The Chicago Bears are running very thin at the wide receiver position. With injuries running wild during the preseason, the team is getting hit hard as their biggest playmakers continue to go down. As Jay Cutler enters a critical season for his career and future with the franchise, he needs all of the help he can get and right now he is dealing with second and third string options. However, the quarterback says it is not ready to hit the panic button just yet.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, the injury list for the Bears continues to get longer. Eddie Royal missed his second straight practice with a hip injury. Head coach John Fox opted not to elaborate on the exact issue. Marquess Wilson is dealing with a hamstring strain. Alshon Jeffery has a calf injury, but is expected to return for the first game of the season. Kevin White is likely out for the year following surgery on a shin injury. According to Cutler, it is simply next-man up even if there are not many men left.
"I think, right now, we've got so many guys in and out of the huddle, I'm just trying to concentrate on my job," Cutler said, via the Sun Times. "And we'll see how it all unfolds with 'Bush' and some of these other guys. Everyone's working. We're still kind of in training camp mode. We'll start fine-tuning things as we go."
The question for the Bears is when is it time to consider adding a body to the roster? According to the Chicago Tribune, the idea of adding Wes Welker is not going to happen. The former Denver Broncos receiver has been sitting on the free agent market, but is not getting any looks despite several teams suffering season-ending injuries at the position. If anything, the Bears could capitalize on the first round of roster cuts which might feature some big names becoming available.
According to Bleacher Report's Jason Cole, teams are going to show a lot of interest in players like James Jones, Hakeem Nicks and Justin Hunter if they were to get cut. With players coming back from injuries, the New York Giants might no longer see the need for Jones. Nicks and Hunter are on the edge of a crowded roster group in Tennessee. The Bears could sign one of them to a cheap deal and move forward.
For now, Martellus Bennett and Matt Forte become critical to the offense. Cutler made it clear after Bennett's comments that he and the tight end have no problems with each other. Forte continues as the workhorse of the ground game as he fights for a new contract.