People will say that it’s never wise to take note of roster decisions during Organized Team Activities. Those people should remember last year when the Chicago Bears elevated Braxton Jones to the starting left tackle spot. It proved to be a sign of things to come. So whenever this coaching staff makes a notable tweak to the depth chart, it is wise to least take notice. Once again, it took place on the offensive line, but this time at the right guard spot. That might confuse some people.
Expectations are that Nate Davis will be the starter there after signing his free agent deal with the Bears. That is true. However, Davis wasn’t present at practice on Tuesday. These early OTAs are voluntary, and it appears he decided to conduct his business away from the team. One person is taking advantage of that. According to Josh Schrock of NBC Sports Chicago, former 7th round pick Ja’Tyre Carter was the primary choice to fill the right guard spot with him out. This over options like Lucas Patric, Dieter Eiselen, and Alex Leatherwood.
“With Davis absent, Ja’Tyre Carter got the right guard snaps with the first team. Lucas Patrick also rotated in while Teven Jenkins and Cody Whitehair manned left guard and center, respectively.”
The Chicago Bears must like Carter’s progress.
It shouldn’t be a surprise. Despite his draft status, there were always signs that the Southern alum had the ability. He flashed it at the Senior Bowl last year. Training camp and the preseason followed. In 22 pass protection snaps, he allowed only one pressure on the quarterback. Then the Bears gave him some valuable reps in the season finale against Minnesota, where he didn’t allow a single pressure in 19 passing snaps. Over the past few months, he has worked with former Bears legend Olin Kreutz on improving his technique and body development.
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By the sound of it, he’s made a strong impression on the coaching staff. They appear to have him slotted as the early favorite for the swing guard. That may not be a huge story for Hollywood scriptwriters, but it’s great news for the Chicago Bears. Developing a late round pick into a reliable backup is how good teams are built. Most didn’t expect Carter to even survive on the roster. Now he is seemingly taking the next step forward. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds in training camp.