Chicago Sun-Times

Bears get together with Tulane RB Forte

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The Bears got together with Tulane running back Matt Forte on Thursday in New Orleans in a get-to-know-you session. They broke bread, chatted and then broke down film for a couple hours.

With the team having a pressing need to draft an offensive tackle with the 14th overall pick, Forte is among a group of running backs expected to be available when the Bears go on the clock in the second round with the 44th pick. Coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jerry Angelo have discussed the depth the position has in this draft with Smith talking about it Wednesday at the owners meetings in Palm Beach, Fla.

``It’s probably better getting linemen earlier,’’ Smith told reporters at the owners meetings. ``More running backs have turned out later in the draft than have offensive linemen.’’

True enough. But the team that gets off the bus running needs to have someone to hand the ball to.

While Forte might not be exceptional in any one area, he can do everything well and caught more than 100 passes in his college career, making him adept out of the backfield as a receiver. He’s also considered solid in blitz support.

The Bears are not the only team checking him out. Cincinnati sent a representative to New Orleans earlier this week and the Detroit Lions also checked in on him again. Forte has already made an official visit to Detroit. He’s expected to get together with his hometown Saints next week and then make a visit to San Diego April 11.

USA Today names him a guy that’s under the radar. While that might have been the case a month or so ago, his 4.44-second 40-yard dash at the combine and 6-2, 217-pound frame have had teams excited since.

Here’s some video if you want to get a look at him in action.

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Forte seems like a good option that may turn out to be a solid football player. BUT WE DONT NEED SOLID FOOTBALL PLAYERS! WE NEED A GAMEBREAKER. PLEASE DRAFT MENDENHALL. Sure running backs in later rounds have more success than offensive tackles, but this year is arguably the deepest class ever for offensive lineman. We could draft 2 O-lineman with the 2nd round and first 3rd round pick who could come in and play right away. Go QB in the 4th. WE NEED A STAR RUNNINGBACK!

Intriguing, but our first two draft picks should be O-line. Forte won't be around for round three. Right now, no RB would be worth a damn before thats fixed, and beyond the draft, all that's left are scrap heap washout OL.

I like Mendanhall alot too. But in addition to alaskajim's comment (that is dead on) that an RB is no good without an O-Line, it's tough to use a great #14 pick on an RB because 80% of them have a career ending injury in 3 years. The answer seems to be having multiple, decent options and depth versus one Adrian Peterson. Yes Adrian is great but I'll bet this season he's due to miss 8 games.

Few RB's have been like Tiki and reliable 12+ games for 5+ years.

I'd like to see us do O-line in rounds 1 and both 3's. RB in round 2 and maybe a longshot RB later. Also would like to add a safety. But I'd adjust to taking Brohm or Flacco instead of an RB in round 2 if they luckily were still there.

Cant draft Mendenhall if he isnt there at 14.I can see the Panthers drafting Mendenhall if he is there. I had watched some film on Forte and he looks realy good. For a Tall RB he sure can move realy well. It would be nice to see Forte when the Bears pick in the second round.

C'mon people. There are a slew of offensive tackles taken in later rounds that are stars. Our O-line was bad last year I totally agree, but we got rid of the dead weight. We still have an all-pro center and can find comprable talent in the 2nd round. A hometown running back like MENDENHALL would spark the Bears and might make Benson work harder and give the Bears a one-two punch. Just watch that USC game with MENDENHALL and his "inferior offensive line" and see what he did. FILM PEOPLE. Passing on him will be the biggest mistake since 6 teams passed on AP last year.

Wood are you going to cry when Medenhall is drafted by another team. The coaching staff hasnt even gave him a thought. It stinks when your favorite player from college is drafted by another team it happens every year. I thought Brady Quin whould have looked good in a Bears uniform, but hey Brady was to high on the boards for the Bears to land him, just like I think Mendenhall is to be gone before the Bears have a chance to draft him. ohhh well the Bears need O-Line help first.

Forte is another slow RB that has no game breaking ability at the next level. He crushed inferior opponents at Tulane and racked up a bunch of yards. When he gets to the pros, it'll be a lot different.

I'd agree with taking Mendenhall if he's available in the first round. I think taking him we can shore up our RB position for a long time and we can build the OL the rest of the way in the draft.

What really bothers me is that Lovie is telegraphing to the world what the Bears are going to do on draft day. "Getting lineman earlier...blah blah blah..." Thanks for letting all the other teams know that you're going to for sure take an OL at 14. I don't think Lovie is clever enough to put something out there on purpose to mess with everyone's mind. He's a simple guy that doesn't do those types of things.

We'll see what happens on draft day. I predict, Chris Williams or Jeff Otah in the first and Matt Forte in the second round. Which would be a complete and utter boring, unspectacular first day of the draft. Something JA is highly known for when it comes to selecting offense.

I hope mendenhal is off the board or Detroit will be all to happy to draft him at #15. Then we will face peterson and mendenhal 4 times a year maybe 6 but i doubt it. Chris Williams still gets my vote at #14. unless clady falls. Forte should fix the wasted Benson pick but I still like Flacco at two as a developmental Q.B. Maybe we can get botty or Henie with one third pick and a reciever with the other.

O-Line must come first! In a draft where there will likely be SEVERAL good options at RB in Round 2 and even a couple good ones left in Round 3, OT has got to come first.

That said, if Mendenhall is there at #14, perhaps the we can trade down 4 to 6 slots, pickup a late 2nd round or early 3rd round pick (heck, someone might even be daffy enough to trade next year's #1 away) for our troubles, still land a solid OT, and keep the DEE-troit kitties from Mendenhall.

The extra pick could be used for OG, RB, WR, QB. There is nothing wrong with picking up 2 or even 3 OL, or 2 RBs in this draft.


Matt Forte is the running back I would like to see the Bears select on draft saturday not sunday. The reason I say this is because the Bears might want to take Forte in the 2nd because he might not be there in the 3rd. I've been following different college backs since Bensons melt down and to me Forte has seemed to stick out the most. Some question the level of competition Forte faced while at Tulane, I think he went a long way in answering that question by winning MVP at the senior bowl. Also there have been a lot of small school backs that have become good NFL starters.Don't get me wrong, if Jonathan Stewart or Felix Jones slip you take them, but I don't see that happening. Another reason I like Forte is he is a complete back meaning Forte can catch and block. Forte also showcased these skills at the senior bowl. Jamaal Charles is another back said to be on the Bears radar, Charles is fast as in 4.3 fast could bring the big play to the Bears offense. But in the end I don't think Charles is a complete back because on the scouting report for Charles it says Charles is not a willing blocker or a polished receiver out of the backfield and these are skills that are required to be an every down back and that is what the Bears need out of this draft. I just think Forte gives the Bears the best all around prospect. I say in the first take Williams or Otah in this order then in the second take Matt Forte. I would be on the Mendenhall band wagon if the Bears had some decent o-linemen but the fact is they don't. Example, lets say the season started today and the Bears could upgrade only one position running back or tackle would you feel more comfortable with the current running backs or tackles or should I say tackle as in singular as in John Tait being the only legit tackle currently on the roster. I think the answer to this question is clearly tackle so this is why I think the Bears need to address the tackle position in the first and get a good tackle like Chris Williams or Jeff Otah who are first round prospects for a reason then go runner in the second. And Matt Forte should be there in the second and the Bears should nab him up and I think Forte could be special GO BEARS!!

Great story Biggs. Compelling, and rich

Hey the Bears are gonna have a great draft. They've done studies, you know. 60% of the time it works, every time.

I cannot imagine the Bears actually staying at 14, even if Mendenhall or Williams is there. They will trade down as far as they can and get as many picks as they can.

People need to realize one thing about drafting Oline. Most of the time they don't start there first year, they sit. Look at Beekman he was a third round pick and Lovie already said Metcalf is ahead of him and already peciled in Metcalf. Unless you get one of the top, top, talents at Oline you are out of luck. Orlando Pace didn't start the first 3 games for the Rams his first year, niether did Ogden. There is nobody in this draft even close to those guys level of talent. I have not seen a single report from a legit source that says Williams, Clady or Otah should start next year. In fact everything I have seen says they will all need time to develop and learn and none are expected to be great players. Instead they are expected to be solid to very good players once they have developed. Yet I look at these blogs and people think the Bears are just gonna go into the draft and get three top notch starters at the line in three picks. Sorry folks it doesn't work that way and if your the Bears your history of drafting Oline under Angelo has been less than steller.

Angelo in a recent iinterview saif he could not name a single impact player on offense, not on game breaker. There is nobody on this team to build an offense around. This is not a rich left tackle class it is a very good RT class though. It is also deep at guard but not elite at any oline position.

Mendenhall and Stewart are studs you could build an offense around. Williams, Otah and Clady will probably be good players but there is a good chance none of them will start for any team next year as all three lack development. Mendenhall and Stewart could be busts as well, but RB's tend to make a big impact there first year, Oline usually doesn't. Sometimes but not usually. They usually need more time to develop because of timing and the fact that it takes five men to make a good Oline, not 1, 2 or 3 guys.

I like Mendenhall but I would be really happy with a LT who could start and make an impact next year. I just don't think there is a guy like that in this class. Thats why I prefer running back. I also don't like the Bears dropping to get a second round back because they have a bad history of drafting RB's. I prefer more of a sure thing. Forte will probably be gone by the time the Bears pick in the 2nd and I hope they stay away from Rice, who is undersized and does not fit the Bears system.

People can argue all they want Oline vs. RB, but niether are the bears number one need. QB is actually there top need.

Now in a recent article Lovie and Angelo gave basically no confidence to the offense. They also did a lot of double talk. Whoever they pick 1st, QB,RB,WR,OL, it doesn't matter to me if the guy turns out to be real good, but if they pick yet another offensive bust and have another bad draft offensivly Lovie, Angelo and the coaching staff can go.

I can't wait for the draft then all this crazy speculation can be stopped and we can get on to the topic of complaining about the picks.

Sweet Lincoln's mullet.

I'm a man who discovered the wheel and built the Eiffel Tower out of metal and brawn. That's what kind of man I am.

Mendenhall definitely looks like a stud, but I also think there's a lot of risk to him in that the Illini offense doesn't look like anything that's done in the pros. I wonder how he'll look in the Bears offense, where it's no mystery what's coming, as opposed to being in a spread offense where the quarterback reads the defense from the shotgun and has the option of handing off or keeping. I didn't see a lot of Illinois this year, so maybe I'm wrong, but drafting him in the first round would make me real nervous of a possible bust. What do others think?

philbeart- draft two RBs? Not a chance since Wolfe is still on the team and that would leave 5 RBs for 3 positions. Why waste a draft pick on a guy who's probably going to get cut? Here's what I see the Bears doing.

1st- Williams - OT
2nd- Flacco- QB
3rd- Adarius Bowman- WR
3rd- Forte- RB
4th- Chad Rinehart- G

Is there a OT that is ready to come in and start @ indy? Cause that's what we need. Mendenhall can probally play day 1. Draft Oline rnd 2,3,4. They'll need to develop anyhow, seems to me that after Jake Long and Brandon Albert the next 5 to 8 line man are all about the same. all potential, but lacking something. Why draft the 4th or 5th best o lineman @ 14, when we can get the best back in the draft, and no I didn't forget about McFadden. Didn't we take the 5th best QB at number 12 one year? Or the 5th best D end with the 14th pick in 2003 (McNown and Haynes) how did those two turn out? How is Benson's Rehab coming? I don't know how many bell cow backs have metal plates in their legs. I am from Wisconsin with no U of Illinois bias, the guys a stud. how many great backs came after round 1?

What about a guy named Ray Rice from Rutgers? Seem to remember that kid being a total gamer, and the complete package. A proven gamebreaker. All he did was produce every year at Rutgers.....a program that doesn't exactly have that much talent around him. Rice should be available in the 2nd round.....maybe third. I think given an opportunity, he'll be every bit as productive as any other back in this draft. So, if they pass on Mendenhall in the 1st, I sure hope they consider Rice. However, it sure doesn't sound like that's the plan.

I think there are three OTs who can start from day 1 in the first round of this draft. 2 of the 3 will have to start at RT though. Otah and Long are both solid physically, and competent mentally to start on the right side, or the left if you have a lefty QB. Clady and Williams are the 2 true LT prospects in the first round, with Albert being a project on the outside. Williams has shown he is intelligent, mobile, and has a solid reputation pass blocking in the SEC, where Derrick Harvey and other very good pass rushers are coming from this year and in years past. Clady is a low watt bulb, and lacking in strength, but will go early because of his upside. Should not be starting day 1. Williams is capable of stepping in and starting year 1. Will he be a Pro Bowler as a rookie? No chance, but he can be solid. Joe Thomas was a stud, but he would not have been as good without Eric Steinbach next to him. Unfortunately, we don't have any real talent at guard on this team that we know of. Beekman has potential, but we haven't seen anything yet.

Mendenhall, Stewart, McFadden, Jones, Rice, Forte, Johnson, Smith, and a bunch of other backs can come in and start from day 1, but I don't think any will have success without drastically improving the guys up front. Would we be better with Mendenhall than we are with Benson? Everyone seems to think so, but he has only produced for 1 year in college. he has all the skills and traits you look for, but he thrived in a spread offense, which does not always translate to the NFL. I would rather look at a running back who has been solid, with spectacular moments, in a conventional offense. Ray Rice, who will be there in round 2, or Kevin Smith, who might still be there at 70, would be far better to me as long as the pick ahead of them is Chris Williams. And a pick after them has to be a guard (maybe Jeremy Zuttah would be a nice pickup in the 4th, and he is projected as a guard after being a tackle at Rutgers). Do we need upgrades at the skill positions? Absolutely, but none of that matters unless we upgrade at our biggest need position: offensive line.

I am admittedly still a Benson believer, and I think if we improve our line play, he will be a 4 yard per carry back again, like he was in 2006 (as was Thomas Jones ahead of him). We were living on borrowed time with that line group. Fred Miller was already slow, and was never good at blocking speed rushing DEs, but he was healthy in 2006, and could run block very well. But bad ankles and knees don't help a slow pass blocker all that much, so his play dropped off a cliff in 2007. Garza was adequate, but nothing special, and was not strong enough in pass blocking to keep guys like Kevin and Pat Williams, Shaun Rogers, and Corey Williams out of the backfield. Maybe not having an ACL hurts your anchor point. (I recall reading a story saying one of his ACLs was pretty well nonexistent a few years back). Kreutz is a great center, but he can't cover for shortcomings on both sides of him. Ruben Brown was a warrior, and probably our best all around lineman, but he wasn't what he was 5 years ago in Buffalo, and the poor guy was playing most of the season with one arm. not too hard for defenses to figure out how to beat him regularly. Rush to the bad arm side, and blitz him on his strong arm side on a slight delay. He had already turned to use his stronger arm to fend off the lineman, and the blitzing player was having to be either blocked by Kreutz (ignoring the Garza mismatch) or by the back, and that is asking a lot on every pass play. Tait is a solid tackle who can play either side, but he was hindered by bad ankles on both legs in 2007. So it was a combination of average players, injuries, and age all happening to ball up into one flaming failure as an offensive line unit.

We need youth, athleticism, and a rejuvenated mean streak out of this group to improve in 2008. Kreutz is capable of setting the tone for his line (although I would prefer him not to get his usual 15 yard bonehead cheapshot call to do it), and Tait is capable of manning the left or right (would prefer the right, especially since teams we face are solid from the left side of the defense, especially in Aaron Kampmann twice this year), but we need upgrades inside at both guard spots. Beekman might be one of them, but I would not complain to see Zuttah and another player drafted to be our guards of the future.

We do need a running back, but not before we fix what ails us. And that, without question, is the offensive line. If Willams, Otah, and Long are gone at 14 (very likely), we do have a choice to make. We either draft a back, or we move back and hose the Lions. I would rather move back a few spots, and take Albert who can start on the O-line at guard from day 1, and potentially be a tackle as well, and hose the Lions out of the player they want. of course, Millen may screw up the pick, since he is waiting for Mel Kiper to tell him who to pick, but helping ourselves with another 3rd rounder (which can help us trade back into the 2nd, so we would have 2 second rounders and a third after our first pick) and hurting a divisional foe who beat us twice last year makes me happy.

Paul, I'm pretty close to your line of thinking. On the two rb's I just meant the real late picks (post round 5) are kind of lottery tickets and you may grab another back then and see if you get lucky. No question you take Flacco or Brohm if their there in mid round 2. But don't think they will be.

Kewauneewimatt also a fair point that after Long, Albert, and Clady the next half dozen O linemen are about the same

The Bears need O- LIne first and foremost. Right now if the season began today guess who Lovie said would be the Starting Right Guard and Tackle? Metcalf at Right Guard and St Clair at Right Tackle. Is he joking Metcalf and St Clair. I could see maybe St Clair at Guard but not at Tackle and Metcalf blows.

If anyone wants to bet, I have odds that the first play the Bears will run will be my favorite play the false start. This was a repeat it seems like very series the Bears would begin. After that Ron Turner's playbook for 1st and 15 was terrible.

In my opinion, the bears should draft Mendenhall unless Clady is avaible or another top 10 pick falls (i.e Ryan, Ellis, McFadden, Doresy). Although I realize the chances of those players falling are remote, I firmly believe you draft the best available player on your board (please understand there is some common sense to this opinion meaning if a position of need is close you draft that player). The NFL is all about playmakers whether you are a qb, wr or even a LT. It would make me sick to see the Bears pass on Mendenhall, the 6 best prospect according to Mel Kiper of ESPN, and then go ahead a draft a RB in the second round. The gap of all-around ability between Mendenhall and any 2nd round RB prospect is as large as the Mississippi. The talent gap between a Forte, Rice, Charles, Jones (second round prosepects) and any third round pick aren't very far apart.

If the Bears decide to go OL in the first round, then they should go oline in the 2nd with someone like Collins, Rachal, Baker, Nicks etc. really suring up their line. Then they can go a combo of RB/WR/QB with the two picks in the third.

When I look at Mendenhall, I see a class citizen with a huge frame and fast wheels. A very well spoken young man who seems to ALWAYS fall forward when being tackled and acts like he's been there when he scores a touchdown (ala barry sanders handoff td celebration). Plus the guy has the mind and body to pick up blocks and catch the ball out of the back field with ease. He just looks like a player whose body will hold up over the corse of a season.

If you get a RB first round, you will push Benson to be better and maybe, just maybe, Benson will commit himself to the game and create any kind of value for himself so we can trade his sorry rear the first opportunity we can.

I think the Bears can find a quality OL in the 2nd round that can atleast play RT. Tait could suck it up another year, that is what the bears are paying him for.

Moonriver as much as my preference is to take like 3 O linemen in the first 4 rounds, I can't disagree that it is very, very difficult to pass on Mendenhall if he's there. In addition to talent and mentally tough he strikes you as a back who wasn't worn out in college and will stay healthy in the nfl.

Dilemma would be if you took him at 14 and Flacco was available in round 2, we'd be in trouble at O line once again. After Williams and Gosder I dont' know that there's a potential long term left tackle out there.

I saw Forte play in person a couple of of times--and he's good! Stood out like a man among boys. Good size, quick, hits the holes with authority, and brings a load. If the Bears get him they'll be lucky...

Mendenhall won't do a darn thing if the line is not improved.

That's why they need one of the linemen.

Williams, Otah, Clady and Albert will all be in the mix at that first position, and they should take one of them -- I really like Albert.

And has has been stated, there are a ton of RBs that can be had in later rounds.

And while I'll get skewered for this, I'm not ready to say Benson can't contribute in a rotation.

Take a lineman. Then, if one slips, take another linemenn.

Again Creighton

Bad post crappy and poor

You say the Bears have nobody to build the offense around wrong!

Dez Clark
Greg Olsen

4 isnt alot but its more than none.

Give credit where credit is due Creighton. Since 1993-2002 tell me Creighton how many playoff aperience did the Bears have?How many Superbowls did they go to? How many winning seasons did the Bears have in those 10 years? You say Creighdumb that if the Bears dont get it right fire Angelo and Lovie after the 08 season.
Do you know how hard it is for a NFL team to win year in year out.
Alot harder then it is in Madden games.

After a 7-9 season people are going crazy thinking that the Bears are just another team now they had a sub par season. I dont believe it. The Bears still have a Championship Defense, They still have Hester. That should count for atleast 2 wins. Come on people Wanny isnt the coach anymore lets be possitive!

Anonymous, where have you been, I did not say that. Angelo said it, in an article right here on the SunTimes WEB PAGE. He said and I quote:

Lets start with this one by Lovie shall we. ''And defensively we have everyone coming back. We are losing some guys, but our core is in place.''(So are they loosing some guys or is everyone comming back??)

There this one is from Angelo: The Bears had the league's best special teams units the last two seasons, so their problem is not depth. It's front-line talent, particularly at the skill positions, where general manager Jerry Angelo was stumped during his postseason news conference when asked to name the building blocks.

''I can't really sit here and say who do I feel 100 percent about,'' Angelo said. ''You know. Anybody.'' (Well look at that Anonymous, I guess old Creighton had it right?? See thats a quote, son maybe you should read what I wrote a little more cearfully next time. I just repeated what Angelo said and aknowledged he said it is all, which he did. Hey maybe he should ask you you can send him your four picks and know you don't build a team around a center in his 11th season or a guy who is a part time player on offense.)

Here how about another comment from Lovie: Smith conceded he can't name the starting offensive line or identify who will emerge as playmakers.(You want more? Ok)

The Bears have spent virtually the same value of their draft picks under Angelo on offense as defense, yet they are getting much better value on defense. In other words, they won't be merely drafting offense this year -- they will be re-drafting. The wish list includes positions where they already used high picks without getting much payoff, such as wide receiver Bradley, lineman Terrence Metcalf, quarterback Rex Grossman and running back Cedric Benson.

''But these players you talk about offensively, we haven't cut any of them. We still think they are going to come around, hopefully this year.''(Hopefully, hopefully, well thats nice, I don't know a lot of good teams that say they hope there players are gonna be good for a change this year")

Oh and let me address the Tight Ends. You do know the Bears Air Coryell system mainly uses the TE's TO BLOCK.

Smith is a real Genius here are some more comments:

Smith believes that process will be greatly aided by open competition. He said players understand ''you go 7-9, and something isn't right.'' The coach known for declarative statements about the team's quarterbacks said every job is open, regardless of position or how well a player did last year. He went so far as to say Brian Urlacher has to earn his starting spot.

''That has been our philosophy throughout,'' Smith said.

Mike Brown is penciled in as the starting free safety, with competition at strong safety between Brandon McGowan, Kevin Payne, Danieal Manning and Adam Archuleta. Manning isn't a strong safety, but Smith said the positions are virtually interchangeable.(Wait which is it, you have to earn your spot or your penciled in?? Brian has to earn a spot on the team but Brown is penciled in??)

• The Bears didn't consider cutting Benson in the offseason, but Smith admitted this is an important year for the former No. 4 pick. Benson is rehabbing from a broken left leg just above the ankle that required a metal plate and screws. He should return before training camp.(He should return and we all know what a hard worker he is, thats why Lovie asked him to loose weight and get in shape cause he works so hard and that metal plate and those Screws really don't help the fact)

All joking aside, I didn't write that stuff or say it, Angelo and Lovie said it and I repeated it so don't shoot the messenger. Now if you are the GM of a team and you cannot name a single playmaker on offense drafted by you or a free agent you signed or anyone even on the team then yes you should probably be fired. I didn't draft or sign these guys, he did, thats his job. As for Lovie he runs the team and the other coaches are his responablity. They have not been good at there jobs but he is sticking with them. Also Lovie has combined an offense that is real hit or miss and requires a lot of talent to function and is not very good at ball control with a defense that is a modified Tampa two that he calls bend don't break which spends a lot of time on the feild and reduces the offenses chance of getting the ball a lot. When he mixed the two styles most people said it was a bad mix. The offense on this team does not compliment the defense or vice verse. You can be mad at me if you want but I did not make the Bears a bad team last year and did not make the offense bad, without depth and no impact players. These two guys did therefore they are resonsible for the problem. If they don't fix it then good bye.

As for the playoffs, from 93 to 2002 they went twice in 94 and 2001. No Superbowl Wins. How many Superbowl wins under Lovie? Zero as well, there I gave him credit, or do you like loosing the Super Bowl? Winning seasons? From 93 to 2002, 3. Winning seasons under Lovie. From 2003 till now the bears have had 2 winning seasons out of 5. There ok. Here I have a question for you. How many winning seasons did Tampa have with Angelo as head of player personel for 14 years? The Answer is 3. So what Credit do you want me to give. Lovie and the Bears got to the Superbowl and lost, is that what you want me too say, there you go. Or that Angelo has done such a bad job drafting offense that he himself cannot name a single playmaker. There, thats you credit.

It's not about hope man, it's about reality. I can hope to win the lottery but the reality is I probably will not. I can hope for a lot of things, but when someone steps on the field it's not about hope. It's about talent. Don't you think Mike Brown hoped he would not get Hurt again, but that didn't stop it from happening. I have hoped Rex would be a good QB and I have hoped Benson would put it together, but niether has.

Joe good post as usual. Your right there are guys who can start but not at LT. Like you said Long can start but at right, same with Clady and Otah, Williams lacks the power and drive to play RT at this level though. The Bears problem is not RT though it's LT, Tait is gonna start there believe me, I have not seen any expert say anyone in this class could come in and start at LT day one. As for Mendenhall, the Bears do not run a conventional offense, when was the last time we saw a FB lead blocking for the bears??? They Run Air Coryell which is designed to spread the defense. They also mix in the Walsh WCO system with passes out of the backfield. Look I hope Benson is ok, but there is no chance I am hanging my hat on that guy cause even when he was healthy he was a problem, didn't want to sign, wanted to be the starter but didn't want to have to earn it, and he gets injured. I actually really like Stewart too by the way. If Mendenhall is gone I would grab him. While I think there are guys who will be good LT in the league after some development I do not see a franchise type LT in this class or anyone who is even close who the Bears could build a team around, I think Mendenhall and Stewart could be players you build around. Oh if they do draft a LT and start him like Williams, we will know right away if he is good or not. His name is Dwight Freeney, he plays for the Colts and I hear he is pretty good. That will be fun for a new young undeveloped LT. I am sure he won't cry much that night. How many sacks did Joe Thomas a much better OT prospect then anyone in this class give up last year? Joe was what the 3rd pick. We draft at 14 and may take the third or fourth best OT prospect, lets see how did Joe Staley do last year, or Arron Sears? Sears didn't start right?? And Staley started at RT but was only average. Who won Rookie of the year last year?? Was it Thomas who was the Best Olinemen in the class or was it a Running Back taken in the first round with the 7th pick named Peterson. I here Mcfadden is even better than him, and Mendenhall is not far behind Mcfadden. In fact lots of people are really starting to take notice of him after they have seen him on film. Who would you draft if you where the bears a stud running back or an Arron Sears type Olineman??

I'm so sick of hearing the argument that Mendenhall won't do well because he doesn't have a Oline. I don't care if he does or doesn't. Don't pass on a highly rated game changer because our worst position is Oline. There are very comparable Oline that can fall to Chicago in round two and god forbid they trade up to pick up the prospect they need in round 2. You can always patch up the line with FA's that get cut after the draft, try and groom a LT for the year, and try again next year. I just don't want the Bears to reach for Williams or Alberts when there's a surer thing right in front of you at a position of need.

So if we get this "stud" at running back in mendenhall, he can succeed without an offensive line in front of him? I understand you take bet player available, and there are teams that do that no matter what shape they are in, but the simple fact of the matter is that we are a team with a ton of holes. We could improve the running back position with Felix Jones, Mendenhall, Stewart, McFadden, or any other back that we want, but he will be facing non-stop run blitzes and 8-9 man fronts, because we won't be able to keep the defense honest. If our QB cannot get back in his drop, set his feet, and deliver a ball down the field, no running back on earth can succeed. If Williams, Otah, Clady, and Long are gone by the time we pick, we will find out what Jerry's strategy is. He has taken the best player available over the needs of the team, but seems to go back and forth. Tommie Harris followed by Tank Johnson is a perfect example. We had tremendous needs on offense, and it was one of the deepest TE drafts in years, but we went DT back to back. Jerry is a mystery man, and we can only hope he knows what he is going to do on draft day. It is obvious he isn't tipping his hand completely.

The arguments for picking a stud RB in rd 1 make sense, given that none of the available O-Line (unless someone falls) will be anything more than solid, mid-tier NFL types. Don't make a mistake based on drafting purely for the highest need. Mendenhall or Stewart in rd 1 followed by two solid OL picks in rds 2-3 is probably the best plan. I don't believe Benson will play for the Bears this year.

brando, brando, brando....If we had Brady Quinn right now we would be set! Sure he fell to Cleveland, but if Jerry "The Scarecrow" Angelo was as forward thinking as Phil Savage we would be in a position with 3 quarterbacks and a true leader. The Bears could've traded up and taken this kid who will be a future hall of famer. As for Mendenhall, when he is being compared to Barry Sanders after a solid 10 year career in Detroit we will be wondering what couldve been.....He will be available when the Bears select and hopefully Jerry found that brain he was looking for and makes the right decision. Grabs Baker in the second and Rachal in the third.

If, If, If Mendenhall or Stewart are there Angelo's pride and his budget would not allow him to draft either one of them. He has already invested in a first round back and will not do it again until Benson is off his books. Sorry Bear fans but it ain't gonna happen!! Jerry will be looking to trade down and get a second round RB, stop sqwalking about Henne or Flacco aint gonna happen can't take a chance on admitting he blew it with Rex by drafting a QB on the first day. Maybe a O'Donnell, Johnson or Ainge but Booty will not be around when the Bears want to address QB. Get safety out of your mind late second day is when that will go down. We must be realistic as fans who really know the franchise JA will pick a lineman or two of the scrap heap and draft one and go from there. It is past time for the Angelo/Smith regime to move on Lovie's coaching selections have been sorry at best and JA has been rolling more craps than all of Harrah's the last three years in the draft. Until we get into the 21st century with the offense and Lovie finds variations on his defensive schemes we as fans will have to endure mediocrity for some time to come. That really pisses me off because I am a real fan, I pay high prices to be able to see Bears games since I moved to Tenn. and I hate what Angelo is and is not doing over these three years. Instead of building he has been destroying, the worst time he has done is draft Benson, trade Jones and draft like he is the smartest man on the planet can you say Bauzin, Haines, Grossman and Daniel Manning all examples of being inept. He accidently bumped into a SuperBowl team and failed to strengthen it he and Lovie weakened it, with those sissyfied practices at failure to recognize weaknesses and strengths and improving on both, failure to develop anything at all on offense or defense instead took several steps back on both sides of the ball. Failure to recognize Anderson is a special player but not a head up on the most atheletic biggest, strongest guy on the field type of player but one you scheme with and make opposing offenses game plan for him. Failure to recognize Tillman could be a big playmaker at safety but a liability with small quick recievers, D and R Manning are nickel backs someone has to go to the bench or off the team. After the offensive line offended everyone why didn't the Bears develop Beekman, Oakley and Tyler? why is Metcalf still on the roster? why did it take until the 1 year and 13th game for Orton a QB who won ten games as a rookie to get another shot, why did you draft Garrett Wolfe in the third round and have P.J. Pope on the practice squad and don't use him? when the other Backs were not getting the job done, what's wrong at Halas Hall the fish stinks from the head down and this is a complete management screw-up of the largest magnitude. [1] Jerry draft like you have a clue. [2] Lovie pay attention your staff either sucks or is mis-managed by YOU. [3] Have a real practice session. [4] and make a game plan you can adjust. Other than that we'll be all right. Come on Jerry and Lovie we the fans deserve your best if this is you best then we deserve you head on a lance.

Joe and djssr, just cause we all know Angelo isn't going to draft Mendenhall or Stewart doesn't mean he shouldn't. Bears need a LT real bad we all know this but this is not a good LT class by any means, at RT it's very strong but most of the LT's actually project to RT. Like Otah and he is rated above Williams now. This Oline class is a lot like the 1999 Oline class the best OT was Tait but it was considered deep and had a lot of RT's in it.

If we are drafting for need we need a RB just as badley as we need a RT if not more. You could also easily get a solid RT in round 2. There is not a stud LT in this class. If there was he would not be getting picked at 14. Considering there about as hard to find as Pro Bowl QB's.

DJ not only is Met still on the roster he is the peciled in starter at RG along with St.Door mat at RT. Lovies cordinators suck.

You know how I know Angelo won't draft Mendenhall or Stewart, because they are offensive players with talent. I let Angelos record for drafting offense over a 20 year period speak for itself. Really really bad would be a compliment? I would rather see Angelo draft defense then see him waste an entire draft on offensive player I know will suck because he drafted them.

Forte looks like an "up-right" runner. Reminds me of Chris Brown. I guess I wouldn't mind him if they took him in the 3rd round or later.

Creighton....thank you...someone gets what I'm saying!

Moon we hear what you are sayin man the point is MENDENHALL WILL NOT BE THERE!!! What's hard for you to understand Jerry really has no control over the 13 picks ahead of him Mendenhall could possibly be gone before McFadden depending on the team. Stewart could be the one there but I have had a toe prob in my life time it isn't a easy thing to come back from especially in a power back with speed, cuts are hard and some of the playing surfaces could make it worse thats iffy. Smitty he gets small approaching contact I have seen him run in game situations. Creighton good points the Browns got better when they got some O-Line help and a back who could help them with his power making Anderson who is mediocre at best look good. Making a team respect the run makes them a better passing team.

Forget Ray Rice unless we don't have to WASTE a draft pick on him. The guy couldn't outrun LBs in college. What do you think that will translate into on Sundays?

that may be a good choice to do. but i say that if we dont get brohm in the first round then we should get him here if he is available, other wise do what u need 2 do


mendenhall is the next curtis enis

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on April 4, 2008 10:05 AM.

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