I was ecstatic when the Bears were in a position to draft Vanderbilt’s Chris Williams this year. After Jerry Angelo basically neglected drafting offensive linemen in his tenure, the Bears found themselves in 2007 with an absolute dearth of young talent on the line. This was one small step in the right direction.
But Williams has yet to practice with back spasms, and we will enter the season with John St. Clair as our starting left tackle. St. Clair has filled in admirably at both guard and tackle since coming to the Bears in 2005. But like Shane Matthews, Chris Chandler or Brian Griese, there is a difference between a great backup and a good starter. We don’t want St. Clair starting.
Now starting left guard Terrence Metcalf is hurt and probably won’t be back by the start of the season. The names of Metcalf’s replacements being thrown around: Anthony Oakley, Josh Beekman, Tyler Reed, Kirk Barton certainly do not inspire confidence.
The closer we get to the season with a woeful offensive line, mediocre at very best wide receivers, rookies and injured players at running back and the same problems at quarterback the Bears have had since the 1950′s make me very, very bearish about the 2008 season. And I don’t mean that in a good way.
Reminds me of the lines from 2002-2004: Quasim Mitchell at left tackle, Aaron Gibson at right, guards like Steve Edwards and Kevin Dogins at guard. Those are not happy thoughts.
I hope I’m proven wrong.