Rookies Long, Mills earn Trestman's praise
Offensive linemen Jordan Mills (67) and Kyle Long earned the praise of Bears coach Marc Trestman for their performance in practice Monday.
Brian Hill | Staff Photographer
BOURBONNAIS -- For the second straight day of practice, the starting offensive line featured rookie Kyle Long at right guard and rookie Jordan Mills at left tackle.
It was a trial by fire in what Bears coach Marc Trestman called one of the most intense practices of camp.
"I thought they did very well," Trestman said. "They made mistakes just like everybody made mistakes, and as I said to Kyle and Jordan, 'I'm not concerned about the mistakes; I'm more concerned about the next play after the mistakes,' and they recaptured their poise.
"They went back in there and they did a lot of good things against a really dynamic front. The guys were coming after it big-time. It looked like a game out there, it really did up front, and we got better because of it."
With starting defensive ends Julius Peppers and Corey Wootton back at full strength, intensity was ratcheted up, and the entire offensive line was tested -- much to Trestman's delight.
"If you love football, you had to love this practice," he said. "This was a vicious practice, a highly competitive practice. We're stressing our offense as much as they could ever be stressed with what they're seeing defensively; the fronts we're seeing, the blitzes we're seeing."
Big shoes to fill:
Brandon Hartson, who didn't join the team until Sunday, has just two more days in his first NFL camp to get in sync with the kicking units as he fills in for injured long-snapper Patrick Mannelly.
"I wouldn't say (we're) comfortable yet because (Monday) was the first day we've really seen him," said Bears special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis. "We haven't really had a chance to work with him very much. It looked like he was good in practice."
Mannelly has been the long-snapper for all but nine games over the past 15 years. When he was hurt early in Friday's preseason game at Carolina, starting linebacker James Anderson filled in and performed admirably on short notice.
"Pat's been such a pro and such a good one for so many years, it's hard to replace him," DeCamillis said. "It was great the other day what James Anderson did. (He) snapped the whole game, and nobody knew it in the stands, so that's great. It was a little scary at the start but they did a great job with him."
Sitting it out:
Running backs Armando Allen (knee) and Harvey Unga (ribs), linebacker D.J. Williams (calf), long-snapper Patrick Mannelly (ribs), defensive tackle Henry Melton (concussion), offensive tackle Jonathan Scott (knee) and wide receiver Earl Bennett (concussion) did not practice. ... The Bears signed running back Curtis Brinkley and cut wide receiver Marcus Rucker.
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