Another frustrating night at Lambeau Field for the Chicago Bears showed their offense only goes so far as their offensive line can take them. Should Phil Emery and the front office make Jake Long or Ryan Clady targets?
Jay Cutler let down by tackles J'Marcus Webb and Gabe Carimi
Every level of the Bears offense failed on Thursday night against Green Bay. Another impressive defensive effort got wasted because of dropped passes, dumb penalties, poor route running and bad blocking. Quarterback Jay Cutler deserves his share of the blame. He threw four interceptions in a winnable game. However reasons for the loss have to start up front with the offensive line. Chicago struggled to handle All-Pro linebacker Clay Matthews all night. Left tackle J'Marcus Webb did not seem to play with urgency and Cutler let him know it by bumping and yelling at him on the sideline. Right tackle Gabe Carimi had his share of problems blocking but none of it was as bad as his poorly timed 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness. It came on a play when he was clearly hit after the whistle but he made the mistake of retaliating. The blunder killed a promising Bears drive and was pretty much the signature play of the night. One must remember though that Webb and Carimi are 24-years old. They are very young tackles playing against a defense known for its aggressiveness. While Chicago will likely stay patient with them, should the team consider going after a veteran upgrade?
Long and Clady spots depend on Miami Dolphins and Denver Broncos
Two players locked in contract talks headed are Jake Long of the Miami Dolphins and Ryan Clady of the Denver Broncos. Both are Pro Bowl left tackles expected to hit free agency unless their teams muster up extensions. Early signs say the Broncos were more active to keep Clady since they offered him a five-year deal but talks fell apart before the preseason. It's hard to say who ended the talks but Clady has leverage. He hasn't missed a game for over two seasons. He is 25-years old and will have many options if he hits free agency. Given his history with Cutler from his time in Denver the Bears are certainly one of them. However the biggest mystery is Long. Unlike the Broncos, Miami is in a state of transformation. They have a new head coach in Joe Philbin and could have a new general manager if Jeff Ireland gets fired based on rumors out of South Beach. One of his few major draft hits was Long. His future with the team is also unclear. Injuries have hampered his last couple seasons. Mixed with the fact he doesn't fit the new style of offense Philbin runs and its little wonder why Miami hasn't pushed very hard to give him an extension. This could mean he hits the market next year and for Chicago it could also mean the Dolphins might look for a trade.
Either Ryan Clady or Jake Long are easily better than J'Marcus Webb. The Chicago Bears trust Gabe Carimi will make better decisions in the future but their left tackle spot must get fixed. It all depends on if the Miami Dolphins or Denver Broncos aren't willing to pay.
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