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Bears sticking with youngsters

Published on NewsOK Modified: August 19, 2013 at 5:44 pm •  Published: August 19, 2013
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LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) — The raw right side of Chicago's offensive line will get another chance Friday night to gain experience against first-string defenders.

Without yet officially anointing rookie right guard Kyle Long and rookie right tackle Jordan Mills the opening day starters, Bears coach Marc Trestman on Monday said the two will get to follow their starts last week against San Diego by starting at Oakland in the third preseason game. Starters for Week 3 of the preseason usually start on opening day.

"The right side of the line, we'll keep it the same this week," Trestman said. "There were enough good things that happened (against San Diego) that we feel like we want to give them another opportunity to go out and play a little bit more against the first group and see what they can do."

Jay Cutler was sacked twice on the team's first series against the Chargers, but neither sack came from players lined up against the rookies.

"They were athletic, they were physical," Trestman said of Long and Mills. "Jordan got to play against (Dwight) Freeney for a couple snaps and learned a lot in those couple snaps.

"Just overall, there was an upside in assignments, physicality and athleticism. We're not ready to pass judgment yet, overall. We're just going to let this thing play itself out."

Long had been battling second-year guard/tackle James Brown for the starting spot, while Mills took J'Marcus Webb's spot last week after Webb allowed a sack in the preseason opener with Carolina.

A Chicago Tribune report said the Bears negotiated a pay cut for Webb from $1.323 million to $630,000, indicating they may think of him more as a backup now.

Another rookie who appears to be prepping for an opening day start is middle linebacker Jonathan Bostic. Starter D.J. Williams has been out since the first week of practice with a right calf injury, and Trestman said Bostic will go again this week.

Trestman also indicated he's expecting to get Williams back at practice "... in the next 12-14 days or better."

If that holds true, Bostic should be the opening day starter.

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