Chicago Bears: Previewing the right guard competition

Chicago Bears (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bears, offense
Chicago Bears (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bears have a competition for the starting right guard position. Here are the players competing for the spot and what they bring to the table.

It was quite evident last season that the Chicago Bears struggled greatly on the offensive line. A huge hole on the line was the loss of fan-favorite Kyle Long, who has been an anchor on the Bears’ line for years. After he became banged up and eventually retired, the line struggled.

After a great 2018 season in which the Bears were ranked highly for their outstanding offensive line play, they faltered in 2019. According to Football Outsiders, they ranked 29th overall and in run blocking. They were slightly better in the pass-blocking department but still were ranked 21st. They gave up 45 sacks last season compared to 33 the season before.

Because of this major drop off, General Manager Ryan Pace and Head Coach Matt Nagy cleaned house in the run game and offensive line department. Both Harry Hiestand, offensive line coach and co-run game coordinator, and Mark Helfrich, offensive coordinator and co-run game coordinator, got fired after the regression.

The Bears brought in a great and proven offensive line coach in Juan Castillo and a proven offensive coordinator in Bill Lazor to take over for the two former coaches. Castillo has 24 years of NFL experience in which his offenses have been lethal on the ground. Lazor has flourished not only with quarterbacks but also in improving the run game in both Cincinnati and Miami.

Castillo looks to find the best guy to man the right guard job. There are two main guys who are expected to fight for the job, but also a dark-horse to beat out both of these guys.