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Running back Michael Ford, from Leesville. (Associated Press)<br>

Running back Michael Ford, from Leesville. (Associated Press)

Leesville's Ford survives latest round of cuts with Bears

Last Modified: Friday, August 30, 2013 5:48 PM

By Jim Gazzolo / American Press

Michael Ford appears to have known what he was doing last spring when he left LSU a year early.

The Leesville High product seems to have won a job with the Chicago Bears when the team cut veteran Armando Allen Friday.

Allen was in competition with Ford for the third-string running back spot on the Bears behind Matt Forte and Michael Bush.

Forte, who was born in Lake Charles, is the Bears’ workhorse and Bush is easily the backup. But the third spot was up for grabs when camp started and the undrafted Ford seems to have won the spot.

The Bears cut 17 players Friday to drop their roster number down to 58 with five more spots to go. They have to be down to 53 by Saturday evening.

Ford said all along he was ready to earn his keep and just needed a chance after seeing little playing time over the years at LSU. He backed that up with a strong camp and an impressive preseason.

During the four preseason games, Ford was tied with Forte in rushing yards for the Bears with 149. He also had two touchdowns, one behind Bush in that category.

Ford finished the preseason with 149 yards on 39 carries, including a long run of 27.

Allen, who struggled with a hamstring injury, had 51 yards on 13 carries and did not score.

Ford also showed he could catch the ball, finishing tied with Alshon Jeffery with eight catches. Ford had 65 yards on those grabs.

Where he really turned some heads was on special teams. Ford had a team-high 11 returns for 368 yards, as the Bears saved all-Pro Devin Hester for the regular season.

That included a 100-yard return that didn’t get him in the end zone, as Ford was tackled at the four-yard line.

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