Bears focusing on protection problems
Bears focusing on protection problems
Bears continuing to address pass protection issues -- ChicagoBears.com senior writer Larry Mayer sits down with general manager Jerry Angelo to discuss the most pressing issues involving the Bears every Wednesday. This unique feature will provide you with inside information directly from Jerry that you can't get anywhere else.
LM: With the Bears allowing six more sacks in Sunday's loss to the Seahawks, how concerned are you that pass protection will remain a problem?
JA: 'I'm concerned because ... we didn't protect the quarterback. We're no different than any offense; if you don't do that, you can't maximize your scheme. With new players in new positions, I knew we were going to see some pressure, but we had too much of it. Until you see them out there playing, it's hard to say before the game what you can and can't do. It's something that we'll spend a lot of time addressing this week, but just getting the same five offensive linemen playing together will help us.'
LM: How confident are you that creating some continuity will help the offensive line?
JA: 'I know that's going to improve the line; it's a fact. How confident am I that it's going to come together right away? I can't sit here and tell you that. But you can't evaluate players until you're in the heat of battle, and now that we know them better, we understand more of what they can handle mentally and physically. That's when you start making progress."
Chris Williams started at left guard for the first time in his ... three-year career last Sunday.
LM: Are the Bears better with Chris Williams at tackle or guard?
JA: 'It's not about Chris Williams, it's about getting our best five players right now on the field. That's the bottom line. Keeping Frank [Omiyale] at tackle and Chris at guard is the better combination in our opinion, and that's why we're doing it. And that's what you have to look at. It's the combination of having the five best that matters most.'
LM: Is playing Williams at guard a long-term situation or is it more fluid where you see him moving back to tackle eventually?
JA: 'Right now it's week to week. Personally, I don't care where he plays as long as it makes us the best we can be now and going forward. I can't look at anything other than this week, and then we will determine the report card after this game and what we're going to do the following week. It's been tough because we've had injuries that have created the situation that we're going through. It's tough on any offensive line whether you have young guys or veterans. It's up to us to fix it and get better now.'
LM: There's been a lot of talk about needing more balance on offense. Do you think the Bears need to run the ball more or just run it more effectively?
JA: 'Here's what you don't want on offense: You don't want to be too predictable. If the defense knows when you're going to throw or run, you make it easier on them and tougher on yourself. You can't be predictable with balance; you're less predictable. It doesn't matter if you favor a higher run-to-pass or pass-to-run ratio. That's irrelevant to me. What is relevant is moving the chains, not committing oin turnovers, protecting the quarterback and getting the ball in the end zone. And the easiest way to do it is with balance. The goal is to dictate the pace of the game and make the defense defend the whole field.'
LM: The NFL has said that it may suspend players for helmet-to-helmet hits after a couple of nasty collisions in last weekend's ... games. What do you think about the issue?
JA: 'I personally think you should never be able to hit a player in the head. There are going to be times unintentionally when it's going to happen. I get that. To me that's not a fine or a penalty. But when you intentionally hit a player in the head—and I think we can all see intent—I think that's wrong."