Bears rookie guard Long stands out

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by short faced bear, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. short faced bear

    short faced bear Assistant Head Coach DBS Writer

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    It's evident first-round pick will have significant role

    Dan Pompei
    On the NFL

    7:38 p.m. CDT, July 29, 2013

    BOURBONNAIS — Even if you didn't know much about the Bears and you happened on a practice at Olivet Nazarene University, you probably would ask the person next to you who that No. 75 is.

    He stands out at times because he looks like a boy among men in terms of savvy. But he stands out more because he looks like a man among boys in terms of brute strength.

    Yes, Kyle Long stands out.

    He carries his pads like the first-round pick that he was. And he has become a big presence after just four days.

    Long still is splitting reps at right guard with James Brown, but it already has become pretty evident Long is going to have a very significant role on this team.

    When Long gets it right, he doesn't just block a defender. The son of Howie Long manhandles him. It's something to see.

    "I'm blessed to be a pretty big guy with some strength," he said. "I'm trying to use that to my advantage. It's not necessarily just strength though. It's understanding momentum and leverage."

    Toward that end, Long worked with Jay Glazer of Fox Sports on mixed martial arts fighting techniques in the offseason. Long said it helped with leverage, hip use and stamina.

    "It puts you in position to be ready to go late in drives in football," he said.

    If Long gets beat, it is more likely to be because he is confused or is using poor technique as opposed to being overpowered or out-quicked. He has a ways to go before he has a good grasp of it all.

    "One thing I realized is it's not just blocking, it's who you are blocking," he said. "Everything is moving so fast and there is so much depth to what they are doing on defense. It's very advanced. Just trying to pick up on blitzes and things like that, it's been a learning process."

    That's understandable. Long played only one season at Oregon, and he is far from a fully developed offensive lineman. That's why he has been taken a little aback by the attention to technique that has been demanded of him by offensive line coach Aaron Kromer.

    "I've never had anything like it," Long said. "We went so fast at Oregon, we sacrificed technique for tempo. We wanted to go fast, fast, fast, fast. There wasn't a lot of time to get coached. We had great coaches there, but because of the format of practices, there wasn't a lot of hands-on one-on-one coaching. That's one thing coach Kromer does a great job of."

    Long also feels a little behind because he couldn't work with his teammates during OTAs as a result of an NFL rule which states draft picks and college free agents can't participate in OTAs until after final exams at their schools. He said it "absolutely" has had an effect on him even though he tried to keep up by using Skype to see team meetings.

    During his time away from the team, Long also worked with former Bears offensive line coach Tony Wise and with other linemen at Saddleback College, where he attended before going to Oregon. But it couldn't replicate being in Lake Forest.

    And so Long asks a lot of questions. Of Kromer, of veterans Roberto Garza and Jermon Bushrod, of anyone who looks like they know what they are doing.

    He also takes a lot of reps, probably as many as anyone on the team. With the ones. With the twos. With the threes.

    And he loves it.

    Long appears completely immersed in being a Bear.

    He was the last one off the field Monday. The last one signing autographs. The last one eating lunch. And the last one doing interviews.

    And he was bothered by none of it.

    "I'm playing a game that kids play for fun," he said. "We're blessed enough to be able to get paid. It feels great."

    The Bears are hoping Long's passion for the game, his competitive nature and his work ethic are contagious.

    It's difficult for a rookie to be a leader, but Long is a natural. He understands his place on the team. He shows respect to others. And the way he carries himself demands respect in return.

    The Bears have not chosen a player in the first round with Long's ability to immediately dominate a practice as well as a locker room since they selected safety Mark Carrier 23 years ago.

    Now all Long has to do is show he can bring it on Sundays.


    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sport...0-pompei-bears-long-20130730,0,2292523.column
  2. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Well all of that is the obvious. In 1x1 drills he is manhandling guys, but when it comes to 7x7 and 11x11 those same guys are manhandling him and getting to the RB or QB. It's why James Brown has started w/the 1's every day since camp started.
    Long is completely raw, and he has to learn the position b/c he barely played it in college, and apparently they didn't bother really teaching it at Oregon anyways. Should be interesting how it all works out, no doubt he's in the long term plans b/c When Brown isn't playing RG, he's playing LG w/the 2nd team. So it might well be we have our LG and RG of the future in both of them
  3. kegstand

    kegstand George Halas Staff Member

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    I'm excited to read this.
  4. Bearsinhouston

    Bearsinhouston Hall of Famer

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    He is going to be a VERY good lineman.
  5. zelezo vlk

    zelezo vlk Veteran

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    This guy has all the tools in the world to be a great guard for years to come. It certainly sounds like he's putting in the effort needed to get better. Let's wait a little longer than two days after the pads come on to anoint him the second coming of Carl Nicks/Larry Allen/whoever you style or Chris Williams. In the meantime, we shouldn't forget he isn't exactly going against scrubs in the first team reps; I just hope that he shows up well for the preseason and continues that with a strong regular and (hopefully) postseason.
  6. Bearsinhouston

    Bearsinhouston Hall of Famer

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    I don't think he is going to come out of the chute being a beast, but he will be there in a year or two. I liked the pick. I hope it works out the way I hope. We can use at least one dominant offensive lineman. I hope he is good enough to get on the field this year so he can continue his development.
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  7. mdbearz

    mdbearz Veteran

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    Webb is also a guy that is physically ideal for the position, but I hope Long does not take as much time to get up to speed as Webb.

    BTW, why is he not being looked at as a back-up at tackle.

    The guy is so raw, but it appears that he has the strength and speed, why not give hims a shot at tackle. If Brown is likely to start the season at guard, then give him a few reps at RT.

    I realize that you do not want to hinder his development, but why is he being cornholed as a guard from the get go?
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  8. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    MD, in most O's that would probably be the case, but remember in the Saint's O, the best OL go inside and protect the QB's ability to step into the pocket. It appears that will be the case w/Long playing G. The T's are just there to push everything outside and keep the rush out of that pocket.
  9. mdbearz

    mdbearz Veteran

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    That makes sense, while Jay is a little taller than Drew, a clean pocket to step into is vital for any QBs mechanics.
  10. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    I didn't like the pick at first, but I'm encouraged by what I've heard so far. He's exceptionally strong, athletic, and by all accounts a really dedicated and focussed hard worker (the anti-Webb). It's no surprise that he's struggling a bit in 7-on-7s and 11-on-11s. He's raw technique-wise and learning a new position/scheme. If Kromer could turn late rounders like Evans and Bushrod into pro-bowlers, I think there's a good chance he can do that or more with Long in time.

    I think he will be a noticeably better player by the end of the season than he will be to start.
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  11. motownbear

    motownbear derp daderp daderpidity derp Staff Member Staff Member

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    I too admit I wasnt a fan of this pick at all. But seeing he isnt a softy like Webb and past guys like C Williams is something we really needed. I thought we had that with Carimi but unfortunately he couldnt get over his injury.

    am I the only one that trusts Kromer more then Tice? Tice seemed so arrogant that I really didnt buy into all that guru crap about him. Kromer on the other hand seems low key
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  12. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    Kromer has actually DONE IT. So, yeah I do trust him. And he does have better talent to work with than the shit we've had the last several years (CWill, Omiyale, Rachal, Spencer, etc.)

    I'm not expecting this OL to be awesome but at least competent and improving.
  13. Grizzblue

    Grizzblue Pro-Bowler

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    I completely agree. I will not deny that I was vocal about not liking the gamble we took on him. I have always thought that it was nothing more than a gamble and we certainly can't make a judgement on him in day two of camp. I have been hearing this from multiple sources that he is showing not only the talent and power to stand out, but the work ethic as well. This is very encouraging and it looks MORE likely that Emery's gamble will pay off. We can only wait and see, step one for long is to start taking the job from Brown. Seems that he is gaining ground on him because at the start of camp I read and heard that he was getting very limited first team reps. Just saw on Twitter that its about a 50/50 split now.

    Go get him Long!
  14. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Grizz, he was getting 50-50 from the get go, first day of camp someone commented on just how much time he got w/the 1s and he said it was b/c the team needed tape on him since he had limited college experience and missed OTA'.s
  15. Grizzblue

    Grizzblue Pro-Bowler

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    ah I stand corrected. Its been hard to keep up with the news via radio at work because they still wont get away from the baseball crap. Must have misunderstood.
  16. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    This may be unpopular to say but I did it months ago on the old boards too:

    I'll be shocked if Long isn't starting come September, like it or not.
  17. lklrlolnlilklsox

    lklrlolnlilklsox Position Coach

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    I just want to see this O-line in action. Hopefully, they get increased reps in the PS.
  18. 4dabers

    4dabers Veteran DBS Writer

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    Frankly, if you are going to take an OG in the first round, he had better stand out. I was not enamored with the pick, but the more I learned, the more I got on board, but still, a Guard in the first better be a lock down freakin stud. It's sounding like he might be and then all is good.

    Has anyone heard if Eben Britten has had any time at RT? I'll I'm hearing is how Webb is not looking good and the only options people talk about are Scott and UDFA's. I was just curious to see it this forgotten man could resurrect his career in Chicago.
  19. ChiCityBears

    ChiCityBears Veteran

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    Does Long look a little like Lurch to you?
  20. MPbears68

    MPbears68 Pro-Bowler

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    Somehow I doubt Long was drafted with a view to him being purely a career G. That's just where he's needed now and a good place to start him coming into the NFL with limited college experience. Wouldn't surprise me at all to see Long moved to T a training camp or two from now.
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