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LG Matt Slauson's enthusiasm hard to miss at Bears' OTAs

Starting left guard Matt Slauson's enthusiasm is impossible to miss at Chicago Bears' organized team activities.

The team's sudden release of respected veteran center Roberto Garza left a leadership void on the offensive line that Slauson talked openly in the offseason about wanting to fill.

If Week 2 of OTAs is any indication, Slauson figures to assume a more vocal role both on-and-off the field in 2015, following an injury-plagued second year in Chicago. The left guard played in just five games in 2014 and went on injured reserver in early November because of a torn pectoral muscle.

Now healthy, Slauson stood out on the practice field on Wednesday, raising his arms in the air and high-fiving teammates after almost every offensive touchdown in team drills. The seven-year NFL veteran even managed to pull off an end zone celebration following one particular score. Slauson left his feet -- a rare sight for an offensive lineman -- and touched hips with another player after a successful red zone conversion.

Even head coach John Fox took notice of Slauson's vocal approach.

"He's a veteran player that's been around," Fox said. "Probably last year and he'd probably tell you the same thing it was frustrating. Anytime you get injured as a player and you're not able to go out there with your teammates it's a tough pill to swallow. He's really attacked this offseason. He's been great with our coaching staff and with his teammates and I've definitely seen him take a step forward in the leadership department.”