Bears line benefiting from continuity

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by The Newsman, Jul 16, 2014.

  1. The Newsman

    The Newsman Veteran SuperFan DBS Writer

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    ChicagoBears.com News:

    When the Bears step on the practice field for the first time next week, they'll do so with the same five offensive linemen that started all 16 games last season.

    Continue reading...
  2. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Bears line benefiting from continuity

    Posted 4 hours ago
    By Larry Mayer
    When the Bears step on the practice field for the first time next week, they'll do so with the same five offensive linemen that started all 16 games last season.


    The following is the fifth of nine position previews in advance of training camp.

    When the Bears step on the practice field for the first time at training camp next week, they'll do so with the same five offensive linemen that started all 16 games last season.

    [​IMG]

    In 2013, the Bears offensive line ranked second in the NFL with 455 points.
    General manager Phil Emery revamped the unit a year ago and it served as a catalyst for a record-breaking offense in 2013.

    Last offseason the Bears signed left tackle Jermon Bushrod[​IMG] and left guard Matt Slauson[​IMG] in free agency and drafted right guard Kyle Long[​IMG] and right tackle Jordan Mills[​IMG].

    The four newcomers gelled quickly with veteran center Roberto Garza[​IMG], ultimately helping the Bears rank second in the NFL with 445 points and set franchise records with 6,109 total yards, 4,450 passing yards, 32 passing touchdowns, a 96.9 passer rating and 344 first downs.
    This offseason the Bears kept the unit intact by re-signing Garza and Slauson.
    "To be able to bring them back again, continue to progress and add to the system is certainly a benefit," said coach Marc Trestman.

    "They're focused on trying to be the best offensive line they can be. They know they can get better. And we've got some new guys in the mix that are competing as well, not necessarily for starting positions but for positions on the team. So it's a positive thing."

    During the offseason, the Bears re-signed top backups Eben Britton[​IMG] and Taylor Boggs[​IMG] and added free agent center/guard Brian de la Puenta, who spent the past three seasons with the Saints, starting all 16 games each of the last two years and 12 of 16 games played in 2011. Britton is especially valuable, having frequently been utilized as a sixth offensive lineman last year.


    The cohesiveness the line developed last season helped the Bears allow only 30 sacks, tied for the fourth fewest in the NFL, and pave the way for Pro Bowl running back Matt Forte[​IMG] to rush for a career-high 1,339 yards, the most by any Bears player other than Hall of Famer Walter Payton.

    Bushrod stabilized the line at the all-important left tackle position. He was selected to the 2013 USA Football All-Fundamentals Team, which honors NFL players who exhibit exemplary techniques for youth players to emulate.

    Slauson was named to USA Today's "All-Joe" team, which honors unsung NFL players who have never been voted to a Pro Bowl.

    One key to the line's success last year was the development of Long, who was voted to the Pro Bowl as a rookie after starting only five games at the Division I level in college.
  3. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Not only do I feel good about that continuity thing which was something that was discussed constantly during Tice tenure as the OL coach and OC but I also feel good about our depth.

    Because the starting five played all 16 games together last year, with just one minor adjustment in the final game when Britton took over for Mills, that should allow us to cycle the backups in for more snaps during the preseason and get them more prepared to fill in if we do have some injuries.

    Expecting that we'll go 16 more games without losing any of the starters is pretty optimistic. I'm just hoping that if it does happen it's not one of those season ending deals. That would really hurt. But in the short run for part of a game or even a game or two having solid backup for all five positions is gonna play an important role in getting to the playoffs and surviving once we get there.

    We already know all to well just how badly this offense can play without a decent OL in front of it so now that the starters have been built in this preseason we need to sort through the prospects and find the best 3 or 4 reserves we can because we may need to use them.
  4. BSBEARS

    BSBEARS Pro-Bowler

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    I like what Mills did last year and hope to see a big improvement. Normally the 2nd year for linemen is a good leap forward. Personally I would still like a road grader at RT but the game has changed and the RT needs to be much better at pass blocking than the old days. Continuity will be key to success, looking forward to seeing the improvements, still hope to get another stud on the line in time, maybe it will be Mills or maybe not.
  5. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    Bears line benefiting from continuity.

    That's good to hear but can Continuity play LT because we need a backup. :4 13 13[1]:

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