Chicago Bears waive 7th-round pick Braverman; practice squad likely

Daniel Braverman’s quest to make the Chicago Bears’ 53-man roster is over for now.

Reports have surfaced that the Bears’ 7th-round pick has been waived, as first reported by ProFootballTalk’s Josh Alper.

After starting off training camp strong and making a number of spectacular plays in practice—see below—Braverman just couldn’t get those plays to translate onto the field against opponents that weren’t the Bears’ defense.

To be fair, the Bears gave him every opportunity, especially in last Thursday’s preseason finale against the Browns, to make his case to get onto the roster, but he registered just two catches for 17 yards and failed to make a mark on special teams, misplaying two punts when given opportunities in the return game.

Instead, Chicago will opt to go with a combination of Eddie Royal and Marc Mariani as their slot receivers. In particular, there was speculation that Royal could be a candidate for a surprise cut if Braverman showed he could play right away, given the veteran’s inability to play this preseason and his injury-plagued season last year.

At this point, however, it genuinely appears that, if Royal is able to remain on the field, his abilities are far above those of the rookie at this point in time, regardless of potential. Given what we’ve seen from Braverman so far, it’d be hard to believe he could match Royal’s production over nine games last year (37 catches, 238 yards, 1 TD) over a full season of work.

In particular, Braverman, despite his billing as a crafty route-runner with the ability to get open at will coming out of college, had trouble doing so in NFL action (excluding practice). His ability to sell routes was not always there, making him predictable and easy to cover. He also lacked a feel for running after the catch at times, running east-west rather than north-south one when he did have the ball in his hands.

The bright side is that while he wasn’t ready to play on an NFL-level just yet, that doesn’t mean he won’t be. He made a strong enough impression on the coaching staff that it’s likely the Bears bring him onto the practice squad if he goes unclaimed.

Then again, there’s always that chance that the New England Patriots try to make the rookie their latest Bears reclamation project…

In all likelihood, Braverman will get a chance to live out his NFL dream at some point. It just won’t be with the Bears at this moment.

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