Braunecker is an undrafted free agent out of Harvard who originally joined the Bears following the 2016 NFL Draft. While at Harvard, Braunecker registered 68 receptions for 1,168 (17.2 avg) and 10 touchdowns in 25 games over four seasons (2012-15). Following his senior season, he was selected first team All-America (AP, Walter Camp and STATS) and was chosen as the 2015 CFPA Tight End Award recipient. Braunecker was waived by Chicago prior to the start of the regular season and signed to the club's practice squad on September 4th.
2015: Invited to NFL Combine. Chosen to the AP FCS All-America first team. Tabbed to the Walter Camp FCS All-America team. Selected to the STATS FCS All-America first team. Earned a spot on the AFCA FCS Coaches' All-America team. Honored on the College Sports Madness All-America first team. Selected to College Sporting News Fabulous Fifty FCS All-America team. Member of InstantScouting FCS All-America team. Chosen as the 2015 CFPA Tight End Award recipient. Named to All-Ivy League first team. Tabbed to the ECAC FCS All-Star first team. Invited to NFLPA Collegiate Bowl. Led Harvard with 48 receptions for 850 yards and eight TDs on the season. His 850 receiving yards ranked sixth-most for a single-season in school history. His eight TD catches is tied for second-most for a season in program history. Was fourth in the Ivy League with 85.0 receving yards per game. Had a 19-yard TD grab and finished with three catches for 65 yards at Rhode Island. Grabbed two catches for 26 yards and a TD vs. Brown. Made one catch for 23 yards vs. Georgetown. Caught three passes for 64 yards and a TD at Cornell. Had six grabs for 123 yards and a TD at Lafayette. Named COOP Athlete of the Week Oct. 20. Had seven grabs for 133 yards and a TD vs. Princeton. Made five catches for 44 yards vs. Dartmouth. Caught seven balls for 130 yards and a TD at Columbia. Grabbed eight passes for a career-high 134 yards vs. Penn. Had six catches for 88 yards and two TDs at Yale.
2014: Finished the season with 11 catches for 227 yards and a TD. Grabbed three balls for 45 receiving yards against Holy Cross. Made three receptions for 53 yards at Georgetown. Finished with two catches for 51 yards vs. Cornell. Grabbed three bals for 78 yards and a TD vs. Lafayette.
2013:Amassed nine receptions for 91 yards and a TD on the year. Made a 10-yard TD catch and finished with two grabs for 12 yards at San Diego. Caught a pass for 13 yards at Cornell. Had one grab for six yards against Dartmouth. Made two receptions for 31 yards against Penn.
Three-year starter and team captain as a senior. Honorable mention all-state as a senior while also earning all-conference, all-Southwestern Indiana, team MVP, and all-Southwestern Indiana MVP honors. Had 51 career receptions for 1,254 yards (24.1 ypc) with 16 touchdowns for an average of 24.1 yards per catch. Also had 29 kickoff returns for 1,005 yards (34.6 ypr). Defensively, he had 101 tackles and seven interceptions. Also named honorable mention all-state as a junior.
The Bears on Saturday promoted rookie tight end Ben Braunecker from the practice squad to the active roster and waived defensive lineman C.J. Wilson.
Second-year pro Jeremy Langford will be among the most intriguing players to watch on offense when the Bears begin training camp Wednesday in Bourbonnais.
After his breakout season last year, Zach Miller will head to training camp next week as the Bears' undisputed No. 1 tight end.
Bears undrafted tight end Ben Braunecker is featured in the third segment of "Meet the Rookies," a four-part series that chronicles the inspirational stories of the team's newest players.
Ben Braunecker was a molecular and cellular biology major at Harvard and hopes to one day become a doctor. But today he's focused on playing tight end for the Bears.
Tight end Ben Braunecker speaks with the media at Halas Hall.
Learn more about rookie tight end Ben Braunecker as he begins his NFL career on Meet the Rookies.
A preview of our four part series, 'Meet the Rookies' brought to you by Chicago Tribune digitalPLUS.