D’Anthony Jones at defensive end.

Bears general manager Ryan Poles has a lot to sift through as he sets his roster before Tuesday’s deadline. And it seems unlikely he would be able to get much if anything back in a trade for Gipson, who is coming off a disappointing 2022 season in which he had only three sacks.

As teams around the NFL assess the league landscape, Gipson is likely on a waiver-wire watch list for some GMs. His reported discontent with where he stands with the Bears could factor into Poles’ decision-making process.

Still, Gipson has shown flashes that he still can be a dangerous pass rusher. In 2021, he had seven sacks and forced five fumbles, and he showed off more of that ball production Saturday when he beat Bills right tackle Alec Anderson around the edge and clubbed the football out of Allen’s right hand. Linebacker Noah Sewell recovered, setting the Bears up with possession at the Bills 26-yard line.

Gipson, who was a fifth-round pick in 2020, finished this preseason with two sacks, four quarterback hits and nine tackles. Now he’ll await to see what’s next.

Injury toll

Seven Bears starters missed Saturday’s preseason finale because of injuries, a list that included safeties Eddie Jackson and Jaquan Brisker, defensive end DeMarcus Walker, receiver Chase Claypool, right tackle Darnell Wright and guards Teven Jenkins and Nate Davis. Making matters worse, rookie linebacker Noah Sewell and center Doug Kramer left Saturday’s game with what appeared to be significant injuries.

Kramer started on the line with Lucas Patrick still out and Cody Whitehair shifting to left guard with a hand injury. But Kramer suffered a right hand injury in the first half and left Soldier Field with a protective cast on the hand.

“We’ll see where it goes,” Eberflus said. “But it looks positive.”

Sewell, meanwhile, was injured on the first play of the fourth quarter and had difficulty putting weight on his left leg as he was helped back to the Bears bench.

Jenkins, who is expected to be out well into the regular season, left the Bears locker room Saturday walking gingerly with a protective boot on his right foot.

The Bears first-unit offense worked with an offensive line of Braxton Jones, Whitehair, Kramer, Ja’Tyre Carter and Larry Borom to open the game. After Kramer was injured, Dieter Eiselen replaced him at center, making him the fourth player quarterback Justin Fields has taken snaps from since training camp began.

Said Fields: “All of them are similar in terms of how they snap the ball under center. So it’s not too bad.”

Pick to click

Rookie cornerback Tyrique Stevenson joked Thursday that one of his biggest goals for the preseason finale was to show “that I can actually catch” after he failed to secure an end-zone interception in the Bears’ Aug. 19 preseason loss to the Indianapolis Colts. Stevenson made good on that aspiration in the first quarter Saturday when he broke on an Allen pass to Gabe Davis and made a nifty interception along the Bills sideline. Stevenson said he identified Davis’ route by his release and made an instinctual break on the pass, snatching it and managing to get both feet down inbounds.

“I didn’t realize I had both feet down,” he said. “I didn’t think I had it. I just knew I caught it.”

Still, it wasn’t all promising for the second-round pick out of Miami. Stevenson was beat for a 29-yard Allen touchdown pass to Quintin Morris two possessions after his pick. He also was called for two holding penalties, bringing his preseason flag total to four.

The holding infractions, he said, were a matter of him becoming more understanding of how such calls will be made at the NFL level versus college.

“Down the field, I can’t touch and have my hands on them,” Stevenson said. “It’s just making sure I play a cleaner game with my feet so I don’t get a penalty that hurts the team. … I feel like I’m a lot stronger than (these receivers) so if I adjust their route a little bit or it looks like I did a little too much and they call it.”