Will Jeremiah Ratliff have an effect on rookie Eddie Goldman?
If there is one thing we have learned so far from Eddie Goldman its his idolization for Jay Ratliff.
Rattliff, the 4 time pro bowler has had somewhat of a career revival here in Chicago. After a serious pelvic and hamstring injury in Dallas, he has found himself as one of the main pillars for John Fox’s new 3-4 scheme. With the 7th pick in the 2nd round, the Bears selected massive defensive tackle Eddie Goldman out of Florida State.
Almost immediatley, we heard about his excitement of playing with his idol, Jay Ratliff. The 6’4 336-pound anchor described Ratliff as “My favorite of my generation.” If there was any words Bear fans should love to hear is the role model status an all pro like Ratliff has glowingly recieved from what seems like his future pupil. Goldman described his experiences of holing up in Florida State film rooms digesting everything Ratliff did, and his overall tendancies. Pretty good stuff for the Bears brass to hear and realize the secrets of the position will be shown to a young Goldman looking for a taste of success from his hero.
What Pace and Fox saw in Eddie Goldman makes perfect sense for Vic Fangios revival as coordinator of a team that gave up historically bad numbers the past two seasons on defense. With Fangio comes a new scheme and what better way for the team to start molding their lineup than strong character young guys willing to learn and listen. Goldman is all power and was widely considered the best nose tackle in the draft. Projected originally to be picked in the late 1st round, the Bears were lucky to snag him in the 2nd. A fluid bull-rusher who is stout at the point of the line, he is a perfect fit for the 3-4 scheme. What’s going to be interesting is seeing how Ratliff and Goldman do on the field when paired together.
It seems likely that we’ll be seeing a move of Ratliff to be the versatile transition player where his role will be of both nose tackle and defensive end. The excitement for Bear fans should grow as we move towards training camp and progress towards the season. Seeing a young gun playing with his role model and everything he hasn’t learned already from watching endless hours of tape of Ratliff, will be learned on the field. And that is going to be a scary thought for offensive linemen.