The Chicago Bears have finalized their 53-man roster on Saturday afternoon, and while there were a few veterans who were cut loose, there weren't a ton of surprises.
Perhaps one of the biggest shocks was that the Bears ended up deciding to keep four running backs, as both Shaun Draughn and Senorise Perry made the final roster. Ka'Deem Carey was considered a lock, but now the Bears will have an interesting decision to make as to who will backup Matt Forte this season.
The Bears also decided to keep six wide receivers, with Santonio Holmes, Josh Morgan, and Micheal Spurlock all making the final cut. Marquess Wilson made the team, but it's unclear at this point whether he will be placed on injury reserve with a designation to return. That decision should come on Sunday or Monday.
Two more big names joined Jordan Lynch on the proverbial streets on Saturday, as offensive lineman Eben Britton and wide receiver/kick returner Chris Williams were both released by the team. Britton missed a good chunk of time with a hamstring injury, and with the Bears likely only keeping eight offensive linemen, he will be on their short list if there’s another injury.
As for Williams, he also missed a lot of time with a hamstring injury, and with the team only keeping six wide receivers, there wasn’t going to be room for him if he didn’t dazzle in the return game Thursday against the Cleveland Browns, and frankly he didn’t.
That move likely means that Micheal Spurlock will get a shot to return kicks when the season starts, with Holmes also getting some work in that area.
In the afternoon, the Bears made an interesting decision regarding their secondary, as the team decided to cut cornerback Kelvin Hayden:
Hayden's release likely means that Sherrick McManis will be the back-up cornerback for Kyle Fuller and Tim Jennings, and Demontre Hurst and Al Louis-Jean both could benefit from that particular roster move as well.
The Bears also decided to cut cornerback C.J. Wilson, who led the team in interceptions during the preseason.
Numerous other players were also cut by the Bears early in the day, with wide receiver Dale Moss, center Taylor Boggs, offensive linemen Ryan Groy and Austen Lane, defensive back Marcus Trice, linebacker DeDe Lattimore, and defensive tackle Lee Pegues also being sent away. According to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune, Boggs and Lattimore could end up being added to the practice squad if they clear waivers.
Defensive tackle Brandon Dunn and cornerback Al Louis-Jean were among the final players released by the Bears. Safety M.D. Jennings was also let go with an injury settlement because of ongoing shoulder issues.
Later in the afternoon, linebacker Jerry Franklin was also cut by the team, meaning that undrafted rookie Christian Jones is a virtual lock for the roster. Wide receiver Josh Bellamy was also cut by the Bears, but according to several reports he could end up making the practice squad if he clears waivers.