Ben Braunecker

Ben Braunecker

Tight End #84
Team: Chicago Bears
Ht / Wt:6'3" / 250 lb.
College:Harvard
Age:26
Born:February 7, 1994
Drafted:2016 / UDFA

Ben Braunecker: Let go by Chicago

The Bears cut Braunecker on Thursday.

Analysis: Braunecker put up career numbers with the Bears last season, logging six catches for 59 yards and his first touchdown across 11 games. Despite having showcased a step forward in his development, offseason additions Cole Kmet, Jimmy Graham and Demetrius Harris have now made Braunecker the odd man out in Chicago's crowded tight end room. He hit injured reserve due to a concussion in December, but has since fully recovered and will be free to search for a chance with another organization.

July 23, 2020 4:22 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Back for 2020

Braunecker (concussion) remains in the mix among Chicago's nine tight ends, Mike McGraw of the Chicago Daily Herald reports.

Analysis: The 26-year-old landed on injured reserve with a concussion in December, but he put up career highs with six catches for 59 yards in 11 games while also catching his first touchdown. The Bears were disappointed with their tight end production so brought in new talent this offseason, drafting Cole Kmet in the second round while signing Jimmy Graham and Demetrius Harris. Braunecker likely will enter training camp below all three -- plus Adam Shaheen -- on the depth chart and may have a tough time making the season-opening roster.

June 24, 2020 10:23 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Placed on IR

The Bears placed Braunecker (concussion) on injured reserve Saturday.

Analysis: Braunecker is the third Bears' tight end to land on IR this season. Jesper Horstead and and J.P. Holtz now figure to handle most of the responsibilities at that position going forward, with the former presumably in line for the No. 1 role. Braunecker's season will come to a close with six receptions for 59-yards and one touchdown.

December 14, 2019 12:13 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Won't face Packers

Braunecker (concussion) is ruled out for Sunday's divisional contest against the Packers, Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune reports.

Analysis: Braunecker is still working to progress through the league's protocol for head injuries. He's set to miss a third straight game, leaving Jesper Horsted and J.P. Holds as the top tight ends in Chicago.

December 13, 2019 11:40 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: No practice reps Thursday

Braunecker (concussion) didn't practice Thursday.

Analysis: Braunecker hasn't taken the first step (on-field work) in his journey through the concussion protocol, let alone progress enough to be considered for an evaluation in front of an independent neurologist. Seemingly on pace for a third DNP in a row Sunday at Green Bay, he'll leave tight end in the hands of J.P Holtz and Jesper Horsted.

December 12, 2019 2:47 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Remains sidelined at practice

Braunecker (concussion) was listed as a non-participant on Wednesday's practice report.

Analysis: For the third consecutive week, Braunecker isn't taking the field due to a concussion. With no noticeable progress to date through the protocol, he has no timetable for a return to action. As long as Braunecker is sidelined, expect J.P. Holtz and Jesper Horsted to split TE reps for the Bears.

December 11, 2019 12:06 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Not suiting up Thursday

Braunecker (concussion) has been ruled out for Thursday's game versus the Cowboys.

Analysis: Braunecker emerged from Week 12 with a concussion, which hasn't allowed him to practice in the interim. He'll miss his second consecutive contest as a result, leaving J.P. Holtz, Jesper Horsted, Bradley Sowell and Eric Saubert as the Bears' available tight ends.

December 4, 2019 10:54 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: Sits out another practice

Braunecker (concussion) didn't practice Tuesday, Stacey Dales of NFL Network reports.

Analysis: Braunecker has sat out of every practice since sustaining a concussion during Week 12's win over the Giants, making it unlikely he plays Thursday against the Cowboys. When he's ready to return, though, Braunecker will be the No. 1 tight end since both Trey Burton (calf) and Adam Shaheen are on IR, but J.P. Holtz, Jesper Horstead and Bradley Sowell figure to lead the way until then.

December 3, 2019 11:53 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: Remains in concussion protocol

Braunecker is still in the concussion protocol and didn't practice Monday, Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

Analysis: Braunecker sustained the concussion Week 12 against the Giants and didn't play versus the Lions on Thanksgiving Day. The 25-year-old will have to fully clear the protocol before returning to game action, putting his availability in doubt for Thursday's matchup with Dallas.

December 2, 2019 3:12 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Ruled out for Thursday

Braunecker (concussion) won't play in Thursday's matchup against the Dolphins.

Analysis: Braunecker couldn't recover on the short week after sustaining a concussion during this past Sunday's win over the Giants, as he sat out of each practice. Adam Shaheen (foot) will also be on the shelf, so J.P. Holtz, Jesper Horsted and Bradley Sowell will round out Chicago's tight-end corps. Holtz has been the most-utilized member of the trio during Shaheen's absence, although he's been used in more of a blocking role.

November 27, 2019 11:05 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: Logs another DNP

Braunecker (concussion) was listed as a non-participant in Tuesday's practice.

Analysis: Braunecker sat out a second straight practice after suffering a concussion during Week 12's win over the Giants, and coach Matt Nagy said "it'd be a stretch" for the fourth-year tight end to suit up Thursday against the Lions, according to Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times. With Adam Shaheen (foot) also absent from practice this week, the Bears are preparing to roll out J.P. Holtz, Jesper Horsted and Bradley Sowell at tight end in case neither Braunecker nor Shaheen are cleared in time.

November 26, 2019 1:00 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: DNP due to concussion

Braunecker has been diagnosed with a concussion and was listed as a DNP on Monday's practice estimate.

Analysis: Braunecker got a spot start this past Sunday against the Giants, earning 71 percent of the offensive snaps and turning them into two catches (on four targets) for nine yards. The opportunity arose due to Adam Shaheen's (foot) absence and Trey Burton's (calf) presence on IR, but Braunecker now joins them on the injury report. Braunecker will find it difficult to get through the concussion protocol and play Thursday in Detroit, so the Bears may be down to J.P. Holtz, Jesper Horsted and Bradley Sowell at tight end Week 13.

November 25, 2019 4:32 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Targeted four times

Braunecker caught two passes for nine yards in the Bears' 19-14 victory over the Giants on Sunday.

Analysis: Braunecker dropped a long pass that could've potentially been a touchdown and as a result, he ended up with a quiet performance. On the season, there hasn't been a Bears' tight end to reach 20 yards in a game, making him a weak fantasy option.

November 24, 2019 3:13 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: In line for another start

Braunecker is expected to be the Bears' primary tight end Sunday against the Giants in the absence of Adam Shaheen (foot).

Analysis: A healthy scratch Week 10, Shaheen has been tending to a foot injury in the interim that is forcing a second consecutive DNP this weekend. Meanwhile, Trey Burton (calf) was placed on IR last Saturday, leaving TE reps up for grabs. Braunecker got most of them this past Sunday versus the Rams, earning a 66 percent share of the offensive snaps on his way to one catch (on three targets) for eight yards. After Braunecker, J.P. Holtz (24 percent) and Bradley Sowell (three percent) played much smaller roles.

November 22, 2019 3:33 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Gets the start

Braunecker hauled in one pass for eight yards in the Bears' 17-7 loss to the Rams on Sunday.

Analysis: With Trey Burton (calf) on injured reserve and Adam Shaheen (foot) sidelined, Braunecker had his second-straight start and was targeted three times. With no Chicago tight end posting more than 24 yards in a game, even if Braunecker continues to start, he'll be a low-upside fantasy option.

November 18, 2019 3:01 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: 24-yard performance

Braunecker caught two passes for 24 yards in the Bears' 16-14 victory over the Broncos on Sunday.

Analysis: With Chicago running many formations of multiple tight ends, Braunecker saw three targets while Trey Burton was eased back into line up as he recovers from off-season groin surgery. As Burton sees an increase in playing time, Braunecker will become the Bears third-string tight end which likely won't carry much fantasy value.

September 15, 2019 5:18 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Inks two-year deal with Chicago

Braunecker signed a two-year contract with the Bears on Monday, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports.

Analysis: Braunecker has earned his keep as a special teams player and blocker over his three years with the Bears, but has logged just seven receptions for 83 yards across that stretch. The 25-year-old will play a depth role behind Trey Burton (groin) and Adam Shaheen in 2019.

March 11, 2019 8:39 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: Restricted free agency looms

Braunecker finished the 2018 season with five receptions for 42 yards as the Bears' third-string tight end.

Analysis: Braunecker has posted just 83 yards over this three years with the Bears, and he'll yet to emerge as a fantasy option. He'll be a restricted free agent this offseason, but unless he moves into a situation that allows him to be a full-time player, he won't be a fantasy option in 2019.

January 1, 2019 6:50 AM EST

Ben Braunecker: Catches first pass of season in Sunday win

Braunecker caught one pass for 20 yards in Chicago's 34-22 win over the Lions on Sunday.

Analysis: With Dion Sims missing this game due to a concussion, Braunecker took over the primary blocking tight end role for the Bears and caught his only target of the afternoon. It's unlikely he'll be a consistent fantasy factor because Chicago rarely throws the ball to their tight ends not named Trey Burton.

November 11, 2018 5:17 PM EST

Ben Braunecker: Healthy to enter Week 10

Braunecker (concussion) was a full participant in Wednesday's practice.

Analysis: Braunecker sat out Chicago's win over the Bills in Week 9 due to a concussion, but appears on track to clear the league's concussion protocol and suit up against the Lions on Sunday. If Braunecker is good to go, expect him to receive most of his snaps on special teams.

November 7, 2018 2:47 PM EST

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