Chase Claypool’s strength when healthy? ‘Making contested catches’

Claypool remains injured, but receivers coach Tyke Tolbert said he’s nonetheless been happy with his training camp performance.

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Bears receiver Chase Claypool throws the football before his team’s first preseason game.

Bears receiver Chase Claypool throws the football before his team’s first preseason game.

Quinn Harris/Getty Images

Chase Claypool remains injured, but receivers coach Tyke Tolbert said he’s nonetheless been happy with his training camp performance.

“Making contested catches,” Tolbert said before Wednesday’s practice. “If he’s not open and guys are still on him, he still makes the catch. So I like that about him. And he should. He’s 6-5 or whatever it is. He’s gonna say 6-13.”

The Bears need Claypool to make a significant leap in the last year of his contract. Sitting out most of the offseason program and the last two weeks with a hamstring injury hasn’t helped.

Tolbert said Claypool staying focused — he quizzes him about the playbook more than any other player, and the coach says he answers correctly — but the Bears need to see him on the field.

“Just to see him being the physical player that he is with or without the ball,” he said. “He’s a physical guy blocking without the ball, he’s a physical guy running with the ball, hard to tackle.”

Cut convos

With cut day looming Tuesday, running backs coach David Walker knows he’ll have a lot of work to do. He, offensive coordinator Luke Getsy and special teams coordinator Richard Hightower will meet to figure out who needs which player.

The Bears will rotate Khalil Herbert, D’Onta Foreman and Roschon Johnson at running back. The other running backs will have to play special teams to earn a spot on the club.

“When you get to the point of let’s say the fourth or fifth runner, then special teams is going to have more say than what we need from the offensive perspective,” Walker said.

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