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Iwuh Are You?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Brian Iwuh had never played in the box when he was signed as an undrafted rookie free agent by the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2006. Instead at Colorado he was a roving safety.

    So if ever there was a situation for Jacksonville Head Coach Jack Del Rio to mold a player, it was with Brian Iwuh.

    "He was a good coach who really knew what he was talking about and he put a lot of pressure on the linebackers" Iwuh said Thursday at Halas Hall.   "He put a lot of emphasis on the linebackers making all the plays on the field, so it was a good thing playing for him, I really learned a lot."

    The Jaguars one gap system played more with the mentality of a two gap system - read & react. So when Iwuh was signed by the Bears in May just before training camp he had a lot to learn. "The defense is not really similar. I believe this defense fits me a little better because its more downhill and single gap" Iwuh explained while standing in front of his locker.

    The Bears and Iwuh are preparing to see more of #52 at weakside linebacker. Lance Briggs missed Bears practices Wednesday and Thursday nursing an ankle sprain.

    "Lance's ankle is a little bit of a concern," head coach Lovie Smith said Thursday. "But going on his history he usually comes though at the end of the week."

    Still Iwuh will be prepared, taking first team reps on defense in practice. "I'm not Lance, so I'm just going to play within my capabilities, not try to do anything that's outside the defense."

    That's what has caught Bears' coaches and players eye already about Iwuh. "He's a good player" Brian Urlacher said. "He knows the defense, know the concepts of the defense really well... I definitely trust him."

    Trust has been a big part of the success of the Bears 6th ranked defense this year. Nothing fancy, just trusting each other to do their job.

    "I'm still getting used to being a true linebacker" Iwuh explained, "As long as I'm willing to learn I think I'll be able to develop in this defense."

    Bears coaches think so too.