One practice in, and Santonio Holmes hasn’t been kicked out of any huddles.
Not that we know of, anyway.
It’s a start.
It also beats the last time Holmes changed teams. What a Hallmark moment that was. The day he was traded from the Steelers to the Jets, Holmes was suspended four games for weed. More time to turn the city into a Big Apple bong, right, dude?
That’s just a slice of what the Bears are dealing with. They’re gambling with a guy who was sitting at home for eight months because they’re desperate less than three weeks before the season opener.
Trestman is looking for a third wide receiver to line up with Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery, and that third receiver ought to get single-coverage and be more dangerous because of Marshall and Jeffery.
When you factor in Matt Forte and Martellus Bennett, the third wideout wouldn’t seem to be vital, but that’s the formation all the popular kids are playing.
Problem is, Trestman doesn’t have anyone he trusts to play it.
Josh Morgan gets the first shot against the Seahawks in Friday night’s exhibition game. Then, who knows? “It’s still wide-open,’’ Trestman said.
Maybe that competition will include Holmes if he’s still with the team as late as Friday. Hey, that’s not me. That’s Trestman. He’s the one calling Holmes “day-to-day.’’ As if he’s injured. Arguably, he is.
Holmes’ history tell you he’s injured physically. He’s trying to play football at a high level despite a foot injury requiring surgery two seasons ago and a hamstring injury suffered last year.
Holmes’ history also tells you he’s injured mentally and/or emotionally. He faced a domestic violence charge that was later dismissed and was named in a civil suit that claimed he threw a glass in the face of a woman in a Florida bar.
As for football issues that set off character alarms, Holmes was such a lousy teammate that he was kicked out of a Jets huddle in the last two minutes of a game with the playoffs on the line. His inability to work and play well with others also prompted Jets coach Rex Ryan to discontinue naming captains; Holmes was one of them but wasn’t providing leadership you’d want anyone to follow.
Holmes said the right things Monday, even if the cynic in me thinks it’s an act.
He didn’t deny any of his history Monday. He just advocated ignoring it.
“Nobody’s talked about it,’’ Holmes said of his new teammates-for-now. “Nobody’s brought it up, so it won’t be an issue.’’
But it is an issue. That’s why the coach said the player is day-to-day. A coach doesn’t say that if he’s confident. A coach says that when he knows he’s desperate and gambling.
The good news is, this is not an unwinnable gamble. Brandon Marshall came here with some bad acting on his rap sheet. He showed all the stability of a blasting cap before becoming a Bear.
But he changed. He controlled whatever demons ate him up previously. He worked on and around character flaws.
The Bears also just spent a week putting Martellus Bennett into timeout until he figured out how to be a better teammate. That seems to have worked. For a week, at least.
It can happen, then, with Holmes. That’s what the Bears are gambling on. I just wish they didn’t have to gamble this close to the opener of a season with legitimate Super Bowl hopes.Copyright © 2015, CT Now