The TE position – Not only were the Bears o-linemen beaten consistently on the interior but even when the tackles made decent blocks (Massey, Leno, Williams), the tight ends couldn’t seal their blocks to open holes outside. The Bears were missing some of their TE depth and were hoping to see something from veterans Tony Moeaki and Rob Housler as well as 2nd year guys Khari Lee and Gannon Sinclair. Unfortunately, none of the players stepped up and they all struggled to add any value as blockers. Not one them caught a pass either.
Starter Zach Miller should be back in week two as should converted DE Greg Scruggs, who has the size to be a force as a blocker. Those two players aren’t going to remind anyone of Gronk and Martellus Bennett, but they can at least give the Bears a respectable receiving option and maybe an impact run blocker. They can’t do any worse than the Bears TEs did in week one of the preseason.
C Ted Larsen – The Bears entire starting o-line was outmatched but it may have been the most obvious at the center of the Bears offensive line. Larsen struggled with picking up pass rushers on stunts and blitzes and got zero push in the run game. It’s been a few years since Larsen played center at the NFL level, so it’s understandable that he was rusty.
If it were just rust I wouldn’t be that worried, but Larsen struggled last season with the Cardinals as well and that was at guard his natural position. Both Larsen and Cutler are saying the right things about being ready for week one of the NFL season, but until I see Larsen actually play well I’m going to be concerned.
The 2nd & 3rd String Offensive Line – C Cornelius Edison, T Jason Weaver, & T Martin Wallace were the most glaring examples of incompetence among the Bears backup o-linemen. The were overpowered, beaten with speed, and forced into multiple holding penalties.
The Bears are dangerously thin on the offensive line and none of the potential back-ups looked like they were ready for NFL action. Edison was the biggest disappointment in my opinion, as a decorated DII athlete who just spent most of the 2015 season on the Bears practice squad… I expected more.
Weaver and Wallace don’t have high upsides, but I hoped for at least the ability to hold their own against 2nd & 3rd string defensive linemen. The Bears have already made some moves to bolster their o-line depth in the last week and Edison, Weaver, and Wallace’s jobs may be on the line if they don’t improve quickly.