10 Takeaways from the Bears Preseason Game 3.
Two steps forward and one giant step back. Here are my top ten takeaways from the Chicago Bears third preseason game.
1) The offensive line is hurt and I understand that, but the offense as a whole needed to be better than what it showed Saturday afternoon at Soldier Field. Three and out seemed to be the main theme with drop after drop from the wide receivers. If I’m GM Ryan Pace I would have a talk with Coach John Fox about starting our offensive starters with Cleveland for the last preseason game.
2) Jay Cutler still showed poise and growth within a struggling offense. Cutler sensed pressure when the pocket collapsed and was able to extend plays. His throw placements for most of the day were right where they should be, but drops by Kevin White and Alshon Jeffery halted the offensive series.
3) Alshon Jeffery struggled with consistency. He made an impressive catch in a tight window, but dropped a sure fire post route which could have had the possibility for six. Alshon has been a reliable target for Cutler for most of his time with the Bears, but in a critical contract year we’ll have to see if he has the focus to produce on the field so he can get paid off.
4) The offensive line was tested against a good Kansas City Chiefs front seven and had a hard time executing blocks. I understand that Kyle Long wasn’t playing, but this is where depth becomes a major role in any organization. In the case of the Bears offensive line depth is lacking and it was evident against the Chiefs front seven.
5) The Bears front seven look to be rock solid. Led by Eddie Goldman and Akiem Hicks this Bears run defense looks to be the real deal. Willie Young and Lamarr Houston continue to elevate their level of play. Both men provided a nice pass rush while on the field. This is great news for Vic Fangio and Pernell McPhee who is still rehabbing his knee injury and future to start the season healthy is in doubt.
6) The Bears secondary situation looks to be the only glaring spot on the defense. Cornerback Tracy Porter sustained a concussion in the game from a knee to the back of his head by Bears safety Harold Jones-Quartey. The Bears corner backs need to get healthy quickly because week one brings the Texan’s quick wide receiver duo of DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller.
7) Deiondre’ Hall turn your damn head. Seriously this kid has potential, but lacks the ability to turn his head and locate the football while in coverage. Hall was torched by Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill for a 58 yard gain. All Hall had to do was turn his head and locate the ball to tip it or pick it off. The positive from Hall in this game was that he did get an interception from a tipped pass at the line. This was more of a right time right moment kind of a play though.
8) Johnathan Bullard continues to be a bright spot for the Bears rookie class. He played for most of the game and made the most of his opportunity. Bullard showed his speed and strength to blow past offensive linemen all day. I believe he had a good enough game to start over Mitch Unrein. Having a line consisting of Goldman, Hicks, and Bullard would have a balance of strength and speed which would be hard for any offensive line to block.
9) The Illinois State product Cameron Meredith had himself a game. The wide receiver made some nifty plays and caught a 16 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Connor Shaw. Meredith continues to impress this preseason making plays and showing that he deserves more playing time.
10) I mentioned earlier that I would start the Bears offensive starters against Cleveland in the final preseason game. I stand by that. The offense cannot perform like it did in the dress rehearsal and be considered acceptable enough to have sit until the start of the season. If anything have them play for a quarter, but there has to be clear improvement because they played like complete crap against the Chiefs starting defense.
The final Bears preseason game is September 1st against the Browns.