LAKE FOREST – While it’s clear how the Bears feel about the fourth preseason game, their opponent may pull out a few more stops.
Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski told Cleveland.com that he is considering playing his starters in Thursday night’s preseason finale at Soldier Field.
“We’re going to approach this next game that those guys are going to play. And then I’ll make that determination later in the week as it goes on,” Chudzinski said.
The Browns lost, 27-6, in their third preseason game against the Colts. Their offense never got to the red zone.
The Bears are starting Jordan Palmer at quarterback, who will be followed by Trent Edwards. Josh McCown and Jay Cutler are taking the night off, along with most of the starters, head coach Marc Trestman confirmed.
“I wouldn’t say all, but it’ll be close to all of the starters,” he said about those resting on Thursday. “There’s always going to be things that happen later in the week because of injuries and things like that that we may have to play some guys, but our hope is most if not all will be held out of the game.”
With the Browns potentially playing some of their first-teamers, that could affect the Bears’ staff’s evaluation of its fringe roster players, but Trestman said that it could actually be beneficial.
“I think you can turn it into a positive,” he said about the possibility of facing Browns starters. “It gives them an opportunity to play against some of the better players and see how they match up competition wise and it creates more value for them competitively speaking and throughout the league, so I don’t think it’s a bad thing.”
Injury update: Trestman said that Henry Melton has begun running as he continues to recover from a concussion. Earl Bennett is still day-to-day. D.J. Williams (calf) also remains day-to-day, but was seen stretching in the portion of practice open to the media. Harvey Unga, Patrick Mannelly and Cheta Ozougwu all returned to practice, while Jonathan Scott, Corvey Irvin, J.T. Thomas and Zack Bowman sat out Monday.
Fendi’s struggles: Tight end Fendi Onobun had two more drops in Friday night’s preseason game and is clearly on the roster bubble, but Trestman said his play in games is not indicative of his full preseason. “Fendi Onobun has had a very good camp and has been uncharacteristically inconsistent in the games,” Trestman said, adding, “We’re all pulling for him both in the locker room and on the field that he will continue to progress and get through this kind of little batting slump that he has been during the games that we really haven’t seen during practice.”