Chicago Sun-Times

Omiyale to be Bears right tackle?

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During my chat on colleague Mike Mulligan's radio show on 670 The Score, he raised a very interesting point about what the Bears may do at offensive tackle in 2010.

It's widely expected that Orlando Pace will be released during the off-season and that Chris Williams (the 14th overall pick in 2008) will take over at left tackle.

But Mulligan insisted that the Bears right tackle will be... Frank Omiyale.

Omiyale started and finished the season as the starting left guard, although he was benched for a few games. But Omiyale's background is as an offensive tackle.

He started one game for the Carolina Panthers last year, when Pro Bowl left tackle Jordan Gross was sidelined with an injury.

Josh Beekman started four games at left guard in place of Omiyale.

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Makes sense.

Omiyale wouldn't work for a power system at RT, but would be a different case in Martz system, which would allow him to use more finesse. It was also known that if he blew it at tackle, he could make that switch.

I also think its far easier to find an offensive guard in the draft or in free agency that can contribute immediately than a tackle.

Hindsight is 20/20, but I really wanted the Bears to take a chance with Carl Nicks two drafts ago.

This would significantly increase the athleticism on the edges of the offensive line, which is really what we need. If Martz wants to move the pocket with Cutler, having two athletic tackles that can get out in space and protect will be a nice luxury to have. He obviously is not physical enough to play guard long term, so we should put him where he can do the most good. We will have Williams and Omiyale under contract for another 3 years each, so that could be a solid building block while we change out the interior over that time.

It will be interesting to see whether they keep Shaffer as a swing tackle, or if they use him to add some nasty to the interior of the line. I would not mind seeing him as the RG in place of Garza, so we can get a little stronger on the inside to combat the Williams wall and Suh, who will likely be the Lions draft pick in Round 1.

IDC, Nicks would have been a great pickup, especially since he went with the 164th pick in the draft. We took Steltz, Bowman, and Kellen Davis in the three picks prior to Nicks being taken (120, 142, 158). Our line would look drastically different with Nicks in there at guard.

Last winter when Chicago signed Frank Omiyale I figured they were gonna play him at tackle, they didn't. This year I hope they do, to me, Omiyale would be a better fit outside at tackle vs inside at guard. I say move Omiyale back outside to tackle and allow him and Kevin Shaffer to duke it out this summer in training camp for the starting spot on the right side. The odd man out could then become the Bears swing tackle.

Another name for the right tackle job is James Marten. Obviously Angelo likes him, he spent the last couple off-seasons trying to get him before he finally did last year. The guy is an intriguing prospect, nice size at 6-8 315lbs, he's been in the league for 4 seasons now, I say its time to see what he's got.

Don't take this following comment wrong, I'm not a Lovie hater, I'd like to see the guy make it. But, one problem I've noticed with Lovie and his coaching staff over the years has been their inability to evaluate their personnel, and put the best guys on the field during game day. A couple example are wide receiver Devin Aromashodu and running back Kahlil Bell. After watching Aromashodu tear it up at seasons end, and significantly help out down in the red-zone, you gotta wonder why wasn't this guy starting weeks earlier? Especially with Cutler asking the coaching staff to put him in since the pre-season. Also, with Garrett Wolfe being so ineffective, why wasn't Bell given a shot, why did it take an injury to Wolfe to finally see Bell? Not saying Bell was a world burner himself, but he was more effective, especially inside. My hope is the coaching staff starts trying some of these backups out more, like tackle James Marten. James Marten might not be the answer, but we'll never know if he never gets a chance, hopefully he does GO BEARS!!

I think you can find a decent guard somewhere late in the draft. Lets hope that Omiyale is a better tackle than guard. His pedigree was that of a pass blocker anyway. When the team went away from Beekman midseason they claimed it was because of Omiyale pass blocking. I hope they do keep Shaffer around to play backup tackle. He has some experience on both sides. I wouldn't move him inside when we have no idea if he can play there. The last time Bears moved a tackle with no experience at guard inside was did that one work out?

With Martz, the entire O will get a fresh look. Frank O-by-the-way was a flop at guard. JA shoulda known that since he never played guard. This team sure likes to play guys of of position. He should get the look at RT. All things considered, I thought Shaffer looked good at RT. Let them hammer it out in camp. Both guard spots and center need to be looked at. Garza is probably a legit guy to have as a back up at this point. Beekman projects as a center, his natural spot anyway. FA needs to find at least one starting OG, but Lovie and JA have both stated that the D is priority for FA spending. Hmmmm... building a good OL can solve problems in many areas. Giving Cutler time to throw and Forte room to run would keep the D on the sideline and rested. If they go D in FA, then 3rd round must be an OG. A big nasty road-grader type would be nice.. Come on JA.. it starts up front. Build from the OL out...

I like these comments. I'm not a Lovie hater either, but I thought Beekman did a much better job at guard than Omiyale in the games he played this year and the season before, so I can't help but wonder what the holdup was to start Beekman(unless these NFL coaches know something I don't, but what are the chances?). I also thought our line looked much better once Shaffer was staring and Pace was benched, so I'm not convinced that Omiyale is the answer to start anywhere. We won't know this until the season starts, but I hope he makes a good fit at RT.

Its a wonder to me why they actually didnt want Beekman at G? He seemed to play pretty darned good in the games I saw, we could go with Center or Guard draft in that case. Yeah, I remember the tall LT we had that were pretty good, VanHorn and Big Cat come to mind so that 6'8" guy might sound like a try anyways,
I agree with that assessment of Lovie Kevin, I want him to succeed but he has a big problem with that, not playing the best player instead of the Veteran player. Forte was pretty slowed last year, most of the year, but he stayed with him and hurt the team, now we are wondering what the new DE/DT can do and we haven't seen much of them either even though Rod dint help the Dline much and we went backwards even maybe.
I don't want to wait until later in the draft for that Oline help ever again as Jerry doesn't have a good history of picking late Oline drafts at all, please lets quit messing that up and just bite the bullet and get help asap in the draft for a change.
Not sure about Shaeffer as a G, but Omiyale at RT is a go! That would help the Oline alot right there.

I think we will see a change in the offensive coaching staff with the new additions. Martz has never been shy about changing things up, and Tice is not about to accept a weak link if he has an alternative on the bench. The bottom line for all of the new coaches (DeBord, Tice, Martz, and Day) is that they get 1 year to do their thing. If it doesn't work, all of them will be looking for a job in 2011. So while they will be of a similar strategy, it will be every man for himself.

I hope they stick to it, and stop propping up veterans when we have young players to try and develop. Draft picks, free agents, and home grown improvements all have to be a part of the equation to turn this team around.

That is a good question, what are Chicago's plans for Frank Omiyale? Will he stay at guard, or be moved back outside to tackle. It's also a good question because the answer will basically tell you what Chicago's off-season plans are.

If Omiyale stays put, Chicago will probably use their third rounder on either another defensive tackle, or maybe a corner.

If Omiyale is moved to tackle, left guard will be without a doubt need #1 heading into april. I think it's need #1 either way myself. Yes Omiyale could come on at guard, but he might not. And the left guard spot has been killing the Bears since Ruben Brown retired. I would like to see the Bears use their 3rd rounder on either Alabama guard Mike Johnson (6-6 305lbs), or Illinois guard Jon Asamoah (6-5 315lbs).

Mike Johnson was a 4 year starter on the o-line at one of the nations best programs. He was voted AP 1st team all-american this year, and started most of the senior bowl a left guard. Overall he looked pretty solid. He did get beat one time during the game, but he looked pretty good for most of the game. Also, I wouldn't judge a guy by one bad play or game. Example, a couple seasons back, Miami's all-pro tackle Jake Long got beat a couple times vs Ohio states Vernon Gholston the final week of the college season. Long didn't turn out so bad despite the bad game vs Gholston. Again, I wouldn't judge a guy from one game. Mike Johnson should be a pretty good guard at the next level.

As far as Asamoah, he's a good run blocker inside, but is a very good pass blocker from his guard position. That alone might make him a nice fit in Chicago, especially with Martz calling plays now. The reason Beekman got the start, then got benched in favor of Omiyale back during the season was because Beekman seems to struggle in his pass blocking. Thats why Omiyale got the edge over Beekman. But, Beekman seems to be a better run blocker than Omiyale. This is why Illinois Jon Asamoah should be the guy on Angelo's radar, he can run block and pass block, and at 6-5 315lbs would give the Bears some size inside, another reason Omiyale got the edge over Beekman. I say draft a guard, maybe Asamoah or Johnson, just an opinion GO BEARS!!

Why would Omiyale be an upgrade over Shaffer? I don't seem to remember him being that big an issue on the line and Omiyale disappointed pretty consistently. Is he going to hear the snap count better over there? I doubt it.

Keep Shaffer on the right side, let Omiyale work as the backup swing tackle. Shaffer has more experience and is frankly better.

I don't know about this being true. I could see him getting a shot to challenge at the position, but you would think the Bears learned last year that not everyone is suited to play RT. Omiyale has never played RT.

Everyone seems to think that the Martz system uses two LT's and some sort of special system. It doesn't, its a man scheme with 37 different protections. It doesn't use two LT's, yes he passes a lot but so did the Bears last year and that didn't help Williams at RT.

Now Williams played two games at LT, they use double and triple teaming to help him against Allen with no Pat Williams playing, and he played against Detroit. I look at him as an unkown who is about to be put in a very complex passing game that Orlando Pace in his prime even struggled with at times.

Not sure why anyone thinks Omiyale is some kind of stud Tackle all of a sudden? His problems didn't come from lack of strength or size. His problems came from ballance, his high stance, slow feet, and general lack of explostion. He was slow and off balance all the time. Not sure how that will change at tackle. Not to mention he also has never played RT, which may seem like no big deal, but when you spend your career using your left leg for a kick step and then you have to use your right leg. It tends to get a little sloppy.

Beekman is a hard worker but thats about it. He is slow, small, and not very athletic. He has short arms and bigger DT's just destroy him. The team put up the same numbers with BeekmAn in that they did with Omiyale. Also Beekman's strength is run blocking which he is average at and screens, but he is really bad in pass protection.

I cannot begin to say how bad Omiyale was last year, he just was. Beekman is no better though. This isn't the WCO anymore, these guys struggled on 3 and 5 step protection. We are talking 7 step drops most of the time now. Shaffer is better suited to play the position than Omiyale, just like he was better suited to play RT over Williams and he showed it.

Basically the whole O-Line needs an upgrade, save for Williams who get the standard 3 year first round pick starting chance but he better show a lot of progress. Outside of that they could upgrade at the other 4 positions.

If the Bears look to move Olsen and can get a third or second for him, look for them to address the line with their first two picks or even a reciever with one of two.

The names to watch are.
Eric Olsen C/G
Mike Johnson G
Vladimir Ducasse G/RT
Kyle Calloway RT
Mike Tepper OT
Zane Beadles OT
Jeremy Williams WR. I excpect him to drop do to his injury history. Angelo is already sniffing around this guy.
The reciever class is deep but not excellent this year, some guys will drop, Maybe LaFell and Benn.
Angelo may not want a reciever but Martz is already watching the film and will decide who can play who is another Angelo mistake.

Jensen that was some intresting info on the radio today about most of Cutlers picks comming while throwing to Knox and Bennett.

I spoke yesterday afternoon on the phone to offensive line coach Mike Tice and when I brought up Omiyale, he specifically stated that he is not sure where anyone will line up and that he is keeping all his options open including moving him to the right side. He also mentioned that he really likes the physicality of Johan Asiata inside so if Omiyale was moved to tackle look for Asiata to be in the mix on the interior. Also Coach Tice stated that he wants competition to be intense like never before, so im sure all the possibilities we are all talking about will be looked at carefully.

By the way just a little insight into Martz. He likes really tall, athletic Tackles with good size who are pass blockers. Pace and Tucker. Like 6-6 and up.

So add Jared Veldheer to the list, and maybe Sam Young but he looked so bad this year, he did look good at the Senior Bowl though, he could stand to add about 20 pounds. Vladimir Ducasse is someone I am kinda liking. I think Calloway would be a great fit. I really hope the Bears can trade Olsen for a number 2.

Oh and Kevin Asamoha was only 6-4 300 at the senior bowl, and had the shortest arms of all linemen. What is with you and guys with short arms? 31 inches.

Martz will ask for the best pass blocking tackle or guard, or maybe both that the bears can get. Much like the Tampa 2 needs to apply pressure with the front 4. Martz offense needs to protect with five, he doesn't like using TE's, he would rather have another reciever in their than a TE and he doesn't want to waste a man on extra blocking. His offense is all about flooding a zone with recievers.

Defensive Tackle
Running Back

Those are all positions they could use a blue chip player at or an upgrade. So almost the whole team. Pick your poison.

I think the Bears need to start wheeling and dealing. Giants need Help at DT and the Wil. Send them Harris and Williams, and see if You can't get a number 2 pick. Though this will be a tough sell with so many good DT's this year. If they can get something for Olsen, Lamarr Houston would look nice on the line next to Harris and fits the Bears scheme.

This draft is Safety rich and if the Bears can trade some guys away for a couple of second rounders they could help out some major needs instead of hoping for guys to step up or letting the talent they do have ride the bench. So many needs so few picks. Its a nice class this year too.

Oh god Bill don't start again. How could you even know Tice he just got here. I know you love to claim you are BFF with all the coaches and you and Angelo are Brothers, but really, take your pills.

The idea of moving Olsen for a 2nd round pick is silly. He is a proven commodity that cost us a 1st. There is no guarantee a draft pick will work out - especially not with Jerry and Lovie picking. You don't trade something for nothing... Remember Thomas Jones?

That said, the whole line is awful, with the exception of Williams, who only maybe is awful. Possibly, James Marten might work out at RT, and Lance Louis at LG. But that would be luck.

JA should have been dropping the last 5 guys on the roster - Rashied, McClover, McKie, Peterson, etc. after the 11th game last season. He then could have gone "shopping" off of the the rest of the leagues practice squads. There are always guys out there who have ability if you aren't too stubborn to look for them. The problem is, your coaching staff has to bring them up to speed, and Lovie loves his recycled, position-changed veterans too much to actually train more than one or two kids a year. At least that's how it seems to me.

By Bill Holland on February 11, 2010 5:51 PM
"I spoke yesterday afternoon on the phone to offensive line coach Mike Tice and when I brought up Omiyale, he specifically stated that he is not sure where anyone will line up and that he is keeping all his options open including moving him to the right side. He also mentioned that he really likes the physicality of Johan Asiata inside so if Omiyale was moved to tackle look for Asiata to be in the mix on the interior. Also Coach Tice stated that he wants competition to be intense like never before, so im sure all the possibilities we are all talking about will be looked at carefully."


Well first off, I love how Tice gave you all these specifics like "We don't know where anyone will line up yet" or "there'll be intense competition!" So believable.

It used to be somewhat entertaining to hear you say these things Bill, but now I wonder. Hopefully someday, someday soon, a close friend of yours will notify you of the gas leak in the kitchen that's been behind your hallucinations. Also, that "phone" you use to "talk to Bears staff and coaches" is really just an overly ripe banana.

Back to reality.

How can anyone put faith in Omiyale starting at RT? I mean, ok, the dude should perform better at tackle given that he actually is one, but c'mon! Martz says some nice things in his interviews and all of a sudden the fans see SBXLV in the horizon. Nevermind the fact that we've been a .500 team since the '06 season and the same cardboard cutout who Bears players refer to as coach every now and then is still calling the shots.

I don't know anything about the Tice/Holland connection, but it probably is pretty much wide open.

Williams is going to be at left. Kruetz with be in there, you know he will. It would surprise me if Garza lost his job, but it could happen. Shaffer is what he is, which is a servicable right tackle who is better off at the swing. I had given up on Omiyale until the last couple games. He just looked completely lost out there. But....he was abusing Jimmy Kennedy, which is not really that hard but still. He has decent physical tools, I thought his problem was that he was so tentative. Maybe the light came on. If Beekman was so much better why did they put Omiyale back in? Tice will figure it out.

The one who intrigues me is Lance Louis. That guy looked really good in the pre-season and has had a year to get better. The Bears have carried a series of O-linemen on the practice squad trying to develop for the last several years. It wasn't that successful. Last year they cut some players they liked and kept Louis on the active roster. That tells me they didn't want to risk him on the practice squad. He's a little short for a tackle, but he definately has the feet to play anywhere on the line.

Guys one thing encourages me about the line. Last year they didn't have any early draft choices either. They really focused the organization on upgrading the receiver position with what they had. It worked. Say what you will, but the receiver position is improved. It should be easier to get talent in rounds 3-7 for the o-line. As much as Angelo's drafting has sucked in the past, it has been improving.

If anyone studies game film of RT Schaffer when he played in the last three games you can clearly see that, as a run blocker, he absolutely dominated the people in front of him. As a pass blocker he was adequate, but rusty.

Kevin: about your ealier comment, everybody seems to have forgotten that Aromashodu got injured at the beginning of the season. If he had been healthy, he probably would have started week 1 against Green Bay instead of Knox. Since Knox performed well, Aromashodu stayed on the sidelines until Hester's injury. I'm not trying to justify all personnel decisions by this coaching staff, but you can't really blame them for this one.

MSBearsFan wrote:"As much as Angelo's drafting has sucked in the past, it has been improving."

I see absolutely no evidence supporting this statement. Improving would suggest that last years draft was an improvement. As I recall:

R3: J.Gilbert / J Iglesias - niether were visible
R4: D.J. Moore - never saw him
R5: Henry Melton - a project
R5: J.Knox - success! The blind squirrel found an acorn
R6: L. Louis - looks intriguing
R7: A. Afalava - looks intriguing
R7: Derek Kinder

I see little evidence that JA can draft and a lot of evidence that he can't. Not at least in the earlier rounds where blue chip players are expected to be located.

I guess if your suggesting that prior drafts were even worse than last year - then you might be right.

Don't drink the Cool Aid - the Martz idea is exciting but I don't see how he integrates well with: (1) Lovie's conservative run and play D or (2) the worst field in the league.

What is it with you guys. I am not crazy when I said I talked to coach Tice. When we get a new coach, I have always called Halas Hall and introduced myself and said a simple hello to them and most coaches will be cordial and give you a few minutes of there time. On wednesday I called Halas Hall and spoke with Coach Martz, Coach Tice and our new quarterbacks coach shane day. Just because those of you who criticize me don't pick up the phone and call halas hall yourself gives you know reason to make me look different. It's not a BIG DEAL to call it's a regular phone number (a number that is easy to get) and a secretary answers and says "hello Chicago Bears" and you say can I please speak to so and so. Instead of sitting on here yapping about all the rumors you guys think might happen, I just happen to talk to the coaches directly. It doesn't make me any better than anyone else on here, and I never claim it to be. Why can't we just stick to talking about the Bears on this blog instead of criticizing eachother. By the way Mike, how much would you like to bet that I am not halucinating or flat out lying about speaking to the coaches? Any amount of money you would like to bet is fine with me, as long as when it's proven to you, you then come back on here and apologize and let everyone know the truth about what I have said. Then it will be the last time anyone will ever think that I am lying about what I've this topic. Truthfully, I think I am wasting my time even responding to the claim that I'm lying, since I would be pretty stupid to tell to you that I am talking to the coaches and then turn out to be making it up.

Actually DougR, that's a pretty good draft for the later rounds.

Does anybody remember that chart the ST published in this blog last off-season? It was quoting Charley Connerly or somebody on the odds of a draft choice making the team and contributing. I would love to see another post on that subject. I seem to remember the chances of a 3 rounder was less than 30 percent and a 5th was maybe 15% or less? If you find 2 or 3 good players, you have had a decent draft.

If either Gilbert or Melton or Iglesias turn out to be decent starting players in the next year or two, you can probably call their draft class a success. That is with Knox and Alfalava already contributing. If you hit on a guy like Louis or a free agent it's like stealing.

There is no doubt Angelo deserves a lot of critisism for his drafting history. However the last couple years haven't been as bad. They have dug themselves into such a talent hole that he is going to hit a few out of the park to turn it around. I'd like to think it can be done, but.....?

I am not big on the talent level of the players we have at all, but at least Martz will call the right calls. Thats a major improvemnt right there. And this team cant run block and so going the pass more often makes alot of sense with what we have.

"It doesn't make me any better than anyone else on here, and I never claim it to be." -Bill Holland

Bill, maybe you've forgotten about the lunatic, foaming-at-the-mouth rant you directed at Brad Biggs when he was still writing here. You know what I'm talking about? Biggs introduced the 4 Down Territory thing and then you went off on him saying how dare he try and answer questions about the Bears when you, Bill Holland, was the self-proclaimed number one Bears fan because you happen to leave Jerry Angelo voice messages time and time again. Not only did you tell Biggs he knew nothing, but you made the same remarks about everyone else that posts here.

So yeah, I do think you're a little nuts and therefore I can't really take the things you say seriously.

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on February 11, 2010 10:38 AM.

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