Chicago Sun-Times

Bears Need Production From Young Ends

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The business of football marches on in the wake of Gaines Adams' tragic death Sunday.

That means the Bears will soon start making plans to replace a player they hoped would make a major impact on what has been a mediocre defensive line of late.

It means Alex Brown, Jarron Gilbert, Henry Milton and Mark Anderson are going to have to play a lot better next season or the Bears are going to be in trouble.

Coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jerry Angelo keep insisting that this core group of players will perform better even while continuing to play in the same system. It's a tough sell, especially after the Bears have gone 23-25 since Super Bowl XLI.

Well, now more than ever is their chance to prove it, especially on defense, because without a first- or second-round pick it will be difficult to greatly improve the roster.

All trades are final in the NFL, just so you know. The Bears sent a second-round draft pick to the Buccaneers in October in return for Adams, who was first defensive player (fourth overall) in the 2007 draft. Although the NFL has certain rules regarding tragedies, and this certainly qualifies --- Adams was 26 and appeared to be a picture of health --- there is no rule that would allow Angelo to reclaim the second-round draft pick or receive a compensatory pick.

Going the free agent route is a possibility. Julius Peppers would be a great addition, but would also cost a fortune and is now over 30. He has also indicated that he would like to remain with Carolina. Stealing Aaron Kampman or Johnny Jolly from the Packers makes sense, although Kampman is damaged goods after tearing his ACL late in the season and Jolly is more of a tackle. Kyle Vanden Bosch isn't as disruptive as he was earlier in his career but might also be a fit.

They could even bring back Adewale Ogunleye, who is an unrestricted free agent and therefore able to sign with any team. He had six sacks before breaking his leg in the third-to-last game of the season, which trailed only Brown's 7.5. Ogunleye is a good guy and clubhouse leader, but will be 33 next season and the defensive line has failed to generate a consistent rush with he and Brown as fixtures at the end positions during the past three seasons.

Ogunleye said his chances of coming back were "50-50," which might have been generous before Adams' passing.

Melton was a fourth round pick who moved from running back to defensive end while at Texas. He spent his entire rookie season on injured reserve and remains an unknown. Gilbert is an athletically gifted but raw player who saw only a little playing time at the end of the season.

Israel Idonije can play end but played tackle almost exclusively last season and had his best year.

Anderson remains an enigma. He had 12 sacks as a rookie in 2006 but has only 9.5 since. New defensive line coach Rod Marinelli was supposed to light a fire under Anderson, and in some ways he did. Anderson had his best season since his rookie year, but that's not saying much since the guy vanished in 2007 and '08.

A restricted free agent, Anderson is expected to return to the Bears next season.

Even if the Bears are able to land a big name defensive end in free agency, they're still going to need players on the current roster to greatly improve if they hope to generate the kind of pass rush that can make Smith's cover-two scheme work.



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27 Comments

This much is certain. The Tampa 2 does not work without a pass rush. If they don't have an in house solution, going after Peppers or Kampman makes a lot of sense, no matter the risks.

But hopefully, Anderson can regain his form, especially next to a healthier Tommie Harris.

What, what do you mean more production? Rod Marinelli or should I call him Rod Tice or Mike Marinelli fixed everything. No one could stop our pass rush Lovie is the greatest ever and the Bears are undefeated under him. Six Super Bowl titles under Smith. Best ever, everything is perfect and the team rules.

Can't wait to watch the bears dominate next Sunday. Now all of you just shutup and cheer for the team, you loosers just don't get it. My Bears are super awesome. It doesn't matter if the ywin or loose, thats not what football is about. Its about buying the merchandise and paying to much for tickets. Now get out there and spend your money on the Bears. If you were real fans like I am you would just give them your paychecks and shutup. But you can't cheer for them anyway cause they are my Bears, so shutup and be my friend. Do you guys like Golf?

WE LOST BUT WE WON, Oooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh YEAH!

Wait, What just happened. Oh man sorry guys, I think I have been over exposed to the board Tards. Some form of Tard contamination must of slipped in. Now I know how it feels to be Brando, and it doesn't feel good.

Hayes do we really need more production from the line? Really? Hahahah, just kidding.

Once again, a very intelligent post by Mr. Creighton =(

By ldc on January 18, 2010 4:48 PM
"This much is certain. The Tampa 2 does not work without a pass rush."

Noooooooo....really???????

"But hopefully, Anderson can regain his form, especially next to a healthier Tommie Harris."

This is going to be the 4th straight year fans have been "hoping" for Anderson to play like he did his rookie year and for Harris to be healthy. Sometimes I feel ashamed to be a Bears fan.

People blast Creighton for being negative all the time, and I've probably been guilty of that myself, but since I've been coming here after the '06 season the C-man has been like 98.5% right. This team is a joke. The people running it are a joke. That cardboard cutout who stands on the sidelines and throws challenge flags every once in awhile is a joke.

I mean, how many franchises would have stuck with Smith after three years of mediocre to bad football? Two maybe? (Lions, Bengals?)

I like the idea of bringing Aaron Kampman in, but with the torn ACL, he probably wouldn't do the Bears any good next season, and this is when they need the help, next season, not down the road. Lovie and co gotta win NOW.

Angelo needs to go after the other Packer end, Johnny Jolly. Jolly is probably a better fit in a 4-3, and has only been in the league since 2006. With only a 3rd rounder, Angelo is not gonna find an end in the draft. He needs to go after Jolly.

The Bears are probably gonna have to use Jarron Gilbert at end if they don't go after a free agent end like Jolly, but I still think Gilbert would be a better fit at the three technique inside vs outside as an edge rusher. Its hard for me to believe Gilbert would make a better end in the NFL when he was clearly better inside in college. Again, at San Jose st he was a better tackle than he was an end, it's just doesn't make sense that now at the next level he's all of the sudden a better edge rusher. The guy had 22 tackles for loss inside in college as a senior, this is where he would probably be a better fit in the pros also. I say sign Johnny Jolly and move Jarron Gilbert inside. Chicago's front would probably be more effective with a combo of Tommie Harris and Jarron Gilbert at the three technique. With two bodies at the position, they'll probably get better play at the position, there by making the defense more effective. Bad play at the three technique is a major reason Chicago's defense has been so bad as of late. Just an opinion.


Neil Hayes, I like the Sun Times, you guys have probably the best coverage on the Bears out there. I also believe in freedom of the press just as much as the next guy. But that picture of Gaines Adam's body being wheeled into the hospital on your guy's web page is going a little overboard. You gotta realize Gaines Adams is a person, thats someones baby boy your showing in that picture. I say give his family some privacy and take it off, again, just an opinion. As always GO BEARS!!

Mike Nolan is available after another stupid move by that idiot coach in Denver.
If Jerry had any brains he would tell Lovie that this is the guy that is going to run the defense and the Bears are going to the 3-4 weather he likes it or not.

Their personal is better suited for it and the Cover-2 has run its course.
Anderson becomes a pass rushing OLB. The biggest strength of the Bears defense is their linebackers and they all would fit into the 3-4 style of play.
This takes the pressure off of their already aging D line with guys like Brown and Ogunleye.

Mike: I think IDC was still drinking when he made that post....LOL....We all know that no defense works with out a pass rush a Tampa 2, The Stesl Curtain, The Ravens 3-4, etc.
This weekend really put a damper in the teams plans for sure, but until we sign some coordinators we are not sure what we might have to work with next season. another note to think about is mattias Kiwanuka with the Giants who had another disappointing year and will be available to bring in next season, he might not cost a high pick or a lot of money either....

Neal I under stand the point about trades being non-voidable in the NFL, but what about salary cap relief, how does his passing factor in there?..

Side note May Gaines RIP, and his family find some comfort in the world after this cruel loss...

Me again, I'm back because I put my foot in my mouth with my last comment on Packers DE Johnny Jolly. I read the comment by Hayes and made a quick comment before doing my homework on Jolly. I knew Jolly played end this year, and has been in the league since 2006, but, Jolly is probably not a good option for the Bears free agent wise. The Bears need an end in their 4-3 defense, the 6-3 320lb Jolly is actually a better TACKLE in a 4-3. In the Packers 3-4, he plays the blocker-eating left end position. Again, in Chicago he would be a tackle, not an end. So he's probably not a free agent option, the Bears need an end. All Angelo can do is go after Peppers, or resign Ogunleye, theres really not anything out there other than Peppers/Ogunleye. The Bears are simply gonna have to get better play from their current ends, Brown, Anderson, Gilbert, Melton, and the free agent they go after, if any. It should be interesting either way GO BEARS!!

Creighton i would learn how to spell before calling people tards if i were you.

With Mike Nolan as DC and Mike Leach as OC, the Bears could compete.

Good to see the old Creighton again. It was just too much wasnt it.. trying to be decent to people. The great creighton knows all and we know nothing. Creighton, when Mark Anderson was given the starting nod in '07, his run D was awful. As it was in '08. This past season, he was one of the most active players against the run. If he wasnt in on the tackle, he was creating havoc around it. Marinelli was able to get him to be a solid anchor against the run. Give some credit please. In your book, every player, coach and scheme sucks. Since we are all fans here, we have no choice but try and move on. Is Lovie an idiot...yep as is JA, but your rant on Tice is 100% BS. Bringing in guys like Tice is a great idea. Tice is his own person. He will not be a yes man. He will jump in with both feet and chew some a$$ with that OL. So enough of the meaningless stats to support your love affair with yourself. Its doubtful this team makes the playoffs this coming year, but with the new blood coming in with the coaches..its a damn good start.

you guys do know that ends are for pass rushing and containment right? They virtually have nothing to do with the run d except for containment. Apparently you don't know that, so that's why I say shut
up and cheer. It will make you look much more intelligent.
You maybe not be familiar with just exactly how good our linebackers are,because we did not see too much of them this year.
Let me just explain what a huge addition Pisa Tinoisamoa is/ could be.
He is a tackling machine. He just does not screw up. If he wasn't with
the Rams, he would have been a perennial pro bowler. Alas, he got hurt
several times, and that makes him a bust so far. Brian Urlacher? Well, we all know about him. I was impressed with Hillemyer, even though I have never been a fan of him. This is your run D right here....let's hope they stay healthy...because a good run d will make the pass rush that much better. I really love Alfalava. There is so much to look forward to this year. I thought I was excited last year.....give Lovie a chance to finish developing this d. I am sure
you will not be disappointed...do not miss out on the very special thing that is happening here. Do not spout in misery, or you will miss it. The Bears are in very good hands.

Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Bearssssssssssssszzzzzzzzzzz

I think the bears need to just follow the league trends and switch too 3-4. I think it will benefit Mark Anderson, briggs and Urlacher. All they have to do is find maybe a veteran to play the nose. Plus Urlacher and Briggs are pretty good blizters

I think Vandenbosch would fit in well in Chicago

Stuckinwisconsin,
In most defenses, the ends are responsible for nothing more than contain and pass rush. On our defense, Brown blows contain at least half the time by crashing down the line on inside run action, and Ogunleye rushed too far upfield and lost contain by over-running the play. The application of the scheme is terrible here, and needs to be improved. Anderson did much better against the run because he learned to diagnose plays faster. Engage, diagnose, and react rather than react, diagnose, and chase is the difference.

This defense is designed to funnel most of the plays to the weak side backer, and Lance has gone to several consecutive Pro Bowls because of this. But the defensive line does not get pass rush pressure consistently, which stems from inside and outside problems. We need better performance at all 4 positions on the DL, and anything short of dramatic improvement will spell disaster for our D next season.

Pisa is an un-neccessary luxury for this defense. If you look at the Colts, and at Tampa over the years, linebackers have been pretty well interchangeable parts. Brooks was the only constant in Tampa's LB corps, and Indy has been changing guys out pretty frequently. Brackett is an undersized MLB, where we keep hearing you need a bigger player to defend the middle of the field in this base scheme. Roach, Williams, and Hillenmeyer are all good enough to be 2 down linebackers, so why count on a guy who has been injured in most of his recent years? We go nickel almost half the time these days, so the SLB comes off the field in those situations. I would rather devote the roster spot to defensive line or secondary than another linebacker.

Jarron Gilbert, Henry Melton and Mark Anderson... ouch, that's a whole lot of bad. And Alex Brown is a better run stopper than pass rusher. What the heck has the Bears' front office been doing the last half-decade??

DO SOMETHING! And I'm talking to the front office, not the players. Although the players need to do something, too.

Earn your paychecks, Jerry and the scouting department!

if urlacher and briggs and pisa stay healthy that is not a shabby group.. what they need is a bit of a twist on the tampa 2 and a ball hawking safety hitter like palamalu who can blitz every now and then
heres hoping those mugs take up yoga like ray lewis does or do whatever it tskes to stay healthy next season!!!

I agree big time with Pisa stuck! He looked awsome, and worth the risk of the inj. bug. Maybe true about cover 2 LB's but lets be for real, some LB's are just plain more athletic and have better instincts than others which Pisa has.

As far as our other Ends, it's no wonder why JA traded for Gaines, the Coaches don't like the Ends we have now, so yes we need another End I feel. I am sick of Goon halfa$$ it through the season. So..
OG
DE

Johnny Jolly is a DT, Not a cover 2 end he is 6-3 325, you experts must not watch much football.

1990, thats right Creighton is back. "Give some credit to Mark Anderson" Thats your claim, that Anderson is playing well. Really? You think he is playing well. You also think the reason he was benched was because he was bad against the run. Well considering most of the time he is on the field it is a third and long passing situation and Anderson is rushing the passer, I would say he pretty much sucks at his job. The Bears ranked 23rd in run defense, oh boy he was awesome.

The guy is put in ideal situations for him to rush the passer, which is his job, and he sucks at it. He played the run well?? No! Anthony Adams played the run well, Lance Briggs played the run well, everyone else on the defense played the run like garbage. Why do you think teams continue to run at Anderson. Hey he tackled him for a short gain of 9 yards way to go Anderson. Wow he improved his run defense from horrible to bad. Wow.

As for me saying all coaches suck. Not sure where got that from. I said the Bears coaches suck. They have fired 18 team of them as proof, or did they fire them becuase they have done such a great job? I talk about great coaches all the time that I would like to see in Chicago. The Bears just don't hire them. They hire their guys, for like a year and then they fire them, cause they are so happy with them. Oh and that Lovie has done a great job, thats why he is on the hot seat, thats why they had to have a press confrence to say they have been doing a bad job. Lovie, Angelo, and Phillips all came out and said they have been bad. So at least they agree with me.

But no your right, they have done such a great job thats why the team has looked so good.

Now as for me being a decent guy. Well lets take a lok at some posts.

I said this.
"I don't think Tice is one of the best coaches in the league"

This was the reply
By estevenj on January 17, 2010 8:27 PM
Creighton, you're a tool.

And this

By stuckinwisconsin on January 17, 2010 1:25 AM
"The Bears know what is best for the Bears. Nuff said. Now...........Shut up and cheer."

But I am the rude one. I get jumped all the time because I take a stand and on a board that asks for peoples opinion, I give mine honestly. Which is more than I can say for most of you. I post as me and I stand behind what I say right or wrong. I never have attacked anyone on this board who didn't attack me first. I always said if you don't like my opinion, don't read what I write. But some of you hate what I say, yet you continue to read what I write. That the actual definition of insanity. I am not some chicken s### who runs around changing his name every other week, like so many on this board because you have stuck your foot in your mouth and refuse to stand behind what you say.

Like me or hate me, I write what I write. Some of you consider the guy that used to run this board a good writer. Lots of you were fans of his and me and Brad butten heads many times, but you never heard him complain about me like you little girls do. No you see Brad actually liked me, he liked what I wrote. I know this because he still sends me emails.

Be mad all you want, but that won't make the Bears better and won't change the fact that I have been right about them. Same thing happened last year over Marinelli.

By stuckinwisconsin on January 18, 2010 11:06 PM
"This is your run D right here....let's hope they stay healthy...because a good run d will make the pass rush that much better. I really love Alfalava. There is so much to look forward to this year. I thought I was excited last year.....give Lovie a chance to finish developing this d. I am sure you will not be disappointed...do not miss out on the very special thing that is happening here. Do not spout in misery, or you will miss it. The Bears are in very good hands."

So you were excited for this defense last year. How did that turn out for you?
"The Very special thing that is happening here"
What special thing would that be?

"give Lovie a chance to finish developing this d."
How long does it take Lovie to develop a D? He has had the same defense for 6 years. Its a veteran defense, with a 30 year old scheme what exactly is he developing. What has been so special about this dense. Your basically saying you are going to win the lottery because you want to. You are insane.

"The Bears are in very good hands"

Well they have been in the same hands the last 3 years, where are the Super Bowl rings.

Give an example of this greatness you speak of. Please give at least one actual spacific in your post.

By the way StuckinWizzzzz and 1990, for two guys who have all of 3 combined posts in the history of inside the Bears, you sure seem to know a lot about my posts. Hmmmmmmmmmmmm, could it be that you changed your name once again because you are to embarrased to post under your original screen name. Gosh I wonder who it could be?

As for the line, yes it needs to improve. No Harris will not be 100% next year. Yes Brown will be a year older and continue to struggle with gap control. No Anderson is not a good player. Yes they will continue to struggle in the pass rush. No Angelo will not get Peppers. Yes he will look in the bargin bin and see if he can find an older player comming off an injury. Yes Goon will probably return. No Gilbert will not have breakout year. Yes Henery Melton will ride bench.

Here is a question for Bears fans that no a little something about football. Does Marcus Harrison remind anyone else of Jolly? He looks like he should be a good DT, but isn't. I wonder how Harrison would do in a 3-4, playing end?


You're all kidding yourselves. Do not even waste your time thinking about this team as it exists right now; it's like thinking about how great and sexy your wife was when you met her. Them days are over, over, over. This is the worst roster top-to-bottom in the NFL, with the worst coaching staff (well, that is in place so far) and the worst front office perhaps in history. Jerry Angelo began his career here forgetting to check the box on Warrick Holdman and has lately continued his stellar string of absolute failures by forgetting to check the heart of a far-too-skinny and unskilled young athlete whom he deemed worth the 40th overall pick in what will surely be the deepest and most motivated draft pool in history. What else is there to say? Drink, drink, drink, and I'll wake you in 2012 for the first season of the all-new NFL.

Its all about presentation Creighton. How you come across.. Taking a stand and ripping people are two different things. I agree that the team needs alot of help right now. And if you would have read my post, all I talked about regarding Anderson was his development as a run stopper. His sack total fell way off. Anderson was a better over all player this past season. He did a lot to help pressure the pocket. And since I have only posted a few times, that makes me less of a fan.. have less knowledge?? You make my point with that statement. And if I remember correctly, your idiotic ranting last year had most of the bloggers po'd. Oh well, we know nothing because you can dig up some useless stats? We know nothing because you have all the info? The point of this blog is just throw our opinions against the wall. Its a great blog.. but when you stand on your little box and preach that you have all the football knowledge and we know zero.. it makes you look like a 4 year old.

I do know that we have all been asking for a top DE for quite awhile, same with Olinemen. How anyone in their right mind could even consider being excited next year is just looney tunes. I am sick of waiting for next year stuck, I (we) have been saying/hearing that for decades dude. Decades. Thats a long freakin time Mister. Look at 2006 our one SB (loose) then what did the bears do? freakin sat on the Oline till they werent even worth replacing, got rid of the D Coach that took us to the SB, spent all their draft choices on D players that werent worth didley, hada trade the only QB we had that worth anything, and how many RB's did Jerry go through to find the one year wonder in Forte? Call it like it is man, this franchise sux.
Now the good news;
We have Cutler a former Pro Bowl QB (untill he came to the bears) We have a former ProBowl MLB in Url, that wont ever get back cause his time is gone like most of the players Jerry didnt replace,
We have Forte who didnt look good at all his second year, does not bode well for next year either btw.
We have a brand spankin new D Coach (well eventually) we have an enitire new O Coach staff, (well eventually) This stuuupid franchise couldnt even stay par after the SB loss, just did not replace the !@# players with any talent at all, and dint even hire good Coachs. dang, that is just not good people. But lets all get real excited for next year cause next year will; be different for real.

If it werent for posters like Kevin I would REALLY be mad :P

doh bears

Creighton, First first of all, your udder disrespect for people by giving them your own'personal' pet names, clearly shows that you are shameless in your irrational world. You have yet to
post without attacking anyone, regardless of your fallacious claims.
I am from Full court Press...RIP....where the moderator/head blogger
was more than just an Asian dude with a white boy name(will this finally get a response out of you Sean or Neil?). They actually participated and kept
enough control so that is was not overrun by mo-rons like you Creighton. I have previously posted(sparingly) in this blog, but I can't stand Brad Biggs(and captcha is annoying), and now that he is gone, as well as FCP, I am here
to stay. Get used to it. THE BEARS ARE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE:
a classy organization that weathers the storm of what many believe,
quite possibly the dumbest media in all the land. If you want a place to print the garbage that spews from your life of accumulated
failures, then do what the other knuckleheads do: Get a billboard.
Real fans unite in cheer and pride, without the ridicule of their
peers. Enough with the jeers, and bring on the cheers.

goooooooooooooooooooooooo bbbbbbbbbbbbbeearssssssssszzzzzz.


hello FCP alum in here. Bculz,WRD,Paul Manter,Philtration, Anonymous, and the wisest of all, IDC. Feel free to rip on me.

that last anonymous, was me...sorry...

The first 4 games of the season the D-Ends were fantastic until the league realized that all they had to do was go max-protect & the small Bears D-Linemen couldn't bull rush past a red cape. I think the problem here is more the Lovie/Angelo "Speed Kills" philosophy of getting fast, undersized players at all positions. As soon as these guys get old or injured they become undersized slow guys & are swallowed up by the average & above-average sized players of other teams. It's why we can't get to the QB & also why the running game has been awful for years now. Part of the reason Anthony Adams was the best D-Lineman of '09 is because he's the widest body out there. And oh yeah, "Note To Bears Staff: Devin Aromashodu is NOT a big wideout, he's an AVERAGE sized reciever; but since the only WR's you put on your roster were tiny speedsters, he looks like a FREAKING GIANT!" The issue is balance. Yes, you want some insanely fast guys on your team, but you have to juxtapose that with insanely huge/powerful guys so you can handle anything your opponent throws at you. Sadly, since it actually makes sense, the chance of this happening while Dumb & Dumber are still in office is about the same as trying to find a needle in Haiti.

Too soon?

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on January 18, 2010 1:46 PM.

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