Football is near. We are less than three weeks from the start of the season. Oklahoma’s final season in the Big 12 is on the horizon, and anticipation is building for the Sooners to take the field. Everyone wants to wipe the bad taste left by last season’s 6-7 performance.
With football back, it means the USA TODAY Sports Coaches Poll returns. Oklahoma came in at No. 19 to start the season.
With the poll out, we took the liberty of sharing five takeaways from the first iteration of the poll and what it could mean for this 2023 season.
Optimism for the Sooners
Coming in at 19 is probably the best spot possible for Oklahoma to start the season. It gives them the ability to rise and surprise people should they be as improved as many around the program believe they are. It also doesn’t overrate them too early, which may have been an issue for the team last year.
Big 12 is well represented
The Big 12 will look different this year, but some of the conference’s most recognizable names still remain as the cream of the crop. With Oklahoma and Texas departing for the SEC following the season, this year will be one for the history books.
LSU vs. FSU is must-watch TV
In the first must-watch TV matchup of the 2023 season. A top-10 matchup between LSU and Florida State is set for Labor Day weekend. They’ll tussle in the Sunday night slot before the NFL kicks off its season the following week.
Last year’s game was very good. Both teams improved through critical transfer additions. This could be a barn burner.
Both teams have national championship aspirations. A win for either could go a long way to propelling them to the College Football Playoff.
Tulane is the lone Group of Five to make the cut
Tulane stands out as the only Group of Five schools to cut. The Green Wave ended last year with an upset win over the USC Trojans in the Cotton Bowl Classic.
Will Texas A&M breakthrough?
There is quiet optimism that the Aggies can finally make a push. Texas A&M comes in at No. 25 in the initial poll. Stop us if you’ve heard this story before. However, that’s the reality.
Everyone’s been waiting for Texas A&M’s talented recruiting classes to pay off. Eventually, it just has to, or Jimbo Fisher may not be employed by Texas A&M next summer.
- The OklahomanHow Millwood WR Jaden Nickens is gearing up for commitment day with offers from OU, OSUHallie Hart, The OklahomanTue, Aug 8, 2023, 4:32 PM GMT+5:30·4 min read after revealing his top eight schools, Jaden Nickens is preparing for his commitment ceremony. The standout Millwood receiver will announce his college decision at 2:30 p.m. Saturday. He is choosing from Arkansas, North Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, UNLV, and the University of Texas at San Antonio. Also a dynamic basketball player, Nickens is a four-star football recruit ranked fourth in the state’s 2025 class, according to 247Sports. The recruiting service ranks him 12th nationally among wide receivers in his class. The Oklahoman caught up with Nickens during Millwood’s ninth annual Midnight Madness practice Monday at L.W. Good Stadium. Here’s what he had to say about his recruitment process, his recruiting class, and his chances of playing two sports at the next level:More: OU football commit Elijah Thomas knows Sooners will ‘be pretty solid’ with 2025 classMillwood’s Jaden Nickens catches a touchdown pass between Sequoyah Claremore defenders Dylan Burks and JT Keeler on Nov. 25 in Harrah. Q: You’ve had a busy summer with lots of college visits. How does it feel to be out here now for Midnight Madness? A: “It feels really good to have our first official open practice of the season. It’s been a really hard, grinding summer mentally and physically, so just getting better every day with my teammates and then just having fun throughout the summer better and working on my craft has been fun. Going on visits has been fun, so just doing that all this summer and then just getting better. Now we’re here, Midnight Madness is where it’s fun to be.”You’re getting ready to announce your college commitment this Saturday, so I know no spoilers, but what has that process looked like for you in narrowing down your options? “It was a real good process. The top eight schools have done it the best. I’m not going to say other schools didn’t do good, but (the top eight) also just did better recruitment. So just being there and being upfront and then showing me how a college is supposed to be and how to just grow young Black men and just men in general (has gone) real well, so just me coming up with my decision Aug. 12 is special.”What are some things you’re looking for when you’ve been going on these college visits? “Outstanding coaches. The coaches who are real around the program, who wants the kids to do well off the field also, so just having the coaches being there and understanding and telling me I’m a top priority and stuff like that. It’s where I’m gonna go to school. It’s just very big for me.”Are you wanting to play basketball and football? “I do want to play both right now, but as you can see, I’m going to college for football. It’s my main focus. So if they let me do both, I’d be very blessed to do that, but football is my main focus right now, trying to get better on the field and off the field.”What led to that decision? “Football was my first love. I had some concussions back when I was little, and then having the Millwood coaches just being great role models for me in life and school when I was off the field, (now) just having them coach me on the field is all so real. So the Millwood coaches, man, I just want to shout out to them for giving me my love back for the game.”More: How Millwood’s Darwin Franklin can impact Oklahoma high school football in new OFBCA roleMillwood’s Jaden Nickens (20) dunks the ball between Metro Christian’s Mario Darrington (5) and Brady Cox (24) during the Class 3A boys basketball state championship between Millwood and Metro Christian at the State Fair Arena in Oklahoma City, Saturday, March 11, 2023. How will that feel Saturday to have that decision announced?“It’s gonna be a very big relief. I’m glad I’m getting this off early. It’s not a rush. I feel like the college I’m gonna pick is very genuine and I like it, and I want to be committed, so I’m just ready to get that done and then get ready for Aug. 31, ready to beat Heritage Hall Chargers (in the season opener).”You’re one of several big-time stars in the state’s 2025 class. What do you think of the class as a whole? “Oh, man, I feel like the 2025 class in the nation has the best class. Just in Oklahoma, we had great kids come out, and so just having that ‘25 class, the biggest class at Millwood, I just feel like the ‘25 class is really special.”This article originally appeared on Oklahoman: Millwood WR Jaden Nickens explains college football recruiting statushttps://s.yimg.com/rq/darla/4-11-1/html/r-sf.html
- The Topeka Capital-JournalWhere Kansas State football ranks in the preseason USA Today Coaches pollArne Green, Topeka Capital-JournalTue, Aug 8, 2023, 3:34 PM GMT+5:30·2 min read Kansas State football’s 2022 Big 12 championship continues to garner national respect. The Wildcats will open the 2023 season ranked No. 17 in the USA Today Coaches poll, released Monday. It is their first preseason appearance in the poll since 2017. The ranking comes on the heels of amassing a 10-4 overall record last season, which included K-State beating TCU in overtime in the Big 12 championship game before falling to Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. The Wildcats were No. 14 in the final ranking both by the coaches and Associated Press. Fueling this year’s optimism for K-State in its fifth year under head coach Chris Klieman is an offense that returns eight starters, including quarterback Will Howard, all-conference tight end Ben Sinnott and the entire offensive line, led by All-America left guard Cooper Beebe. Linebackers Daniel Green and Austin Moore, along with preseason all-conference safety Kobe Savage, lead the defense. Kansas State quarterback Will Howard (18) holds up the 2022 Big 12 championship trophy after the Wildcats’ 31-28 victory over TCU on Dec. 3 in Arlington, Texas. Related: Defending champ Kansas State is no longer a sleeper in the Big 12 football preseason pollKansas State football picked second in Big 12 preseason pollThe Wildcats also were picked second by the media behind Texas in the Big 12 preseason poll. The Longhorns lead five conference teams in the USA Today poll at No. 12, followed by TCU at No. 16, K-State at 17, Oklahoma at No. 19, and Texas Tech at No. 24. Utah, which joins the league in 2024, came in at No. 14. Five other Big 12 teams — Baylor, Oklahoma State, Houston, Brigham Young, and Kansas — also received votes, along with future conference member Arizona, and 2023 K-State nonconference opponents Missouri and Troy. Defending national champion Georgia was the clear-cut favorite of the voting panel, receiving 61 first-place votes, and was followed by Michigan at No. 2 with no first-place votes. The other first-place votes went to No. 3 Alabama with four, and No. 4 Ohio State with one, while LSU rounded out the top five. Kansas State opens its 2023 season with a 6 p.m. Sept. 2 contest against Southeast Missouri at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. The Wildcats play host to Troy at 11 a.m. on Sept. 9, travel to Missouri on Sept. 16 for another 11 a.m. kickoff and then play host to Central Florida in its Sept. 23 Big 12 opener. Arne Green is based in Salina and covers Kansas State University sports for the Gannett network. He can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter at @arnegreen.This article originally appeared in Topeka Capital-Journal: Kansas State football number 17 in the preseason coaches poll
- Newcastle swoop for Livramento from SouthamptonAFPTue, Aug 8, 2023, 4:23 PM GMT+5:30·1 min reading Livramento (left) has joined Newcastle from Southampton (Adrian DENNIS)Newcastle completed the signing of defender Tino Livramento from Southampton on Tuesday for a reported initial fee of £32 million ($41 million). Livramento, 20, impressed during the 2021/22 season shortly after moving to St. Mary’s from Chelsea. However, he missed most of last season due to an anterior cruciate ligament injury sustained in April 2022 as Southampton were relegated from the Premier League. The BBC said the total fee could rise to £40 million should performance-related bonuses be met. Newcastle boss Eddie Howe has now added three new players to his squad during the transfer window following the arrivals of Italian international midfielder Sandro Tonali and winger Harvey Barnes.”At 20, he already has lots of attributes that I admire but he also has the potential and drive to grow with this team,” said Howe in a club statement.”I’m looking forward to working with him and to seeing him develop in a Newcastle shirt.”Backed by the Saudi sovereign wealth fund, Newcastle has qualified for the Champions League for the first time in 20 years. Livramento, who has signed a five-year contract, said the Magpies’ upward curve played a major role in attracting him to St. James’ Park.”The way the manager plays football is really attractive and I feel like it suits me as a player,” said the England under-21 international.”With how well the team did last season, the trajectory that we’re on now, I’m just looking forward to being a part of that.”Newcastle begin their Premier League campaign at home to Aston Villa on Saturday. k cal/pi
- England’s quarter-final, Women’s World Cup 2023: When is it and how to watch on TVTelegraph SportTue, Aug 8, 2023, 7:35 PM GMT+5:30·6 min read England will face Colombia in the World Cup last eight – Getty Images/Robert CianfloneEngland’s 2023 World Cup continues but only after they scraped past last-16 opponents Nigeria following a penalty shoot-out.Their reward is a quarter-final match against Colombia, who beat Jamaica 1-0 in Melbourne on Tuesday to reach the last eight of the tournament.Looking further ahead, the Lionesses, if victorious in Saturday’s quarter-final, could then play a semi-final against either Australia or France.What and when is it?Kick-off is at 11.30 am UK time (8.30 pm Sydney local time) on Saturday, August 12.View the full fixtures and results here.Where is the match being played?England’s quarter-final against Colombia will be at Stadium Australia, Sydney.How to watch broadcasting rights for the Women’s World Cup are being shared between BBC and ITV. Because the BBC got the first pick of the round-of-16 games (and chose England’s match with Nigeria), ITV will broadcast England’s quarter-final on Saturday.Back England to win the World Cup with these Women’s World Cup betting offers and free bets.Who is in England’s squad?Goalkeepers: Mary Earps (Manchester United), Hannah Hampton (Aston Villa), Ellie Roebuck (Manchester City)Defenders:Millie Bright (Chelsea), Lucy Bronze (Barcelona), Jess Carter (Chelsea), Niamh Charles (Chelsea), Alex Greenwood (Manchester City), Esme Morgan (Manchester City), Lotte Wubben-Moy (Arsenal)Midfielders:Laura Coombs (Manchester City), Jordan Nobbs (Aston Villa), Georgia Stanway (Bayern Munich), Ella Toone (Manchester United), Keira Walsh (Barcelona), Katie Zelem (Manchester United)Forwards:Rachel Daly (Aston Villa), Bethany England (Tottenham Hotspur), Lauren Hemp (Manchester City), Lauren James (Chelsea), Chloe Kelly (Manchester City), Katie Robinson (Brighton & Hove Albion), Alessia Russo (Manchester United)Colombia scouting report: What England can expect in Women’s World Cup quarter-finalBy Tom Garry, women’s football reporter, the Melbourne Rectangular StadiumEngland will face a cacophony of Colombian noise in Sydney on Saturday after the South Americans booked their quarter-final meeting with the Lionesses courtesy of a 1-0 victory over Jamaica in Melbourne.Colombia is ranked 25th in the world, 21 places below England, and may be something of an unknown quantity to many Lionesses fans. But they will present plenty of problems for Sarina Wiegman’s side in Saturday’s showdown.Colombia will feel like the ‘home’ team Colombians have been the most vocally-supported overseas side at this World Cup, and their supporters are likely to descend on Sydney’s Stadium Australia in their tens of thousands. Their fans dominated the 27,706-strong crowd at the comparatively small Melbourne Rectangular Stadium on Tuesday, and now they are set to make up a majority of the turnout at the 80,000-capacity venue in Sydney.In their tense win over Jamaica, ‘Las Cafeteras’ was backed by a relentless wall of noise, unlike anything seen at these finals in any games not involving the two host nations, from the high-pitched whistling when a refereeing decision went Jamaica’s way to the chest-pumping roar whenever Colombia counter-attacked to the chaotic scenes of celebration at full time.With some 11,000 Colombians reported to live in Sydney alone, there is a sizeable expat community Down Under but also many thousands have travelled, and their colourful contribution made Melbourne’s Olympic Park area lively before kick-off.England must prepare to feel like an away team on Saturday and they will have to cope with an intimidating atmosphere.The pace and trickery of the brilliant Linda CaicedoThe most dangerous threat for Colombia on the pitch will come in the form of 18-year-old Real Madrid sensation Caicedo, who drew adoring chants of ‘Linda, Linda, Linda’ from the Colombian fans. The crowd noise surged whenever she got the ball in an attacking position, and it was easy to understand why they are so excited about this young talent.Speaking after the match, Caicedo said of the England match-up: “We do not want to just get to the quarter-finals. It is a rival that is a world power, but we believe.”Caicedo, who scored a superb individual strike in Colombia’s group-stage victory over Germany, showed glimpses of her agility, close control and vision against Jamaica, and she nearly scored but clipped over the bar from her best chance after skilfully stepping inside her marker.Her tendency to hug the touchline to try to find space will give Wiegman a tactical decision to make: will she stick with the 3-5-2 formation that England deployed against China and Nigeria or revert to a 4-2-3-1 but ask right-back Lucy Bronze to do a more defensively-focused shift to mark left-winger Caicedo?Linda Caicedo has been one of the players of the tournament – Shutterstock/Mark EvansThey are improving at the back this was Colombia’s second clean sheet of the tournament and on Tuesday defender Daniela Arias showed good strength to stand up to Khadija ‘Bunny’ Shaw, going toe-to-toe with one of the very best strikers in the Women’s Super League. She was also a threat in the air from set-pieces.Colombia did, however, have a couple of lucky escapes against Jamaica, with Drew Spence sending a bouncing header narrowly wide late on.The have pace on the counter and are hard to predictColombia were the first team to find a way to score against resolute Jamaica in this tournament, after France, Brazil and Panama all tried and failed to do so. Their goal came when Catalina Usme collected a fine long ball with an excellent first touch and had the composure to find the corner of the net with a classy finish.Jamaica goalkeeper Becky Spencer, who had kept three clean sheets in a row prior to this, was proud of her side’s run to the last 16, but added on Colombia’s strengths: “They are very unpredictable, you don’t know what they’re going to do. Their players are very quick and they are very skillful.“At any moment they can produce a bit of magic and I think they’ve got that across the board. It’s not just one or two players – they have it across the board. Technically they’re magic on the ball, so when you’re defending them, you’ve got to make sure you concentrate enough times.” Catalina Usme scored Colombia’s winning goal against Jamaica – AP/Hamish BlairThey are full of confidence and ‘dreaming big’Match-winner Usme said she and her team-mates have come to Australia for “seven finals”, not just to reach this stage. “[This win] gave us the opportunity to make history – but we can go beyond,” she said. “We came here to play seven finals. In the game against England, we’ll be facing them one-on-one. We won’t be speculating about how we will do.“We are dreaming big. But we know we can pull it off, we can do it. The mentality we have in this team has been crucial in this World Cup.”Their manager Nelson Abadía added more of a cautionary tone but also said he believes his team can beat the bookmakers’ favourites: “With English football’s history, we need to be cautious, but the football at this World Cup [overall] has shown, the gaps have been closing down, and Colombia have been playing with good stability.“England are one of the favourites of course, but we have also faced Germany and they were one of the favourites, and we had the composure, we were wise enough [to beat Germany]. It won’t be easy, it will be tough.”Broaden your horizons with award-winning British journalism. Try The Telegraph free for 1 month, then enjoy 1 year for just $9 with our US-exclusive offer.
- UCLA’s Chip Kelly points to Notre Dame football as an example for realignmentBen BolchWed, Aug 9, 2023, 12:43 AM GMT+5:30·4 min read35UCLA coach Chip Kelly walks the sidelines at Autzen Stadium, where the Bruins played Oregon on Oct. 22. (Chris Pietsch / Associated Press)It’s going to be a reunion of sorts when UCLA and USC join the Big Ten in 2024. Oregon and Washington are now coming along as part of a superconference that might need some rebranding to reflect its growing size.“I’m fired up for the Big Eighteen,” UCLA coach Chip Kelly cracked Tuesday. Kelly coached at Oregon several years before he arrived in Westwood, meaning he fully understands how adding two more West Coast teams to the Big Ten could lessen travel concerns, preserve rivalries and intensify recruiting battles in the old Pac-12 geographic footprint. Yet the move won’t alleviate the travel worries of teams in other sports that will play more games, often in harsher weather while traveling to the Midwest and the East Coast. Kelly has an idea for how to resolve that issue, expanding upon the proposal for realignment he unveiled to reporters last week. As part of the Kelly Plan, football would be uncoupled from all other sports at every school to mitigate all those unnecessary airline miles. There’s an example of one school already doing it in the Midwest.“Notre Dame is an independent in football, but they’re in a conference for everything else,” Kelly said, alluding to the Fighting Irish‘s other sports primarily playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference. “Why aren’t we all independent for football? Take the 64 teams in Power Five and make that one division, take the 64 teams in Group of Five, and make that another division. We play for a championship, they play for a championship and no one else gets affected. Read more: Tired of nonstop realignment? UCLA’s Chip Kelly may have the common-sense solution“Our sport’s different than everybody else — we only play once a week, travel’s not a big deal for football, but it is a big deal for other sports. So that’s my theory.”Kelly would not say whether he wanted UCLA to play Oregon and Washington every year as part of a West Coast pod of the Big Ten, adding that no one asked him and he didn’t have a vote in the matter. Some have speculated that Oregon and Washington tagging along with the L.A. schools to their new conference could negate any recruiting advantages UCLA would have otherwise enjoyed in the Pacific Northwest among prospects eager to play in the Big Ten. Kelly disputed the idea that there was any correlation.“You want to know what’s going on in recruiting right now?” Kelly asked. “It’s all NIL. So whoever has the most money is getting the most players.”Nil to worry about? A day after saying he was staying off social media, quarterback Dante Moore went on Twitter over the weekend to dispute a post on Bruin Report Online stating that the true freshman was unhappy with his Name, Image, and License situation.“To clear the Air these ‘Rumors’ are False,” Moore wrote. “I’m blessed and thankful to be a Bruin. I Love being around this brotherhood! #GoBruins” Read more: Oregon and Washington join Big Ten and Pac-12 is in peril. What happens next? Asked about the situation Tuesday, Kelly said he was unaware of it until the reporter brought it up.“That’s the first I’ve ever heard of it,” Kelly said, “so it’s not a distraction to me.”Moore, the Bruins’ highest-rated quarterback prospect in at least two decades, remains locked in a tight battle with redshirt junior Ethan Garbers for the starting job. Kelly said he would name a starter before the season opener against Coastal Carolina on Sept. 2 and suggested that whoever won the job would remain in that role indefinitely.“If you’re a quarterback, then I don’t think you need to be looking over your shoulder,” Kelly said. “You need to go play and not worry about it. We don’t say, ‘All right, you’re going to start; however, if this, this and this happens, you’re not going to play.’ I don’t think that instills much confidence in whoever wins that starting job. I mean, it’s not like you do that at any other position.”Etc.Linebacker Ale Kaho, who missed all of last season and spring practice while recovering from a leg injury, completed a second consecutive day of participating in individual drills during the portion of practice open to reporters. … Linebacker JonJon Vaughns, rounding into shape from baseball season, participated in individual drills for the first time Tuesday. … Offensive lineman Siale Taupaki, recovering from an undisclosed injury, was also increasing his practice participation, Kelly said. Get the best, most interesting, and strangest stories of the day from the L.A. sports scene and beyond from our newsletter The Sports Report. This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.
- Eagles cut athletic rookie offensive lineman among movesDave ZangaroTue, Aug 8, 2023, 5:15 PM GMT+5:30·3 min readEagles cut athletic rookie offensive lineman among movesEagles cut athletic rookie offensive lineman among moves originally appeared on NBC Sports PhiladelphiaThe Eagles had an off day on Monday but that doesn’t mean they weren’t busy adjusting their roster. The team waived rookie offensive tackle, Trevor Reid, according to the NFL’s transaction sheet. That cut is a mild surprise. Reid is an undrafted rookie out of Louisville, who had the type of athleticism I thought offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland would want to develop. While Reid hadn’t stood out in a good way this summer, he didn’t stand out in a bad way either. Reid’s contract included $110,000 guaranteed; he was one of six to get over $100K guaranteed. While Reid wasn’t invited to the Combine, here are his numbers from the Louisville pro day and how they would rank among offensive line at the Combine:40-yard dash: 5.00s (6th)Vertical jump: 38” (1st)Broad: 10’4” (1st)3-cone: 7.34 (3rd)Bench press: 25 (t-16th)Waiving Reid is just the latest in a flurry of moves for the Eagles over the past couple of days. After all of it, their roster is full at 90. The Eagles needed to open a roster spot. Reminder: Josh Sills was also activated off the Commissioner Exempt List on Friday and now takes up a roster spot.A couple of other notes from the transaction sheet on Monday: LB Davion Taylor cleared waivers and is a free agent; WR Charleston Rambo cleared waivers and reverted to IR. Here’s a quick chronological recap of the Eagles’ roster moves since Sunday:• Signed OL Josh Andrews: This is Andrews’ third stint with the Eagles. He’s carved out a nice career for himself as an undrafted player out of Oregon State. The 32-year-old has played in 48 games with 9 starts. He’ll be competing for a roster spot.• Waived LB Davion Taylor, waived/injury WR Charleston Rambo: Both of these guys have already cleared waivers. Taylor was a third-round pick in 2020 but just never worked out. The Eagles knew he was raw when they drafted him but Taylor never developed the way they hoped. Rambo, who played with Jalen Hurts at Oklahoma, was signed after a tryout this spring. He impressed in the XFL in 2022, but Rambo hadn’t stood out much in camp.• Signed LBs Zach Cunningham and Myles Jack: Both are veterans who have a ton of experience in the NFL. Linebacker was the Eagle’s weakest position on the roster in both numbers and talent. It’s not surprising that Howie Roseman made some moves and these two signings don’t necessarily mean he won’t make another move at some point. Both new linebackers were at practice on Sunday at the Linc but were not yet participating. They’ll need to get caught up to speed on the defense and will then be fighting for roster spots and presumably be fighting for the vacant starting spot next to Nakobe Dean, who has been dealing with an ankle injury.“We just wanted to add competition to the room, and that’s one of our core values, is competition,” head coach Nick Sirianni said. “So, when you bring in good players as these two guys have been in this league, that’s only going to raise the level of everybody else in the room and on the defense.”Here are a few new roster numbers: Zach Cunningham: 46
Myles Jack: 47
Josh Andrews: 61
Josh Sills: 73Subscribe to Eagle Eye anywhere you get your podcasts:
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- Bears release first depth chart of the year ahead of preseason opener Alex Shapiro Tue, Aug 8, 2023, 9:51 PM GMT+5:30·2 min read6Bears release first depth chart of the year ahead of preseason opener originally appeared on NBC Sports ChicagoThe Bears released their first depth chart of the year on Tuesday, as they get ready for Saturday’s preseason opener against the Titans. There aren’t too many surprises across the board, but there are a few position groups and players worth highlighting. Let’s start on offense. The biggest competition has been in the team’s revamped and seemingly stacked running backs room. Both Khalil Herbert and D’onta Foreman seem capable of handling a starter’s share of snaps. The team is incredibly high on rookie Roschon Johnson, too. Interestingly Johnson has not been spotted repping with the first-team offense at all over the summer. Additionally, Foreman seems to be taking more and more first-team reps. Yet, it is Herbert listed first on the depth chart. The depth chart also confirms what we’ve seen developing in the depth department. Larry Borom has emerged as a backup left tackle, and could very well act as a swing tackle if needed. Alex Leatherwood seems to have found a home at left guard as well. When Teven Jenkins was missing at practice last week, it was Leatherwood who filled in for him. Finally, Tyler Scott and Velus Jones Jr. appear to be competing for the WR4 job. On defense, things don’t exactly reflect what we’ve seen on the practice field. It’s notable that the team still has Jack Sanborn listed as the starting strongside linebacker, even though he’s missed most of training camp with injuries. Noah Sewell has filled in for him there. Kyler Gordon is listed as the second outside corner, but we’ve seen him exclusively playing in the slot. Instead, we’ve seen rookies Terell Smith and Tyrique Stevenson splitting reps opposite Jaylon Johnson. The Bears have used their base defense for this depth chart, so there’s no slot corner listing. Further, the Bears have Gervon Dexter listed as the backup three-tech behind Justin Jones, and Zacch Pickens playing behind Andrew Billings at nose. It’s been flipped for the most part at practice. Dexter has come in for Billings and Pickens has come in for Jones. Finally, with the addition of Yannick Ngakoue, Trevis Gipson is buried at the defensive end. He’s currently listed with the fourth-team, behind Terrell Lewis and rookie UDFA D’Anthony Jones. On special teams, there are also no surprises. Velus Jones Jr. has a second chance to prove he can be just as effective at punt return as he was on kick return last season. However, it should be said there’s no shot we see DJ Moore or Eddie Jackson returning punts, given how important they are on offense and defense.