For the second year in a row the Bears have moved quarterback David Fales from their practice squad onto the active roster, and waived backup Jimmy Clausen.
As he did last year after week 12 when the Bears moved him onto the 53-man roster, Fales had drawn interest from other NFL teams, believed to include the Baltimore Ravens. Quarterback Joe Flacco went down for the season with a torn ACL on Sunday and Baltimore offensive coordinator Marc Trestman coached Fales last year after the Bears acquired him as a sixth-round pick out of San Jose State.
“I think, we know, we had some interest in David,” said coach John Fox. “It was a decision that we made organizationally to give him a look.”
Fales had drawn interest last year around this time from the New England Patriots and San Diego Chargers, causing the Bears to move him onto the regular roster. Any team can sign a player from another team’s practice squad without compensation but must put the player on the new team’s regular roster.
An accompanying question behind the move is whether the Bears have turned some additional attention onto the future after Sunday’s 17-15 loss to the Denver Broncos.
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“I think like a big part of our roster, we’re looking at young guys,” said Fox. “We’ll look for a practice-squad guy to bring in for the practice squad as we move forward. That’s not been done at this point.”
Clausen started one game in both 2014 and 2015, and entered games in both seasons after Jay Cutler was injured. The Bears were shut out at Seattle in Clausen’s one start this season and lost to the Detroit Lions late last season when Cutler was benched. Clausen, who appeared in mop-up duty last year in the Green Bay and New England blowout losses, suffered a concussion in the Detroit game and was back on the bench the final week of the season.
Clausen replaced Cutler after the latter suffered a hamstring strain in the loss to Arizona this year. Clausen completed 14 of 23 passes for 121 yards against Arizona, then had a dismal outing against the Seahawks, completing nine of 17 passes for 63 yards in a conservative game plan intended to minimize risk.