Five Things We Learned: Bears-Chargers

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by riczaj01, Aug 16, 2013.

  1. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/bears/post/_/id/4684726/five-things-we-learned-bears-chargers-2

    Five Things We Learned: Bears-Chargers
    August, 15, 2013
    11:15 PM CT
    By Jeff Dickerson | ESPNChicago.com

    CHICAGO -- Here are five things we learned in the Chicago Bears' 33-28 victory over the San Diego Chargers on Thursday:

    1. Matt Forte pumped life into the offense: After an inauspicious opening drive that lost 18 yards in three plays (two sacks, one negative rush) Forte ignited the offense with a 58-yard run around left end that showcased the tailback's speed, power and elusiveness in the open field. Forte then scored from 3 yards out on the Bears’ final drive of the first quarter, a rare feat for the former Pro Bowler, whom the Bears routinely took out of the game in the red zone in recent years. The bottom line is that for all the talk about the Bears' work-in-progress passing attack, Forte's contributions on the ground are vital to the success of the team. Forte looks to be in the best football shape of his life and there is no reason for the Bears not to use him accordingly.

    2. Brandon Marshall remains the focal point: Jay Cutler attempted five passes Thursday, all five of which went to Marshall. Now, the results were OK, with Marshall catching four of those balls for 38 yards and one touchdown. If Marshall is the only guy open on those plays, then by all means, Cutler needs to fire the ball to his No. 1 wideout. But when the regular season rolls around, it would be nice for the quarterback to spread the ball around, a feat he was not able to accomplish last year for whatever reason. Marshall is a perennial Pro Bowl player. He needs the ball. But even Marshall said in the offseason he felt his hip injury that required offseason surgery was a result of being used too much in 2012. The Bears invested heavily to surround Cutler with better skill position players, and it would likely be in the best interest of the team if he also distributes the ball to them when the real games begin.

    3. Kyle Long is a beast: Long is still learning on the job. There will be bumps in the road for him at right guard his rookie season, but his potential appears to be unlimited. Long absolutely blasted San Diego defensive end Jarius Wynn as he pulled late in the first quarter, a play offensive linemen dream of. Long and fellow rookie right tackle Jordan Mills seemed to do more than simply hold their own against the Chargers. It looked like they won the majority of their matchups, especially in the run game. And I loved the fact the Bears kept the duo in the game into the second half. They need all the reps they can get if the two rookies are going to be ready to begin the regular season in the starting lineup, a proposition that is becoming closer and closer to becoming reality.

    4. Jon Bostic keeps showing up: Once again, Bostic made a few errors in the second preseason game that I'm sure the coaches will address with him during the week leading up to the third preseason game in Oakland. But Bostic made his presence known when he annihilated Chargers wide receiver Mike Willie on a quick slant in the second half. That hit was worthy of NFL Films. The second-round pick is making it more difficult to envision veteran D.J. Williams starting the season at middle linebacker, which was the club's original plan until Williams badly injured his calf early in camp. Unless Williams somehow gets himself back on the field next week and lights the world on fire in the final two preseason games, it's going to be hard for the Bears coaches to send Bostic back to the bench after what he has shown up to this point.

    5. Defensive line produced minus Peppers: Even with Julius Peppers being a late scratch due to coaches' decision, the Bears defensive line made life miserable for San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers. Defensive ends Shea McClellin and Corey Wootton both found ways to get to the quarterback, with McClellin displaying the burst off the edge that general manager Phil Emery described when he selected McClellin at No. 19 overall in the 2012 NFL draft. McClellin still needs to get stronger and is not an every down, hand-in-the-ground pass rusher, but the Bears likely will get creative with the second-year player by asking him to move around the defense and occasionally drop back into coverage. Defensive tackle Nate Collins continued his strong summer by sacking the quarterback in the second quarter, taking advantage of the opportunity presented to him when Pro Bowler Henry Melton suffered a concussion last week in Carolina. Depth on the line could still be an issue, but the starters have flashed quite often during the preseason, a trend the team desperately wants to carry over next month into the regular season.
  2. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    1) Tell me again how Forte cannot run inside or at the goal line? Give him a OL that can make a hole and he can hit it. Does that mean I think he can move a pile, nope not his style he runs to high for it, but he can be a 3-4 down back.

    2) Again I'll take this w/a grain of salt, Marshal got no looks last week so I'll assume(you know what that can do right) that's why and hope that it doesn't happen again next week. Jeffery, Anderson and most importantly MBennett needs to get involved...speaking of our new TE, looked like our old TE on that wiff for a sack; but at least he made up for it by recovering the fumble he created. I will again warn everyone that the reason he failed in Dallas was not Witten, but that he was a flake; last year in a TE friendly system and a contract year he was an AVERAGE TE. I'll be happy w/average, but don't expect a great player out of him.

    3) Just heard on 670 that Long has not looked that good 2 weeks ago in camp, now that was against a bad SD team but that goodness for Kromer, team got a high ceiling (athlete) low basement (raw) guy and Kromer has developped him quickly. Mills a 5th round rookie w/no expectations also looked solid and to be quickly developing. After years of false "guru's" we seem to actually have a couple in Trestman(HC/OC) and Kromer(OC/LC).

    4) Bostic and Greene both had a few good plays, but a few bad ones also, in comes DJ WIlliams if he can get healthy. These guys might be the future, but for the sake of the D, we all better hope Williams get healthy.

    5) Collins looked solid, not many are talking about him but he did look good. Shea was more meh then yay, but he did havea few good plays. The sooner he's off the line the better. He has value, just not as a 3 down DE like Emery thought. Wootton's the real deal though.
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  3. Henry Burris

    Henry Burris Head Coach

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    Agree with everything, especially keeping Williams in over Bostic. I don't see the need, though, to keep Forte in close to the goal line, as Bush has the ideal skill set for that situation.
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  4. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    I'm not saying they won't use Bush that way, but I think it shows that Forte can do both, it creates a lot more versatility for both, and allows Bush to play a more traditional backup role of taking 1-2 full series since he can do and be more then just a goal line back.

    Don't get me wrong, Bostic looks legit, and he's a real thumper but if you get confused in pass pro that can be a deal breaker in the cover 2
  5. Jimmors

    Jimmors The Rhymenoceros Staff Member SuperFan

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    Nobody is claiming he CAN'T run inside, they simply switch him out for Bush when they reach the endzone, mostly because they worked over Forte for most of the drive, so they are simply giving him a breather. At least thats my impression of what they used to do, anyway.
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  6. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    And i have no problem w/ them moving him out if he needs a breather, or if Bush is just a better option which I think he is. But there was a prevailing though in the media and people on this board that he could not do short distance/goal line.
  7. butka

    butka Veteran

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    On another note: Aside from the fact that Cutler was locked on to number 15. Did anyone see that screen to Marshall? I can't remember the last time we ran a screen that didn't take 12.9 seconds to develop. It's as if Trestman understands that it's ok to gain 4-8 yards on a screen and it doesn't have to be a boom or bust, take it to the house or lose 5 yards type of a deal. It was crisp, we got the ball to the line of scrimmage almost as quickly as a dive play, and I couldn't think of a better receiver to get the most out of it. Well done.
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  8. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    ya outside the first first drive or so, the 1's actually looked okay on moving the ball.
  9. Blue Horse-shoe

    Blue Horse-shoe Veteran

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    Just seeing more REAL holes for Forte to run thru .... and some different looking plays coming from this O ( of which I'm sure theres more to come ) has given me some hope that this could be a good season . Make no mistake - Long and Mills are playing aggressive and hungry . The second level blocks are a relief to see cuz we haven't seen much of that for YEARS . That , in and of itself , is an undeniable improvement . Let em play and develop . I'll take the the inevitable rookie mistakes in exchange for the eventual solid solid play we're gonna get outta these guys . F the quick fix crap . Lets develop a couple new , YOUNG ENERGETIC guys , who will prove to be beneficial to this team for many years to come . DO iT ! DONT HIT THE PANIC BUTTON and revert to the same old mediocre BS that the the J'Farkus's of the world represent .
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  10. Akuma2000

    Akuma2000 Veteran SuperFan

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    I think we're gonna see a lot of screens this season, mostly because we have a better O-line to do it more consistently compared to previous seasons when the play got blew up behind the LOS resulting in loss of downs and yards etc...
  11. soulman

    soulman Pro-Bowler SuperFan DBS Writer

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    The zone scheme is opening inside lanes for Forte that seldom existed before and he's running with more forward lean and leg drive this year than he has in the past. The observations about him in the past weren't inaccurate but he's turning himself into a more complete back as a runner than he's ever been before. He's maturing and hitting his prime now.

    But Bush is an absolute tank as a runner. Every run he's carrying tacklers and pushing the pile another two or three yards beyond where a lesser back would be stopped. With his size, his strength, and his running style he'll still end up being a more efficient short yardage guy than Forte and we need that. Forte is still gonna get the majority of the carries but Bush is a back you can really wear a defense out with. How often do you ever see the guy lose yardage on a carry.
  12. BorisBear

    BorisBear Rookie

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    Yes! I was very happy to see the defensive line make some mean plays without Peppers out there. I was especially happy at McClellen's forced turnover and Collins' suffocating sack.
  13. tbear1

    tbear1 Veteran

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    6. Rivers is a cry baby.
  14. tbear1

    tbear1 Veteran

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    I am surprised at how well Bostic has been doing as a rookie. He needs some coaching on pass coverage. There was at least one touchdown in the first game that was due to his missing coverage. It's pre-season there is time to work on it. I am not ready to release Williams yet.
  15. BorisBear

    BorisBear Rookie

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    It will be handy to keep a savvy vet like Williams around for safe keeping and to tutor Bostic.
  16. riczaj01

    riczaj01 DaBears Ditka DBS Writer

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    Heard some guys on the radio talking about it, they said if DJ cannot get back this week then it's probably not going to be his job to start week 1, but once he's back, depending on Bostic's play, he might get it back.

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