The Bears Twitter account getting hacked 34 years to the day of their first, last, and (to this date) only Super Bowl victory is not the anniversary present anyone had in mind.
On this date in 1986 …
— Chicago Tribune Sports (@ChicagoSports) January 26, 2020
Higher quality video. pic.twitter.com/oUrBzsn3WE
— This Day in Chicago Sports (@ChiSportsDay) January 26, 2020
Here’s to the next one (whenever that might be).
- A peek behind the curtain: I found myself fixated on quarterbacks on the Senior Bowl when I started writing this set of Bullets. But it kept going … and going … and going … so I decided to break them off into a separate post. After all, the Senior Bowl isn’t all about this draft class’ top quarterbacks.
- The Bears have a tight end problem. So while the players at that position group reportedly had a strong week of practice, they weren’t targeted much in the passing game. That was a bit of a bummer, but that just meant they had to come through in a different way. For example, take Adam Trautman (Dayton) delivering pancake blocks on a Saturday afternoon:
- Trautman (who also met with the Bears this week) is a bit more polished than the last “Adam” the Bears drafted at tight end who happened to play his college ball in Ohio. As far as I am concerned, the similarities between the two start and end with their first names and the state in which their university was located.
- On the defensive side of the ball, edge rusher Bradlee Anae (Utah) had a day:
Bradlee Anae is terrorizing the South offensive line at the #SeniorBowl
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) January 25, 2020
- Anae was all over the backfield with pressures, hurries, hits, and sacks. Here’s hoping the Bears don’t have any hangups regarding possibly drafting a pass-rusher from Utah just because the last one they took (Kylie Fitts, who was also a Senior Bowl standout) flamed out before the expiration of his rookie deal.
- On the other side of the line, I didn’t love what I saw from the South’s offensive tackles. Alex Taylor (South Carolina), Terence Steele (Texas Tech), and Calvin Throckmorton (Oregon) struggled to contain the rush from their North counterparts. But in the interest of fairness, Throckmorton was a late add to the Senior Bowl and is a guard by trade who had no prior experience at left tackle. Clearly, that isn’t going to be the spot for him at the next level.
- I’ll say this about Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy, the guy is honest with his football assessments:
The offensive linemen are struggling in the @seniorbowl. Jim Nagy told me TWICE this group was not as good as last years’ group. If #Falcons reach for an offensive linemen at 16, there’s going to be a riot in Flowery Branch.
— D. Orlando Ledbetter (@DOrlandoAJC) January 25, 2020
- Even if this offensive line group isn’t what last year’s group was, I wonder if that means there is an opportunity to draft someone later who could be a value down the line. Left guard and center are positions that are manned by solid performers. And while the tackle spots could probably use some work, the salary cap component connected to the contracts of Charles Leno Jr. and Bobby Massie will probably keep them in a Bears uniform through 2020. But beyond finding a right guard, Chicago would be wise to find a tackle prospect who can use 2020 as a redshirt year for development purposes.
- Running back isn’t a top priority for the Bears, but the team could use some depth behind David Montgomery and ahead of Tarik Cohen. Perhaps Antonio Gibson (Memphis) could be that guy? Gibson (11 carries, 68 yards) was a junior college transfer, so he never crossed paths with Anthony Miller. But the Tigers used him in a unique way, making sure he got the ball as a rusher (33 carries, 369 yards, 4 TD) and receiver (38 catches, 735 yards, 8 TDs). Upgrading the bottom of the running backs depth chart with a multi-faceted player could be helpful.
- Van Jefferson (Florida) was another player who caught my eye on Saturday. A friend of mine who is a Florida Gators backer put Jefferson on my radar prior to the Senior Bowl. And while Jefferson had just two catches for 11 yards, he also showed some skills as a punt team gunner. The Bears’ special teams unit was better in 2019 than it was in 2018, but could still stand to add players who could do dirty work on the third phase. Jefferson could fit the bill as a late-round receiver/special teams ace that helps improve the bottom half of the roster.
- WAIT. Lions coach Matt Patricia has a personality?
Matt Patricia saw Bill Belichick and Josh McDaniels at the Senior Bowl practice.
"I'm mic'd. I'm mic'd. I'm mic'd, so don't say anything," he said. pic.twitter.com/otMPItLDB5
— Brad Galli (@BradGalli) January 22, 2020
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) January 25, 2020
Love me some Matt Patricia pic.twitter.com/HLXHwvAY6H
— Cover 1 (@Cover_1_) January 25, 2020
- The game ended on a 50-yard field goal off the foot of Tyler Bass. I don’t want to open up old wounds by talking about the kicking game, but the Bears would be wise to bring in some competition for Eddy Piñeiro, if only to keep him sharp and pushing forward.
- I was wondering where Eric Berry was this year:
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) January 25, 2020
- I feel as if we have been down the road before on Eric Berry-Bears connections. But I would be lying to you if I didn’t take a moment to think about what a secondary featuring Berry and Eddie Jackson would look like in 2020.