Week 3 was the first road test for the Bears rookies with a national TV match-up in hostile Heinz Field. Rookie lineman Kyle Long & Jordan Mills passed with flying colors. They have now faced two of the better defensive fronts in the league and have more then held their own. My recap of their week 3 performance is below. To read my overview of all the Bear rookies, click here.
Kyle Long RG: Long has continued to improve since his shaky performance in Week 1. His run blocking was excellent and Pro Football Focus graded out Long at +2.4 which was a top five grade for NFL guards. Against a complex Pittsburgh scheme, that is very impressive. He did give up two pressures on Cutler, but no sacks and no penalties for the 3rd week in a row. Long has yet another big test next week in the Lions Ndamukong Suh. Bring it on.
Jordan Mills RT: The right side of the Bears O-line is quickly becoming a strength in the running game. Mills & Long have been involved in most of the Bears successful runs this year and it was no different against the Steelers. In the first quarter Mills and Long opened a massive running lane for Forte that turned into a 55-yard gain. Mills held up well in pass pro as well, but did allow a few pressures on Cutler. Like Long, Mills has yet to allow a sack or commit a penalty.
Jon Bostic LB: DJ Williams’ strong performance in week 3 (4 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 force fumble) should put to rest any talk of Jon Bostic starting at MLB. I do think Bostic should be getting some snaps when Williams needs a rest, but all three games have been fairly close and I don’t think Trestman has enough confidence in Bostic to play him when the game is still in doubt. Hopefully the Bears will blow out another team early and give Bostic some developmental reps he needs. Bostic did have 1 tackle on special teams.
Kaseem Greene LB: Was activate and played on special teams, but didn’t record a tackle.
Cornelious Washington DE: Active for the 2nd week in a row, but has yet to see any defensive reps or make any plays on special teams.
Zach Minter DT: This could be the last week Minter ends up on the inactive list as starting DT Henry Melton is out for the season for a torn ACL. Minter could see some defensive snaps in week 4 as the Bears 3rd DT. The Bears could bring in a free agent DT this week, but I think Minter will get the first chance and could become a factor this season with a strong showing against the Lions.
Michael Ford RB: Coach Trestman claimed this week that Michael Bush is the Bears goal-line back, but 9 yards on 8 carries isn’t going to get it done. Bush will get more chances to prove his worth as a short-yardage back, but if he continues to be ineffective, Ford could get a chance to play. He has a low center of gravity (5’9) and showed he could break some tackles in the preseason.
Marquees Wilson WR
CJ Wilson CB
David Bass DE