Posted by ESPN.com's Kevin Seifert
As they prepare for their mandatory mini-camp to open Tuesday, the Chicago Bears announced a series of inside-baseball news items on their Web site. Here's a run-down with a few comments from yours truly:
There is a long list of veterans who won't participate because they are still recovering from various surgeries: Cornerbacks Charles Tillman and Trumaine McBride, safety Kevin Payne, linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer and defensive tackle Dusty Dvoracek. Comment: That's one of the downsides of having mini-camp two months earlier than normal. Around the NFL, there are scores of players who wouldn't be ready to get on the field this early in the offseason.
Second-year defensive back Zackary Bowman will be moved from cornerback to free safety. Comment: Makes sense considering the relative lack of depth at that position, where the Bears last week signed former New Orleans safety Josh Bullocks.
New offensive lineman Frank Omiyale has played tackle and guard in his career, but he will work exclusively at left guard this week. Comment: It's been expected that Omiyale will replace Josh Beekman at that position. But that could change if the Bears don't re-sign free agent John St. Clair.
The Bears will give second-year receiver Earl Bennett a chance to win the starting job opposite Devin Hester. Comment: By process of elimination, Bennett is the only internal candidate for the job. That's a lot to ask from a player whose next NFL catch will be his first.