The Bears offensive line was expected to be greatly improved with first-round draft pick Chris Williams and seven-time Pro Bowler Orlando Pace taking over at the tackle spots. It hasn’t worked that way. The Bears are averaging 2.6 yards per rush.
The Bears offensive line was expected to be greatly improved with first-round draft pick Chris Williams and seven-time Pro Bowler Orlando Pace taking over at the tackle spots.
It hasn’t worked that way. The Bears are averaging 2.6 yards per rush.
“We have three new starters,” coach Lovie Smith said. “It takes awhile for everything to jell. It’s not like I’m displeased with what the offensive line has done.”
The offensive line is displeased with itself.
“We pride ourselves on being a run-blocking team,” said left guard Frank Omiyale, the third new starter. “We’re hoping for some big things. We all have been playing football for a lot of years now, and we don’t have years to get ready. We’ve got to get it right now.”
Houshmandzadeh will “show” Bears
Seattle’s T.J. Houshmandzadeh, the top free-agent receiver on the market last year, took a joking stab at the Bears general manager for not trying to sign him. “Man, the Bears ain’t holler at me,” he said on a teleconference. “Jerry Angelo didn’t think I could play, so I’m going to show him Sunday.”
Houshmandzadeh later made it clear he didn’t hold a grudge. “I could care less,” he said.
“That’s their choice. That’s what makes America great. You have the right to do what you want to do.”
He also said the Bears didn’t need him as much as critics make out. “They have good receivers there,” he said. “Devin Hester is going to develop into a good receiver. He has great quickness, great lateral movement, great speed and great hand-eye coordination, so he should develop into a good receiver if he has the coaching and they open up the passing game for him.”
Moving on, but not on the run
The Bears are coming off a win over the Super Bowl champion Steelers, but the main topic this week was Chicago’s No. 31-ranked running game. That irritated center Olin Kreutz.
“Anybody want to ask how it’s good to come back and win games? No, it’s just about the run game,” Kreutz said.
So, an obliging radio reporter asked, was it a relief to win?
“It was a relief to win, but that win is gone now and we’re on to the next game,” Kreutz said.
Another try. Is it more fun to move on after a win?
“It’s always fun to come off a win, but we’re not thinking about the win. We’re moving on.”
Later, Kreutz added: “We’re happy that we won, but we know we have to improve the run game.”
Just don’t ask him about it.
New threat at tight end
Kellen Davis, used strictly as a blocker as a rookie last year, showed he could be a versatile tight end in pace of Desmond Clark last week, catching the first five passes of his career for 38 yards and a TD.
“I was able to make some plays and get into the flow of the game,” he said. “It was a lot better than last year, when I’d come in on the three tight-end set. I’d be sitting and then have to come in on fourth down and 1 yard and have to make a block. I showed them I can be reliable. It’s great knowing I’ll have an opportunity to get the ball.”
Rockford Register Star assistant sports editor Matt Trowbridge’s Quick Shots on the Bears appear Fridays. He can be reached at (815) 987-1383 or firstname.lastname@example.org.