Chicago Bears offensive lineman Kyle Long is arguably the best athlete on the roster. The 27-year-old is in his third NFL season with the Bears and was selected to the Pro Bowl in each of his first two seasons at right tackle.
But this year with a new regime at the helm, the team decided to move Long to right guard just a week before the regular season started.
Long made his debut at right guard against the Green Bay Packers in week one and right away there were some struggles. The struggles were understandable the first few weeks of the season, but Long never really made any progress at the position.
The struggles have really shown during the last two Bears losses as Long was essentially dominated by opposing defensive players. Through 14 games, Long is third among offensive lineman giving up sacks this season with 9.5:
OL w/ most sacks allowed
— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) December 23, 2015
Ouch. That’s not a good stat for your star offensive lineman.
There is some hope for Long at right guard as he will go into next season with a full year of practice at the position. The Bears coaching staff has the chance to teach him the position in the offseason with the goal of better results for next season.
But there’s also the chance Long could move back to right tackle. And offensive coordinator Adam Gase hinted at that last week.
“I know what we have for the next three games, so I know he’s going to be [at right tackle],” Adam Gase said Thursday via ESPN. “We’re going to keep him where he’s at and once we finish this year out, we’ll go back and re-evaluate and see what happens after that.”
With two games remaining, Long’s play will certainly be under the microscope.