The Chicago Bears have struggled along the offensive line for the past couple of seasons. But the powers-that-be remain committed to the current group of blockers.
Both coach Lovie Smith and G.M. Phil Emery said recently that they believe in the men under contract to open holes for running backs and to keep the various parts of quarterback Jay Cutler connected to his body.
“I’m very encouraged,” Emery said regarding the team’s wall of blockers, according to Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times. “We have two young players at offensive tackle that are both very talented. Both are big, physical players. They’re the kind of players that you’re looking for.”
The Bears have done nothing to address the line in free agency. On one hand, the salary cap limits a team’s ability to spend. On the other hand, there has to be something that a team that has struggled so much in that area can do.
What the Bears will do is trust the guys they have, including former first-round picks Chris Williams and Gabe Carimi, and left tackle J’Marcus Webb, who gave up 12 sacks last season.
“There are some things you have to do to help him out a little bit more at times, which we plan to do,” Smith said, per Jensen. “So you can make a case and throw out stats on what he did.”
You can, but not many Bears fans will be willing to do it. Instead, Bears fans will hope, and perhaps pray, that the stated faith in the team’s offensive line is part of a broader plan to dupe other teams into thinking the Bears won’t be targeting guards and tackles in the draft.