Brown “should be good to go”
September 21st, 2009 - 5:31 pm
Bears coach Lovie Smith said defensive end Alex Brown has “no more than” an ankle sprain and “should be good to go.”
Brown, the team’s most dependable end over the past seven years, injured his ankle in Sunday’s win over the Steelers and had to be helped off the field. It has been reported that he was given his helmet back late in the game, which means he probably could have gone back on the field had the Bears’ defense been needed.
Brown has never missed a game due to an injury in his career and said he will not miss any action.
“I won’t miss nothing,” Brown said. “Don’t worry about that.”
Knox will keep Aromashodu sidelined: The surprising play of rookie wide receiver Johnny Knox will have an adverse affect on at least one Bears player.
Devin Aromashodu, who supposedly was Jay Cutler’s preferred option during training camp and the preseason, may have lost his active roster spot on game days due to a quad injury he suffered during the first week of regular season practice.
The Bears have only dressed four receivers on Sundays and, thanks to Aromashodu’s injury, Knox was suited up in his stead against the Packers. A deep reception from Cutler against the Packers helped Knox start against the Steelers even though Aromashodu was healthy. With a solid role in the victory over Pittsburgh, Knox figures to not only remain active on Sundays, but also get a bigger role in the offense. The only ways that Aromashodu figures to be activated would be if he gets better on special teams and replaces Rashied Davis, Knox regresses as a receiver, or one of the receivers ahead of him suffers an injury. None of those options appear likely to happen.
Tight ends making up for marginal wide receivers: Phil Simms made a nice observation in Sunday’s telecast. Why is there so much talk about the lack of playmakers at wide receiver when the Bears have so many other weapons on offense?
Tight end Greg Olsen is the team’s number one receiver. Running back Matt Forte is a great option out of the backfield. When healthy, Desmond Clark is a reliable target in double-tight formations. And now backup tight end Kellen Davis provides an additional dimension to the offense.
Obviously, when Clark returns, that should mean less playing time for Davis. But the Bears will still dress three tight ends on Sundays, and if Davis continues to play well in Clark’s absence, he could see more action in the red zone, where a big target is ideal, when Clark returns to the lineup.
With all these different options, it shouldn’t matter if Knox, Devin Hester, and Earl Bennett are lower in Cutler’s progression.
Run game should make strides over next few weeks: When examining the success of the Bears’ run game over the first two weeks of the season, one might be inclined to panic. The Bears have averaged 64.5 yards per game on the ground through the first two weeks, second-worst in the league. But the 3-4 defense is typically difficult to run against, especially to the outside, and that is the scheme that the Bears faced against Green Bay and Pittsburgh. The Steelers were also the second-best run defense in the league in 2008.
Things should clear up considerably for Forte over the next two weeks. The Seahawks gave up 207 yards on the ground to San Francisco’s Frank Gore on Sunday, and should yield some openings to Forte this week. In Week 4, the Bears will face the Lions’ porous run defense which is currently the 23rd in the league, having given up an average of 134.5 yards per game through the first two weeks.