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Why do Bears always face Browns in finale?

Posted Apr 9, 2013

Larry discusses why the Bears always close the preseason against the Browns, the likelihood of the Bears trading up in the draft and who holds Bears records for longevity.

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.

Why do the Bears always play the Cleveland Browns the fourth week of the NFL preseason?

John T.
Rockford, Illinois

The NFL schedules the first three weeks of the preseason, but all individual teams are responsible for creating their match-ups for the finale. The Bears and Browns agreed to a series, alternating between the two cities on a yearly basis. It's a good partnership because it's a short trip and the non-conference foes only play each other in the regular season once every four years. This season the Bears will host the Browns in the preseason finale and visit Cleveland during the regular season.

Several reports indicate that the Raiders would like to trade down from their third position in the draft. Do you think the Bears would trade up in the draft to take the best offensive lineman?

Tom
Madison, Wisconsin

I don't see that happening for two reasons. First, Bears general manager Phil Emery has told reporters that he will explore the possibility of trading down from No. 20 to gain additional draft picks. The Bears have only five picks at this point, having dealt selections in the third round (to the Dolphins for receiver Brandon Marshall) and seventh round (to the Buccaneers for defensive tackle Brian Price). Secondly, most draft analysts agree that while this draft has a lot of depth, there aren't as many game-changing difference-makers at the top of the draft as there are most years.

I just saw that Jason Hanson retired from the Lions after 21 seasons, and I wondered who owns the Bears records for most seasons, most games and consecutive games?

Eric W.
Pinckney, Michigan

Long-snapper Patrick Mannelly owns the Bears records for most seasons (15) and games (231) in team history. With Jason Hanson retiring, Mannelly becomes the NFL's longest-tenured player with one team, having joined the Bears in 1998 as a sixth-round draft pick. (Cornerback Ronde Barber joined the Buccaneers in 1997, but he's currently a free agent.) Walter Payton holds the Bears record for starts with 184, while Steve McMichael owns the mark for consecutive games with 191.

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