DJ Williams looked like he would be the heir to Brian Urlacher in Chicago when the Bears signed him in the offseason. But after the Bears first preseason game, rookie linebacker Jon Bostic could very well take over that starting middle linebacker position come week one of the regular season.
A second round pick out of the University of Florida, Bostic returned an interception of Cam Newton for a touchdown last Friday, opening some eyes to the talented rookie.
Head coach Marc Trestman was impressed.
“I was encouraged by his stamina. I don’t know how many plays he played, but he was on special teams, as well. It’s great to see the young guys have success and be able to identify with doing good things. He did that [Friday] night,” Trestman shared.
He also acknowledged that Bostic was very much in the competition for the starting job, but hadn’t quite earned it yet.
“We’re not ready to anoint him certainly. He’s in a competition. He’s going to play a lot of football.”
And while Bostic had a very good game, he knows there is still a long way to go before the final depth charts are set for week one.
“I’ve got to get a lot better before I can even think about being the starter and running out with some of these guys that have done all these great things around here. I’ve got a lot of stuff to learn,” Bostic said.
Lovie Smith and his linebacker-centric cover-2 defensive scheme is no longer the basis of Chicago’s defense, so neither Williams nor Bostic should be expected to produce at the level Urlacher has over the past decade.
That being said, the Bears are in win-now mode, which means that whoever can help the Bears more now will win the starting job.