Davis finds himself in same spot as last year

Reed Schreck

Muhsin Muhammad and Bernard Berrian are out. Brandon Lloyd and Marty Booker are in.

Hmm. That would seem to leave Rashied Davis right where he was on the Chicago Bears' receiving depth chart.

"It's the same numbers game," said Davis, doing the math at the team's Organized Team Activities this week at Halas Hall.

Still, that's the only thing unchanged in his opinion.

"It's sort of more wide open," he said. "We don't have any clear-cut starters. It's time we have to perform.

"Our receiving corps, nobody is expecting anything from us. Myself, I'm expecting a lot out of myself. We need to perform, make plays and catch the ball, period."

While numbers remain similar, Davis appears to be a different player. For sure, there's more muscle on his 5-foot-9, 187--pound frame.

He smiles almost embarrassingly when asked about the increased bulk.

"Maybe a little bit," he said. "But not too much, though. I started working out a little sooner than I've done in the past.

"I was sort of a free agent and didn't know what would happen. I needed to be prepared in case someone wanted to work me out."

That was one reason. He offered another:

"Mostly, it was because I felt like I was coming back here and we lost Moose and Bernard. I was sort of the only one with any experience, so I felt I needed to play a lot better.

"Hopefully, my role expands."

He wants to make a bigger impression, of course, on the coaching staff by increasing his production.

As a slot receiver, Davis has 39 catches for 468 yards and two touchdowns the last two seasons after being converted from cornerback in 2006.

He knows, looking around, that he knows the system better or at least as well any wideout in camp. He knows he's gotten better each year.

"I really have a better grasp of everything," he said. "I'm a lot more mature in the offense. I'm looking for big things out of myself."

Whether he starts, we'll see.

"I don't even focus on that," he said. "I'm just coming out every day and working hard every day and be the best I can. They'll make those decisions.

"When you lose two big pieces of the offense (in Muhammad and Berrian), somebody has to step up, and why not me?"

Reed Schreck can be reached at (815) 987-1381 or rschreck@rrstar.com.