Everyone knows what an NFL team says and what they do are two different things. The Chicago Bears claim they have enough talent on the offensive line to protect Jay Cutler. Is it true or are there a few moves they can make?
Chad Clifton from Green Bay Packers could add championship experience
At such a late stage in free agency it's almost impossible to find real help at any area of a football team. Still the offensive line market swelled slightly a few weeks ago thanks to an old Chicago rival. The Green Bay Packers say goodbye to their 12-year veteran tackle Chad Clifton. A product of Tennessee, Clifton came into the league protecting Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre and ended his time in Green Bay helping the Pack win their fourth Super Bowl. He has gone to two Pro Bowls and helped lead his team to a 15-1 record last year. At 35, he has a lot of mileage on his body but the Chicago Bears must look past that at what Clifton could offer. He has played left tackle most of his career and brings valuable championship experience to an offense largely void of it. Though the Packers released him because he failed a physical, it should not scare Chicago away from at least trying him out.
Phil Emery could stop Matt Light from retiring with New England Patriots
New Bears GM Phil Emery schooled with another highly respected executive named Scott Pioli. Some might remember him as the general manager who built the New England Patriots into a dynasty. Emery has great respect for what the Patriots do, which is why he likely has an ear close to their team activities. So he likely heard about the coming retirement of longtime left tackle Matt Light. An 11-year veteran out of Purdue, Light protected the blind side of Tom Brady through all five New England Super Bowl appearances since 2001. He has also reached four Pro Bowls. After another crushing loss to the New York Giants last season, Light decided his time in the trenches had ended. He plans to officially retire on May 7th. While his choice likely came after great debate, it shouldn't stop Emery from exploring a way to bring Light to Chicago. His experience in pass protection alone would give Cutler and new weapon Brandon Marshall a chance to thrive.
Great quarterbacks can't become great without protection. The Chicago Bears should have seen that when they traded for Jay Cutler. Now with Phil Emery in charge they can get it right. The Green Bay Packers and New England Patriots, two winning franchises, let their left tackles out the door. Chad Clifton and Matt Light may come across as old, but the leadership and championship experience they would bring might put the Chicago offense on the map for the first time in decades.