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Chicago Bears Training Camp Practice No. 9 notes: Chase Claypool and Eddie Jackson start first camp fight

Nicholas Moreano Avatar
August 5, 2023

LAKE FOREST — A big hit was delivered. A football was thrown. A helmet was ripped off. The franchise quarterback spoke. And the general manager intervened.

All this happened after Eddie Jackson popped Chase Claypool in bounds on a drag route near the left sideline during team drills. Claypool responded by throwing the ball at Jackson and then things got heated. Since the play happened near the defense’s sideline, the defensive players came to Jackson’s aid. The offensive players were there shortly after. In the scrum of players, Claypool ripped off Jackson’s helmet.

After the two were separated, the situation still didn’t dissipate. While Jackson was still in the team drills, he continued to talk to Claypool, who wasn’t in on the play. Following the team period, Justin Fields went over to speak with members of the defense, including Jackson and Jaylen Johnson. As the next portion of practice was beginning, Claypool and Jackson were talking to each other gain. This time, general manager Ryan Poles stepped in between the two.

Finally, the situation between Claypool and Jackson de-escalated.

Defensive coordinator Alan Williams was asked about the play in his post-practice press conference.

“I love a lively practice,” Williams said. “And I’m not concerned about the offense. I have my hands full for sure just being the coordinator. But I love our energy. I love the way we run to the ball. But I would say this — to make sure it’s competitive, not combative. That means we are competing. We want to be elite competitors. Elite guys in how we compete. But we don’t want it to be combative. I don’t like the pushing and shoving after the whistle. When they let us do that in the ball game, hey, we’ll be all over it in practice. Part of it is playing hard, playing fast, playing with energy. I love the chippiness. That says that we’re establishing an identity. But the after-the-whistle stuff, yeah, I’m not for that part.”

The energy around the padded practice remained. The offense and the defense both were heard and some hits were being delivered.

Here are the notable plays that stood out from Saturday’s ninth training camp practice.

1 on 1s

  • Velus Jones Jr. won his rep against Tyrique Stevenson on a fade ball from Justin Fields
  • Darnell Mooney got Kyler Gordon on a double move. Honestly, it was a good rep by both players. Gordon had good initial coverage on Mooney, but the receiver sold the break to the outside and went back in the opposite direction.
  • Cole Kmet got open against Elijah Hicks in the left corner of the end zone and came away with a touchdown.
  • Claypool won his rep against Johnson on an in-breaking route. Fields was the quarterback on the play.
  • Daurice Fountain beat Stevenson on a deep ball in-between the left sideline and the hashmark. Good ball from P.J. Walker on the rep.
  • Teven Jenkins easily won his rep against Andrew Brown.
  • Larry Borom had a good rep, holding his ground, against Jalen Harris.
  • Ja’Tyre Carter won his rep against Gervon Dexter Sr. Carter did a good job holding up against Dexter’s bullrush.
  • Harris drew a holding call against Robert Haskins.
  • Darnell Wright won his rep against Dominique Robinson. The second-year pass rusher tried to utilize the spin move, but Wright kept Robinson in front of him.
Darnell Wright blocks Dominique Robinson during 1-on-1 drills. (Video credit to Chicago Bears Instagram Stories)

11 on 11s

  • Fields had good protection from his offensive line against the first-team defense. He saw Mooney separating on a corner route near the left sideline, but the ball was late and underthrown. Eddie Jackson nearly came away with a one-handed interception on the rep, but the ball fell incomplete.
  • Dylan Cole, who was starting in place of Tremaine Edmunds, had a big hit on Trestan Ebner.
  • Tyler Scott had a ball bounce right off his hands. Scott ran a route towards the left sideline and he couldn’t complete the play. This was the first of three dropped passes and a muffed punt in the practice.
  • Cody Whitehair had a low snap to Fields, but he was able to still get the ball off to Khalil Herbert in the flat to the right. Herbert lowered a shoulder on Johnson and spun off the cornerback.
  • Herbert caught a pass to the left side of the formation after initially bobbling it. Rasheem Green punched the ball out, but Herbert was able to recover the ball.
  • Fields connected with Mooney near the left sideline. The offenses’ sideline got riled up after the catch.
  • D’Onta Foreman caught a pass in the flat to the right side of the formation. Equanimeous St. Brown had a good block on the defensive back on the play.
  • On a run play to the right, Claypool blocked Stevenson. The rookie cornerback’s mouthpiece fell, and Claypool stomped on it with his left foot.
  • Foreman ran the ball to the left and was able to get to the edge of the defense and turn the corner. On the play, Dexter ended up on the ground and Smith failed to contain the edge.
  • Zacch Pickens batted down the ball at the line of scrimmage. Walker was the quarterback on the rep.
  • Roschon Johnson used the truck stick on A.J. Thomas and spun off of the defender. The crowd at Halas Hall gave a loud ovation after the play.
  • Walker connected with Robert Tonyan on a nice toe-tap catch along the right sideline.
  • Nsimba Webster made his biggest play of camp with a 30+ yard touchdown reception. Walker found Webster all alone in the right corner of the end zone. The offensive players on the field came over to celebrate, and so did Fields who was on the sidelines.
  • The Bears did a two-minute drill towards the end of practice. The offense had to drive the field from their own 30 with 1:15 remaining on the clock tied 10-10 with one timeout. It was the first-team offense against primarily backups. However, Smith did play on that unit as one of the corners. Fields started the drive with a completion to Kmet. Then Moore caught a pass near the left sideline. The Bears took a timeout after the play. Fields then threw a pass out of bounds on the next play. Brown caught a pass on the next play. Then Fields attempted to hit Moore down the left sideline, but he threw off his back foot and the ball sailed out of bounds. For the last play of the drive, Fields found Jones in the middle of the field, which put the Bears in field-goal range. Andre Szmyt nailed a 45+ yard field goal.
  • The second-team offense went up against the starters in the same two-minute scenario. The offense started with a holding penalty. Then Scott dropped a catchable ball on a slant route. Unfortunately, my notes from practice ended right there.

7 on 7s

  • Fields completed a short pass to Moore on the right side of the field
  • Fields then connected with Jones on a route that was between the corner and safety. Jackson was right there as soon as Jones made the catch. If it was full speed, it’s fair to question if Jones would’ve held on to the ball.
  • Claypool caught a pass from Fields over the middle of the field.
  • Fields completed a pass to Mooney on the left side of the formation. Terell Smith was in coverage on the play.
  • Later in the 7-on-7 session, Fields hit Moore again. This time on a hitch route to the left side.
  • Fields also connected with Kmet in the middle of the field.
  • Stephen Carlson also caught a pass from Fields during the 7-on-7 drills.
  • Walker threw a good deep ball down the left sideline to Walker. Stevenson had good coverage, but Scott had a step on the cornerback. The ball was where it needed to be, but Scott couldn’t make the catch.

Other Observations

  • Teven Jenkins returned to practice. Nate Davis, DeMarcus Walker, Tremaine Edmunds, Jaquan Brisker, Jack Sanborn, Dante Pettis were all seen at practice, but they did not participate.

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