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Neil, my chief concern is that the Bears are not as good as last year suggested. They had a cohesive team with no starters on IR. But that to me was an anomaly. All other teams had some impact to the starting rotation. When injuries occur, the roster weaknesses are evidenced. The NFL is a game of match-ups and now you begin playing your #2 or #3 against their #1. The Bears did not have this issue last year. I believe it could be argued that an 8-8 team can win 11 games with no season ending injuries to starters. i.e. Picture the Bears with both O.T,'s on IR like the Steelers last year or Olson and Forte on IR like the Packers. What would their season record have been? That scenario of no starters on IR can not be a given this year. I think depth is the real Achilles heal to this team. Thoughts?

Neil, my chief concern is that the Bears are not as good as last year suggested. They had a cohesive team with no starters on IR. But that to me was an anomaly. All other teams had some impact to the starting rotation. When injuries occur, the roster weaknesses are evidenced. The NFL is a game of match-ups and now you begin playing your #2 or #3 against their #1. The Bears did not have this issue last year. I believe it could be argued that an 8-8 team can win 11 games with no season ending injuries to starters. i.e. Picture the Bears with both O.T,'s on IR like the Steelers last year or Olson and Forte on IR like the Packers. What would their season record have been? That scenario of no starters on IR can not be a given this year. I think depth is the real Achilles heal to this team. Thoughts?

For us out of state Bears fans the only way to see the games is through NFL Sunday Ticket on DirecTV. DirecTV is good - but not great - and very expensive. What are the chances of the NFL allowing other television providers to sell the program?

What do you think is the "point of no return" on the 2011 NFL season? Aug. 1st? If the lockout does drag into late July will they cancel the Hall of Fame Game?

ahhhh....my my neal we havet done oe of theese in sometim have we my little dumpling? ohhh do i have qustins you bett yur hot littel pants id O!! :)

questin 1 wehn wil ANGELO be fired?????? he is rich ans asuccesfull ans he everytihng Ia M NOT! ohh how I HATE him fore that.

questin 2 how is staley da bear doing neal? (THIS IS M YMOST IMPORTANTR QUESTIN)

questin 3 why am i so much cooler then those LOOSERS brando ans kevin armstred??

tahn you neal you frisky littel skwerl....rawr.... :)

but yo uys now me old crap-ton just trying to ne paostive..

ps im naked... ohhh yessss

Hi Neil... I think every Bears fan is left with a very bitter taste in their mouths after Green Bay went through us twice, if you will, to win the Superbowl. I know the Bears need to shore up key areas like the O line, but is there any specific points of weakness in the Packers that the Bears could attack with specific personnel changes?

With Richard Dent getting his enshrinement into the Hall of Fame, that means 4 members of the famed 85 squad are now in Canton, Payton, Hampton, Singletary, and Dent. My question is, what about center Jay Hilgenberg, what, in your opinion, are his chances of getting a nod for the Hall? I think he is very deserving, Hilgenberg made 7 straight Pro-Bowls and was a 7 time All-Pro selection. For almost a decade Hilgenberg was one of the best centers in football, but you never hear anyone mention his name when it comes to getting his own Hall of Fame nod. GO BEARS!!

Neil,
In you opinion if the Bears were only to get one big name free agent, what position would you like to see the Bears put their money?

Neil,

Olin Kreutz is an all-time great Chicago Bears, but the organization's loyalty to him is holding the team offense back. His deteriorating play, since 2007, is dictating the potential of the line, as a whole. I do not believe he has the ability to match up against Suh, Fairley, Williams, Williams, Raji, etc. Is Kreutz "untouchable" from a roster perspective? What would happen if Kreutz retired and Garza became the center/veteran leader of the line? (if only we could get some push in the middle!)

What do you think would happen if Tice gave Chris Williams one more chance to earn the left tackle position? Maybe start Carimi at RG? Omiyale swings? RT Webb (who whoulda thought?). Death Match for LG?

Hope to hear your thoughts.

Mark
Lincoln Square, Chicago

Thanks for bringing back the Q&A. It's fun.

As much as we fans would like to see our team's draft picks really make an impact for the coming year, it is probably unrealistic to expect that. Especially after the first round. In my opinion, it still takes from 2-4 years for players to learn their craft and become solid, every down contributors in the NFL.

Assuming you agree, Bears fans should expect some second or third year player(s)to come from the back end of the roster and compete for a bigger role this year. Who do you think might surprise us?

I would love to see an analysis of the line play from last season, both on offense and defense.

We had so many moving parts in the o-line at the beginning of the year, and they played so poorly at times, that it is difficult to get my head around. Can we see some stats about sacks allowed and rushing ypa for the players? And maybe ask a scout to give an objective analysis?

On the d-line, I can't really differentiate between the interior players. During stretches, one of the players would stand out, but then they seemed to disappear. Was Harris worse than our other options at 3-technique? Did Toeina or Adams play better at NT? I'd also like to know how Idonije compared to the DE opposite Peppers when he was in Carolina.

I feel the offense as a whole will follow the line play, and that solid play from the d line would compensate for some of the concerns about our secondary. Should we be panicking about our lines, or can we have the hope that a new player or two will help each one perform at a higher level?

Normally I wouldn't answer one of Neil's questions, but I saw it didn't get answered and I also happened to read about 5 articles today done by PFF on offensive line play and rankings. So at least you can get part of an answer.

First you have offensive line pressures, that is anything including Sacks, Hits, and Hurries.

First you have pressure per play(a snap)

The Bears ranked 30th giving up a pressure close to 47% of the time on every snap. They allowed 308 pressures on offense out of 665 passing snaps. 308 was the second most pressures allowed by any team only Pit was worse. However this ranking includes pressures caused by the QB, RB, TE, WR, H-Back... as well. so its not pure offensive line.

The Pure offensive line ranking is called Cumulative O-Linemen Pass Protection Snaps and is based off the cumulative number of snaps played by O-Line only. The Bears O-line totaled 3327 total combined snaps, and gave up 223 pressures total, ranking them 32nd in the league in pressures allowed for O-Line only. There pressure per play percentage was also ranked 32nd at 6.7 percent. At the skill positions Chicago ranked 20th in Pressures per play, but 29th in pressures allowed at the skill position. Suggesting Chicago did a lot of blocking with their skill players.

Then you have QB invited pressures, aka the QB held on to the ball to long or made a mistake in his reads. Cutler ranked 22nd with 11. Which is not to bad if you look at guys like Brees who had 7, Rodgers had 7, Rivers had 8 and Brady had 9, so he is in the ball park.

Then you have percentage of pressures converted to sacks, the Bears ranked last with 56 sacks allowed but 29th in sacks per pressure. However this is more indicative of the high amount of pressures they allowed than it is of the sacks they allowed. Carolina and Seattle came in almost last percentage wise but also gave up close to the fewest amount of pressures of any team. NYG had the best line in football in terms of Pressure and Sacks. allowing 16 sacks and only 198 pressures.

To take thinngs a step further we must consider the extra blocker or lineman. The Bears averaged 5.75 blockers per snap ranking them as one of the top 4 teams using an extra blocker on almost ever play. This ties into pass protection when you consider they allowed the most sacks, the second most pressures and used a extra blocker more than almost any team in the league save for 3 others.

Finally we get to the conclussion according to PFF. Mind you this is pass protection only, they are doing run blocking and short yardage next week and the Bears look to be in the bottm of that list as well.

The Bears offensive line ranked 31st in the nfl according to PFF.

"Regardless of what some may have led you to believe, the Bears line really didn’t get all that much better as the year went on. Both tackles struggled (giving up 26 sacks and 120 total pressures between J’Marcus Webb and Frank Omiyale) and the interior wasn’t much better. Worse still was the negative impact of blocking tight end Brandon Manumaeuna. Thought to be like an extra tackle, he gave up pressure on 12.37% of his pass blocks. If there’s a positive to take it was how good Matt Forte and Chester Taylor were with their blitz pick up."


Pressure Per Play Rank: 30th


Sack % of Pressure Rank: 29th


Average Number of Blockers Per Play Rank: 29th

If your wondering Pit finished last. Which I mentioned on this board when they went to the Super Bowl. I didn't mention there ranking I just mentioned how bad their line was. However the did suffer some major injuries to that line.

Anyway that is a partial answer to your line break down. I am sure I will get some grief for posting a negative remark about the great Webb who ranked as one of the worst two tackles in football last year and his stats show this clearly. But hey some around here think he will be the next Jimbo Covert because he played football last year so that makes him good.

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This page contains a single entry by Neil Hayes published on June 7, 2011 12:08 PM.

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