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Will Steltz challenge for starting job?

Posted Aug 14, 2012

Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of email questions from fans on ChicagoBears.com.

Is there any chance that Craig Steltz gets some first-team reps? He seems to be having a great camp.

From Josiah J. on Twitter

I’ve been wondering the same thing. Few Bears players are performing as well as Craig Steltz in training camp. It seems like he’s been making plays on the ball in every practice. I do know that the Bears are very high on him and consider him an intelligent and instinctive player who’s like a coach on the field. Steltz has been getting some first-team reps at strong safety in practice, and I asked defensive backs coach Jon Hoke Tuesday about whether Steltz is pushing for Major Wright’s starting job. Here’s what Hoke told me: “Craig’s always involved in the mix. He’s a guy who’s always going to be in the hunt because he’s so consistent. Day-in and day-out he does his job. He’s got very good instincts for the position. You see him getting better every year. He’s a smart football player.”

Why aren’t the Bears using Gabe Carimi at left tackle?

From Ky M. on Twitter

With J’Marcus Webb failing to perform up to expectations in the preseason opener, the situation at left tackle still needs to be resolved. But it doesn’t appear that Gabe Carimi will be considered. The Bears consider the 6-7, 316-pounder a prototype right tackle because of his ability to be such a powerful run blocker. That’s not to say Carimi couldn’t play left tackle; the Bears just think he’s a better fit on the right side. If Webb doesn’t play better Saturday night against the Redskins, it appears that there will be an opportunity for Chris Williams to supplant Webb as the starter.

Does Chris Summers have a chance to make the team? He has impressive size and looks like he can go up for the ball.

From Ramon I. on Twitter

Undrafted rookie receiver Chris Summers did show the ability to go up and catch the ball in the preseason opener when he produced the Bears’ longest play from scrimmage by making a leaping 28-yard reception. But the Bears are very deep at receiver with Brandon Marshall, Devin Hester, Alshon Jeffery, Earl Bennett, Eric Weems, Rashied Davis and Dane Sanzenbacher all seemingly ahead of Summers. So it appears that he faces very long odds to make the 53-man roster. Given how the Bears revamped the position during the offseason, this isn’t the best year to be an undrafted rookie receiver.

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