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Who will Bears start at middle linebacker?

Posted Sep 6, 2013

Larry discusses how the Bears will determine their starting middle linebacker, how the base defense compares to last year's and if the Bears are interested in Tim Tebow.

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.

When determining who will start at middle linebacker, what matters most, experience (D.J. Williams) or good preseason games (Jon Bostic)?

From Erik G. on Twitter

Really I think the only thing that matters is starting the player who gives the Bears the best chance to win. I'm sure the coaching staff has a good gauge on where D.J. Williams is with his conditioning after watching him practice all week and have done a thorough evaluation of how Jon Bostic performed in all aspects during the preseason. Coaches always say that players make the decision for them, and Bears coach Marc Trestman said this week that both Williams and Bostic could get reps in Sunday's season opener. If that's the case, I think it will be clearer to all of us after the game whether one of them outplayed the other and deserves the starting job.

How will the Bears' base defense compare to last year's cover-two?

From Wells on Twitter

I'm sure you've been hearing a lot of speculation, but the truth is that only Bears coaches and players know for sure exactly how this year's defense will be similar or different to last year's. You can't really base anything off the preseason because teams generally go to great lengths not to give away any secrets. What we do know is that new defensive coordinator Mel Tucker kept the same system and terminology in place from last year, and he places the same importance on generating takeaways as the previous coaching staff. So while the scheme will be somewhat similar, I'm sure that Tucker will add his own wrinkles-perhaps like the increased blitzing we saw during the preseason-as the season progresses. We'll just have to wait and see.

The Bears could use a good backup quarterback; what about Tim Tebow?

From Jacob R. on Twitter

The Bears have confidence in Josh McCown as their backup quarterback and have no plans to consider signing Tim Tebow. General manager Phil Emery made that clear during a Q-and-A session with fans on ChicagoBears.com this week, saying: "I had the fortunate experience to see Tim live in college in two games and several practices. Tim has a unique skill set. His intangibles are off the charts. Right now we have two quarterbacks and we're going to stick with where we're at with our roster. We have no future plans to consider Tim."

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