Rookie receiver Dazz Newsome was the only Bears player to return a punt in Saturday’s exhibition game. With Tarik Cohen still out almost 10 months after knee surgery — and seemingly unlikely to start the season on the active roster — Newsome could be the choice of Bears coaches to be their Week 1 punt returner.
“I think I just need to show my abilities and what I can do, what I can bring to the table,” he said Tuesday. “I don’t think they’ve seen enough. I ain’t seen enough — so they couldn’t see enough.”
What does he want to show?
“That I can make people miss,” he said, “And that I can get up the field and turn it into a home run.”
The sixth-round pick said he’s starting to feel more comfortable in training camp.
“My first week back it was a little rough for me,” he said. “I was a little tired. But I definitely feel like my wind is getting back. But like I said, I still have more work to do.”
Newsome broke his collarbone during organized team activities in June and missed all of mandatory minicamp and the first 10 days of training camp. He said he’s picked up on subtleties of the position in the three weeks since.
“I feel like sometimes I used to always rush it — I rush my route,” he said.
Receiver Allen Robinson and receivers coach Mike Furrey have been telling Newsome to slow down and focus on the top of the route, where he makes a break. Particularly in man coverage, a good break will give him better separation than his speed would.
“Don’t try to rush it, or speed through it,” he said.
A special package?
While Andy Dalton will be the Week 1 starting quarterback, Nagy wouldn’t rule out a special package for backup Justin Fields.
“You know, it’s something that, you know, I don’t know,” Nagy said coyly. “Y’know?”
Nagy used a special package for Mitch Trubisky when Nick Foles started last year. It lasted one play — Trubisky hurt his shoulder on a run.
The Bears made five moves Tuesday to whittle their roster to 80 players by the league’s 3 p.m. deadline.
They put two veterans — defensive tackle Mike Pennel (groin) and safety Jordan Lucas (quad) — on injured reserve and cut running back C.J. Marable and offensive linemen Badara Traore and Dareuan Parker.
Teams must cut their rosters down to 53 players by 3 p.m. on Aug. 31.
This and that
o Cornerbacks Xavier Crawford (groin) and Teez Tabor (hamstring) did not practice because of injuries suffered Monday. Defensive tackle Angelo Blackson sat out with an illness. Inside linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe (illness) and receiver Javon Wims (oblique) returned to practice.
o The Bears gave tight end Jimmy Graham, defensive lineman Akiem Hicks and outside linebacker Khalil Mack sat out on a load management day.
o With long snapper Patrick Scales out with an ankle injury and tight end Cole Kmet, the emergency snapper, dealing with a hamstring problem, running back Ryan Nall handled the duties.