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Thursday Links Package

| May 28th, 2020


This is the quietest time on the football calendar, the lull between the the NFL Draft and the start of training camps. So here’s some stuff worth reading. Read it, don’t, I don’t care.

  • Dan Pompei’s excellent piece detailing the battle scars of Kyle Long is a painful NFL read. One of the things that has often surprised me is the general obliviousness many fans have when it comes to the physical toll football takes on the bodies of these young, strong men. None of those fans will look at the game the same way after reading this staggering work.
  • The Bears were very good on defense in 2019. But they weren’t good enough to compensate for a putrid offense. Adam Jahns breaks down the Robert Quinn signing and just how good that unit will need to be to return to the postseason in January.
  • Is Cole Kmet a Y? Is he a U? Is he some other letter? Here’s what I know: he’s an impressive young man with whom the coaches are already in love. Adam Hoge at NBC Sports Chicago discusses his early days as a Bear and where he’ll fit in the 2020 offensive structure.
  • The Arlington Hambright Section!
  • From Mark Potash’s piece on Roquan Smith in the Sun-Times: “Despite the issues he has had in his first two seasons, Smith has been as good as advertised. His sideline-to-sideline speed, his instincts and his versatility — the ability to rush the quarterback, be a tackling machine and defend in coverage — give him a dangerous skill set for an inside linebacker. So far, he’s clearly general manager Ryan Pace’s best first-round pick. But by the eye test and Smith’s own testimony, he has a lot more to give.”

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Turn the Beat Around: Thoughts From Those Paid to Cover the Bears

| August 15th, 2016

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JAHNS ON DEIONDRE’ HALL

Hall was a standout in Thursday’s preseason opener and Adam breaks down the physical traits that make him a fit for this defense.

At 6-2 and 201 pounds, Hall fits Fangio’s preference for big cornerbacks. He also played on the first kickoff unit against the Broncos.

His arm length, like an offensive tackle’s, makes him special. Assistant secondary coach Sam Garnes said Hall’s rules for technique differ because of it.

“[It’s] eyes, hands and feet, and then just staying patient,” Hall said. “I’m longer than pretty much everybody else out there, so I’ll be able to get my hands on a lot quicker.”

Hall said becoming a cornerback who excels in press coverage is a process, but he already was able to show Thursday how useful his long arms can be.

CAMPBELL ON FULLER 

Kyle Fuller is dealing with a nagging knee injury and isn’t with the team in New England. Rich pries into the enigmatic Fuller, analyzing his status with a hierarchy not responsible for drafting him.

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Audibles Deuce: Negativity After One Week, Briggs Out to Sea, Parcells & “Orientals”

| September 10th, 2014

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NEGATIVITY OVERLOAD

Let me point you in the direction of two Tweets, both catching my eye in the last twenty-hour hours.

First…

Up with to look for Bears silver linings at 6 a.m. on . Think it might be a short conversation?

Second…

Does think the season is still salvageable? 9:52

Looking for silver linings? Salvageable? The Bears have played one game this season, a game where they were clearly the better team but made ridiculous mistakes, and the default response of seemingly everyone covering the club is defeatist. These sad tones or moods or whatever you want to call them osmotically transfer from newspaper pages, radio waves and television screens directly into the hearts and minds around the Chicagoland.

I’ve come to terms with the media covering the Bears. They prey upon the inherent desire of Bears fans to go negative by feeding the negative beast. But I applaud the fan who believes. I applaud the fan who’ll be sitting on a bar stool or couch Sunday evening believing the Bears will beat the 49ers and set their 2014 back on the right path. I applaud the fan who understands, win or lose, watching the Chicago Bears play their 16 guaranteed games a season is still one of life’s greatest joys.

Many don’t realize until it’s too late in life but what I’m about to say is true. Being negative is easy. Being jaded is a cop out. It is the people who put themselves out there and believe – in their lives, careers, sports teams, anything – who experience the great joys in life.

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Rob Rang’s Draft Grades, Pompei on UFAs & Jordan Lynch

| May 13th, 2014

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 I’M NOT ONE FOR DRAFT GRADES…

…but I gathered a lot of respect for Rob Rang when he released his final mock draft and was the only analyst out there projecting four safeties to the first round. So I was interested to see what he felt of the Bears selections. He likes em. A lot.

For a team that once prided itself for its defense, the Bears were toothless in 2013. General manager Phil Emery did a nice job of patching holes throughout the draft, however, adding a pro-ready corner in Kyle Fuller at No. 14 overall, a talented 1-2 punch at defensive tackle in run-stuffer Ego Ferguson and one of the top penetrators in Will Sutton and one of the more intriguing safeties in the class in Brock Vereen in the fourth. The Bears added insurance behind star Matt Forte with Ka’Deem Carey, who plays faster than he timed and is a strong, determined runner. Watch out for Day Three developmental prospects in quarterback David Fales and offensive lineman Charles Leno, each of whom could surprise in Marc Trestman’s scheme. Fuller and Ferguson come with some medical nicks and Sutton allowed himself to get out of shape in 2013. On paper, though, this ranks as one of the year’s best groups.

Here is what needs to happen for this Bears draft to be successful. Fuller is solid. One of the two defensive tackles sticks. Vereen contributes.

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