Sunday, September 19, 2010

Manning active early

Danieal Manning has been active early in the game from his strong safety position with four tackles already in the game.

One of his stated desires to the Bears during his contract negotiations with the team last spring was to be more involved in the action instead of playing deep at free safety.  The Bears have moved him over to strong safety, and you can already tell he's more involved in what's going on near the line of scrimmage than he has been at almost any time during his pro career.

The Bears even have Manning lining up as a standup outside linebacker on some short-yardage plays.  On one of those plays just before the Cowboys scored, he dropped Marion Barber for a 1-yard gain as he slid down from that linebacker spot and made the tackle.  Then on first-and-goal from the 1-yard line, Manning met Marion Barber head on to keep him out of the end zone as Barber tried to go up and over the Chicago defense.

But Manning -- this time playing back deep at strong safety -- met him in mid-air and dropped him for no gain.

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