Bears Cut Young Defender, Re-Sign Offensive Lineman

Zachary Thomas

Getty Zachary Thomas has been added to the Chicago Bears' practice squad.

The Chicago Bears continue to fine tune their roster and practice squad with just over a week left before they begin their regular season against the San Francisco 49ers on September 11.

On September 2, the Bears announced they released rookie defensive Micah Dew-Treadway from the practice squad, while re-signing another rookie, offensive lineman Zachary Thomas, to take his spot.

Both players spent the entire offseason and preseason with the team. The Bears signed Dew-Treadway as an undrafted free agent following the 2022 draft after he spent seven seasons in college. He played four years at Notre Dame before transferring to the University of Minnesota, where he played for three years.

The Bears selected Thomas in the sixth-round out of San Diego State, and he’s currently the lone member of the Bears’ 11-player draft class on the practice squad. The other 10 draft picks of general manager Ryan Poles made the active roster.

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Dew-Treadway Grew Up a Bears Fan

Dew-Treadway grew up in Bolingbrook, Illinois, where he played high school football and rooted for his hometown Bears, paying particular attention to a defense that included team legends Brian Urlacher and Lance Briggs.

“Watching Briggs and Urlacher run around was just different,” Dew-Treadway told Dan Wiederer of the Chicago Tribune. “It just was. Those were my two dudes. And I didn’t even really understand what was going on.”

His favorite jersey remains a popular one in Bears Nation. “I rocked the Urlacher all the time,” Dew-Treadway added.

The 6-foot-4, 308-pound defender played 88 snaps over his three preseason appearances, and he finished with two total pressures and one hurry, with a 51.4 pass rush grade from Pro Football Focus. He also had a sack in Chicago’s first preseason game, a 19-14 win over the Kansas City Chiefs.

He’s now free to sign with any of the 31 other NFL teams. It’s also possible he lands back in Chicago if injury were to strike the defensive line.

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Bears Looking to Develop Thomas on PS

Thomas made the team’s initial 53-man roster, but he was waived along with defensive lineman Khyiris Tonga, linebackers Joe Thomas and Caleb Johnson and defensive back Duke Shelley to make room for the six players acquired via the waiver wire.

In his final season with the Aztecs in 2021, Thomas allowed 3.0 sacks, two QB hits and eight hurries in 412 pass block snaps playing left tackle, earning an 87.2 overall grade from PFF.

Poles, who is a former offensive lineman himself, must have liked Thomas’ traits enough to keep him around, so the team will likely be looking to help him develop while on the practice squad.

As it stands, Chicago’s 16-player practice squad consists of: quarterback Nathan Peterman, offensive linemen Zachary Thomas, Kellen Diesch, Dieter Eiselen and Lachavious Simmons, safety A.J. Thomas, linebacker Joe Thomas, tight end Chase Allen, defensive tackle Trevon Coley, receiver Isaiah Coulter, receiver Nsimba Webster, running back Darrynton Evans, linebacker DeMarquis Gates, cornerback Thomas Graham Jr., safety Davontae Harris and defensive end Sam Kamara.

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