What the Chicago Bears signing of Michael Schofield really means

Chicago Bears (Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
Chicago Bears (Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) /

Ryan Poles did not make any big-name splashes this offseason when it came to the offensive line. Instead, he used the NFL Draft to bring in four new faces — Braxton Jones, Zach Thomas, Doug Kramer and Ja’Tyre Carter. The problem with using Day 3 picks on offensive linemen when the offensive line is a huge question mark is that it does not cater to the masses. Fans need to realize that the Chicago Bears are being patient and it may have paid off with the recent signing of Michael Schofield.

When it comes to the Chicago Bears offensive line, right now the right guard spot has the biggest question mark. We have to wait and see which two of the three offensive tackles make the starting spot, but the starting right guard spot could literally be earned by anyone on this roster. In fact, this signing proves it might still be someone not on the roster.

Michael Schofield should be the favorite to start at right guard for the Chicago Bears

Up until now, the starting right guard has been Sam Mustipher during OTAs and minicamp. I’m not sure anyone thought Mustipher would keep that spot. Well, maybe one person who I shall not name. Michael Schofield is an immediate upgrade over Mustipher and he is honestly the favorite on this team to win that spot now — at least in my mind. The only way I see him being a backup is if one of the rookies really steps up and proves himself. The one thing Schofield isn’t is young.

All offseason we have been talking about a “type” that Ryan Poles focuses on for the offensive line. He likes guys who are tall, but lean. Yes, at 6’6″, 301 pounds would be considered lean for an offensive lineman. These linemen are usually more agile too, which also fits the scheme Luke Getsy is looking to run this year. Most of the linemen that Poles has added to the Chicago Bears roster are 6’4″ or taller and no heavier than 310 pounds.

Schofield is a former (2014) third-round draft pick of the Denver Broncos. He attended Carl Sandburg high school in Orland Park, IL. He started 15 games as a right tackle in his rookie year. Then, he moved into the right guard spot and started all 16 games in his sophomore year. He has bounced inside and outside on the right side throughout his career and the Chicago Bears are now his fourth team.

Michael Schofield played for two years for the Broncos before being waived and claimed by the Chargers. He started 37 of 47 games for the Chargers during that stint. He then started in three of 11 games for Carolina before going back to Los Angeles and starting 12 of 15 games for the Chargers last year. He will be 32 years old in November.

For those of you who like Pro Football Focus (PFF) grades (I don’t), Michael Schofield had a grade of 66.8 last year. He allowed two sacks and committed three penalties. In prior years, his grades fluctuated from 50.3 (2020) all the way to 72.0 (2016).

This signing indicates that the coaching staff does not have faith in the right guard spot on the offensive line. Signing Michael Schofield indicates that he will get a shot and honestly, he should be the favorite to start. This also tells me that it’s highly unlikely that Larry Borom or Teven Jenkins kicks inside to right guard. However, all of this said, none of these starting spots should be a lock. The coaches should start the best five players – even if that means Schofield at tackle and not guard.