Ben Braunecker

Bears Place TE Zach Miller On IR

As expected, the Bears are placing tight end Zach Miller on injured reserve. This was the only possible outcome after he had major surgery on his dislocated knee. To take his place on the roster, fellow tight end Ben Braunecker has promoted from the practice squad. Taking Braunecker’s place on the taxi squad will be tight end Colin Thompson"<strong

Initially, there was concern that Miller could lose his leg in surgery. However, the Bears announced last week that Miller’s operation was “successful,” so he is hopefully out of the woods in that regard. In a statement released on Twitter on Tuesday, Miller said that he has been “down before” but he “will do whatever it takes to get back up.”

In 2016, Miller caught a career-high 47 passes and 486 yards with four touchdowns. At the time of his injury, he was on pace for similar numbers with 20 receptions for 236 yards and two scores.

The Bears are expected to move forward with Dion Sims and second-round pick Adam Shaheen as their top TEs with Daniel Brown in support. They’ll try to improve on their 3-5 record on Sunday when they face the rival Packers in Chicago.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/5/17

Today’s practice squad transactions:

Atlanta Falcons

Baltimore Ravens

  • Signed: CB Tony McRae, C Matt Skura

Buffalo Bills

  • Signed: LB Eric Lee
  • Released: S B.T. Sanders, CB Marcus Sayles

Carolina Panthers

  • Signed: FB Alex Armah

Chicago Bears

Cleveland Browns

Dallas Cowboys

Houston Texans

  • Signed: LB LaTroy Lewis

Indianapolis Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Signed: CB Raysean Pringle

Kansas City Chiefs

Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Rams

  • Signed: TE Johnny Mundt, CB Kevin Peterson
  • Released: OL Michael Dunn, DL Louis Trinca-Pasat

New England Patriots

New York Giants

New York Jets

San Francisco 49ers

Tennessee Titans

  • Signed: CB Kenneth Durden

Sunday NFL Transactions: NFC North

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC North teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Bears, Lions, Packers, and Vikings are noted below.

Additionally, as of 12:00pm CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

Here are Sunday’s NFC North transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day:

Chicago Bears

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Minnesota Vikings

Bears Cut C.J. Wilson, Sign Ben Braunecker

Since his four-year stay in Green Bay — one that included a rookie-year Super Bowl ring — C.J. Wilson has not had much luck sticking with teams. This pattern persisted on the eve of the Bears’ Week 4 contest, when they cut Wilson and promoted rookie tight end Ben Braunecker from their practice squad, Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times reports (on Twitter).

No tight ends reside on Chicago’s injury report in advance of Sunday’s Bears-Lions game, but prior to Braunecker’s promotion, the team only had two on its roster — Zach Miller and Logan Paulsen. The UDFA’s been with the team since signing after the draft.

Wilson, however, spent the offseason with multiple teams, the Bears and Saints after a lengthy stay in free agency. This came after he’d suited up for the Raiders and Lions the past two seasons. The Packers did not opt to bring the defensive end back after his rookie contract expired in 2014.

The 29-year-old defender will head to waivers after bypassing that step due to the Saints cutting him before the season. The Raiders waived Wilson in November, and after he caught on with the Lions, Detroit released him in February.

Wilson has not played in a game this season after suiting up for 12 last year. He has 6.5 career sacks in 78 career games (19 starts).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Sunday NFL Transactions: NFC North

Listed below are the Sunday roster moves for the four NFC North teams. Following the 53-man roster cutdown deadline yesterday, many teams will make slight tweaks to their rosters, claiming players off waivers or signing guys who clear waivers. Those transactions for the Bears, Lions, Packers, and Vikings are noted below.

Additionally, as of 12:00pm CT today, teams can begin constructing their 10-man practice squads. You can check out our glossary entry on practice squads to brush up on those changes, as well as all the other guidelines that govern the 10-man units, whose players practice with the team but aren’t eligible to suit up on Sundays.

Here are Sunday’s NFC North transactions, which will continue to be updated throughout the day. All links go to Twitter unless otherwise noted:

Chicago Bears

Detroit Lions

Green Bay Packers

Minnesota Vikings

Bears’ Roster At 53

The Bears have officially reduced their roster to 53 players, and in doing so, placed LB Pernell McPhee and WR Marquess Wilson on PUP. As such, each player will be forced to miss at leas the first six games of the season.

Cut:

Waived/Injured:

PUP:

  • LB Pernell McPhee
  • WR Marquess Wilson

Braverman was the club’s seventh-round pick this year after posting a whopping 109 receptions for Western Michigan in 2015.

Moeaki has bounced around a bit since leaving the Chiefs in 2012. The 29-year-old played in 11 games for the Falcons last season, but he only hauled in three catches for 58 yards. Following a 2012 campaign where he caught 33 passes for 453 yards and a score, Moeaki has only compiled 11 catches for 192 yards over the past three seasons.

NFC Notes: Panthers, Vikings, Saints, Falcons

Panthers coach Ron Rivera admits that Fletcher Cox‘s massive new deal with the Eagles doesn’t help the Panthers’ cause in trying to lock up Kawann Short, Bill Voth of Black and Blue Review writes.

This is the hard part right now is what’s going on in the league,” Rivera said. “I think some of these contracts are unbelievable as far as what I’m seeing and hearing.”

Word is that the Panthers may not be willing to go above $15MM/year for their standout defensive tackle. Cox, meanwhile, will average nearly $17.2MM per season on his new deal with a great deal in the way of guarantees early on in the pact.

Here’s more from the NFC:

  • The Vikings can’t seem to find the right counterpart for Harrison Smith at safety, writes Ben Goessling of ESPN.com, who lists Michael Griffin, Andrew Sendejo, Anthony Harris, Antone Exum, and Jayron Kearse as contenders for the job. Right now, there’s no word as to whether the Vikings could look out-of-house to help bolster the group. Griffin, 31, is the most experienced of the bunch by far, and given that he excels in coverage, he might be the favorite to line up opposite Smith. “One thing I try not to do, especially in OTAs where we’re not in pads, is try to jump to some kind of conclusion of who should be the starter,” said head coach Mike Zimmer of the competition. “I’ll kind of let that play out in camp.”
  • Veteran defensive end Darryl Tapp tried out for the Saints on Tuesday, as Evan Woodbery of The Times Picayune tweets.
  • The Falcons are trying out wide receiver Donatella Luckett, according to Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
  • UDFA tight end Ben Braunecker has a real good shot to make the Bears‘ roster, Adam Caplan of ESPN.com tweets. Braunecker was seen working with Chicago’s second-team offense during OTAs.
  • The Bears are trying out tight end Ryan Taylor and defensive lineman Marquise Jackson, according to Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune (Twitter link).

Bears Add Eight UDFAs

The Bears have submitted eight undrafted free agent signings to the NFL office, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. Here’s the list:

  • TE Ben Braunecker (Harvard)
  • OL Dan Buchholz (Duquesne)
  • CB Taveze Calhoun (Mississippi State)
  • LB Don Cherry (Villanova)
  • LB Roy Robertson-Harris (UTEP)
  • WR/KR Derek Keaton (Georgia Southern) [$3k signing bonus, Biggs tweets]
  • OL John Kling (Buffalo)
  • TE Joe Sommers (Wisconsin-Oshkosh) [$7,521 signing bonus, tweets Biggs]