Dec 15, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Earl Bennett (80) celebrates after catching a pass in the end zone for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Bears’ Earl Bennett’s older brother passed away

Chicago Bears wide receiver Earl Bennett missed the final game of the regular season against the Green Bay Packers. It was a game that determined who would walk away with the final post-season spot, winner clinching the NFC North.

When I heard that Bennett would miss the game due to personal reasons, I was a bit confused. I wasn’t finding anything about what was going on, but I knew it had to be something serious. And then I found out today.

Prentice Bennett, Earl’s older brother, passed away on December 23rd according to The 35 year old Bennett was diagnosed with N1H1 Flu. Little brother Earl spent the week next to his brother’s side and rejoined the team before they took on the Philadelphia Eagles on the 22nd.

“It was very devastating. This is a guy that I talked to everyday. I would ‘face-time’ him and just call him each and everyday to check on him and to see how he was doing. For me to not be able to call or see him anymore is heartbreaking. I think about him everyday and I talk to him in my prayers.” Earl Bennett via

A death in the family has to be the biggest distraction of them all. I know Earl wanted to help his teammates against the Green Bay Packers, but I’m sure his brothers on that Bears roster understood.

“Every season will be dedicated to him. Every game will be dedicated to him. I’ll figure out some celebration or some way to acknowledge him each and every game for sure.” Bennett via

Earl will be competing against Marquess Wilson during camp for that number three spot on the depth chart.

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