Oakland Raiders vs. Chicago Bears: 8|21|10
Following an abysmal outing in their first pre-season game, the Chicago Bears are looking for a jump start of momentum heading into the final stretch of meaningless match-ups.
First off, the main focus of Chicago’s improvement is undoubtedly the offensive line. A move that needs to be made is an insertion of Josh Beekman.
Beekman, a Boston College product, has significantly better legs compared to the seasoned lineman. While not a newcomer, Beekman has constantly improved the rushing attack and brings athleticism. Moreover, the young Beekman has plently left in the tank, starting fewer games. If Chicago wants to run pitch plays or the Power O (the weak-side guard pulls to whichever direction the handoff is, occasionally an H-Back lead is involved,) then Beekman is crucial to success.
Also, Beekman has succeeded in zone blocking attempts as well one-on-one match-ups versus the nose tackle.
Understandably, Mike Tice wants size on his line. That’s not an excuse to keep Beekman out of the lineup, however, as Roberto Garza stands at 6’2″; the same height as Josh Beekman.
Next, the opposite line needs to Bear Down. Julius Peppers, arguably the best defensive end in all of football, needs to prove his worth early on. Mark Anderson and Tommie Harris also need a bounce-back season.
On the ground, Bears’ fans would enjoy seeing more Matt Forte carries, as one play was close to breaking loose for a rather large gain if it weren’t for a missed block by Olin Kreutz. Fundamental mistakes are proving costly for the Monsters of the Midway early on.
Aside from Matt Forte, Chester Taylor should receive some passes from backup quarterbacks and get into a rhythm.
Fullback has been a tough spot for the Bears, as Will Ta’ufo’ou is no Jason McKie. Eddie Williams, former Washington Redskin, is also intriguing in multiple ways.
Williams has outstanding size and strength for a fullback, but possesses natural hands and route running. Seems like a great fit for Martz’s offense, but he may not make the cut.
Finally, the most important and crucial aspect of this year’s off-season.
Major Wright, free safety from Florida, has proven himself in training camp as a leader on the gridiron. His six tackles in limited action were among the Bears’ best in their first game, including an open field slaughter of San Diego Chargers’ tailback Ryan Mathews.
Wright has been compared to Mike Brown constantly, and seems to have taken a liking to his injury prone ways.
Already, Wright has been injured twice. Following a surgery on his finger, it’s doubtful Wright will be in for the rest of the pre-season. However, does this foreshadow the future for young Major Wright?
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