9:54 AM CDT, October 23, 2013
Remember how you feared former Bears general manager Jerry Angelo drafting offense?
Watch out, because now it looks like Phil Emery is having the same effect on the once-proud unit known as the Bears defense.
I guess that Halas Hall seat comes with an obstructed view.
It’s early in Emery’s run and the sample size is small, so it can easily straighten out. But the trend is not good.
With the Bears’ death-spiral defense adding more injuries to its previous refusal to be in the right spot and tackle, this seems like a good time to discuss whether Emery knows how to draft defense.
The worse the defense becomes and the more you see starters and backups who can’t play tackle football at this level right now, the more you begin to think Emery is the opposite of Angelo.
Emery seems to know offensive weapons and how they work with the talent the Bears already have, but it doesn’t look like he could find a defensive difference-maker at a Lawrence Taylor sentencing hearing.
So, people, here’s your homework assignment for the Bears’ off week: Compare and contrast Shea McClellin and Brandon Hardin -- Emery’s useless first No. 1 draft choice vs. Emery’s silly pre-injured third-round pick from the same draft.
McClellin is a joke as a starter on the defensive line. Hardin had two years to get healthy, but still couldn’t win a safety spot on one of the most safety-challenged teams in the league.
McClellin is too weak to play that position in this league. He was drafted to rush the passer, but he can’t. Emery’s first draft choice is being put in position to fail, and he has. Hardin came in after missing a college season because of injury, then missed a pro season because of injury, and is missing this season because he was cut because he’s bad.
That’s some choice. That’s some referendum on Emery’s drafting ability. And even if it’s not a complete referendum, then the early exit polling is laughable.
The defensive line and safety spots are the two biggest problems on a Bears defense death-spiraling to the worst in the league. This would’ve been the season that last year’s high draft choices could’ve shown some impact.
But no. Emery apparently has given the Bears nothing at important positions, or at least positions that contending teams consider important. Geez, just draft a defensive lineman who can apply pressure regularly. Every other team seems to.
I mean, how many guys have sacked Jay Cutler that you’ve never heard of?
Chris Baker? Did you know who Chris Baker was before he interrupted Cutler’s contract drive in Washington on Sunday?
Don’t lie to me. You did not know who he was. Liar, liar, pants on fire.
That kind of kind of player deodorizes bad safeties the way Julius Peppers used to before his apparently unannounced retirement. Now, the utter lack of pressure by the Bears front four exposes Major Wright and Chris Conte.
Wright and Conte got beat deep and underneath and down the seam in Washington. Every Redskin at least 20 yards downfield made contract bonuses, I believe. Most players study playbooks on an iPad, but it looks like Wright and Conte get their game plans from an Etch-A-Sketch.
The Bears are unconscionably bad defensively and injuries are making them worse. Lance Briggs is out for at least six weeks. There goes the only guy who could tackle anybody. Emery’s whiffs on high picks in his first try are gaping wounds that are helping the Bears bleed out.
It would be nice if Jon Bostic, this year’s second-round pick, could be a star, especially because he’s now forced to start, but he’ll make as many mistakes as flashy plays. Fear for him by the time Packers QB Aaron Rodgers finishes up a week from Monday.
Emery doesn’t think it’s as bad as I do. He said the Bears have "dust on the car’" and they’ve "stepped in an oil patch." Yes. Well. Are Emery’s Bears driving or walking? Or maybe it’s one of those Flintstone cars powered by Fred’s fat feet.
Whatever, the Bears have fallen and they can’t get up. New defensive coordinator Mel Tucker said he was going to retain Lovie Smith’s defense right down to the language. So, why does this look like Dave Wannstedt’s mess right down to John Thierry?
I’ll hang up and listen for another 13-play, 80-yard drive than eats up almost half of a quarter.
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