Bears Have Strength In Numbers At Receiver

The Bears have several intriguing receivers fighting for roster roles.

Chris Emma
August 13, 2019 - 3:24 pm
Categories: 

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (670 The Score) -- The intrigue surrounding undrafted rookie receiver Emanuel Hall had apparently run its course as the Bears took to the practice field Tuesday morning.

Listen to your team news NOW.

Hall was driving away from Halas Hall, having been waived by the Bears prior to practice. It was a somewhat surprising move, but coach Matt Nagy explained it was simply the product of depth at receiver.

"It’s just a lot of times it comes down to numbers," Nagy said. "He’s done a good job with us. We appreciate everything that he did, but that’s just a part of the business."

Related: Bears have first fight in practice

The strength at wide receiver has been apparent this preseason. Beyond the Bears' four roster locks at the position -- Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, Cordarrelle Patterson and Anthony Miller -- there's more fascination.

One of the standouts at receiver has been second-year target Javon Wims, who drew praise from veteran cornerback Prince Amukamara even after the two were involved in a fight Tuesday morning. Wims threw multiple punches at Amukamara before the two were separated and made peace.

"He looks great out there," Amukamara said of Wims.

With Miller sidelined with a right ankle sprain, there are opportunities for receivers to make preseason impressions. Rookie Riley Ridley, a fourth-round pick, has returned from an early hamstring injury and shown Nagy his knowledge of the playbook.

Ridley was Georgia's leading receiver in 2018, a year after Wims led the Bulldogs in receptions. Now, they're both battling for places in the Bears' offense.

"We got a lot of guys that can do a lot of different things," Ridley said. "It's very competitive. Being a young guy, you want to make a mark. I just keep my head down and keep working."

The Bears have also received a strong show in training camp from 26-year-old Marvin Hall, who's entering his third year in the league. Hall was rarely utilized during his two seasons in Atlanta, recording just 12 receptions for 209 yards and two scores, but he has shown he can handle whatever Nagy wants him to do.

"He's really smooth as a route runner," Nagy said. "Obviously fast. He has natural hands. He's really taken everything that we do with this offense. It hasn't been too much a challenge for him. Some of the guys, they can hiccup on it a little bit, but he's done really well."

Hall is trying to keep his focus simple.

"I do what Marvin Hall can do," he said. "If it's good enough, it's good enough. If it's not, we're back to the drawing board."

The impending roster decisions at receiver will be complicated, given that the Bears have to sort out their depth chart at running back and tight end too. The Bears are likely to keep six or seven receivers, but each of the team's reserve skill players is essentially competing against one another.

A battle to catch on with this roster is well underway, and the Bears are sorting out their numbers at receiver.

Chris Emma covers the Bears, Chicago’s sports scene and more for 670TheScore.com. Follow him on Twitter @CEmma670.