Camp Chatter: Tice, Cutler breaking barriers; Price debuts


Camp Chatter: Tice, Cutler breaking barriers; Price debuts

BOURBONNAIS, Ill. -- Offensive coordinator Mike Tice and quarterback Jay Cutler just dont speak the same language. Literally.

Hes from the South and Im from New York so he doesnt get my jokes much or understand much of my English, said Tice, who as a New Yorker clearly views Indiana as the South.

For instance, if theyre going to talk cars, Its not aw-toe, its ott-toe, Tice said.

Car talk isnt where Cutler and Tice need to be communicating, however. Specifics of the offense are and both sides are satisfied that theres a meeting of the minds developing.

Im trying to give him everything thats on my mind: what I dislike, what I like, what I love, what I hate, what I think is going to work, Cutler said. Thats why hes got a tough job.

Assuming Tice speaks Hoosier, the Bears should be fine. Mike Martz was not always receptive to Cutlers suggestions initially but Tice expressly asks for them.

We want to know what he likes, Tice said. I think its very important to have a line of communication with the quarterback and running back and the receivers.

Why call things that theyre not comfortable with? If were calling things theyre not comfortable with, theyre not going to make the right throws. If were calling runs the back doesnt like, hes not going to hit it up in there. If were calling routes that the receiver doesnt like to run, hes not going to run them with authority or confidence.

So I think its important across the board to have a great line of communication between the players and the coaches.

Price sees first action with Bears

Defensive tackle Brian Price spent his first day in pads since his trade to the Bears from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and it was a difficult one. Price, wearing No. 95, started well in some reps with the No. 2 defense but is clearly not yet in full football shape. He and backup center Edwin Williams had a brief bit of shoving after a pass-protection drill won by Williams.

Hopes are still very high for the former second-round pick, who is viewed as a potential impact player at both inside spots. We wont probably bring in a guy if he can only play nose, coach Lovie Smith said. You have to have some athletic ability. Im talking about 3-technique, under-tackle type ability and he has that.

Camp Notes

Cornerbacks Tim Jennings and Charles Tillman came up with interceptions in Tuesdays session.

Kahlil Bell provided Tuesdays top highlight when he did a vault and somersault into the end zone in a full-tackling goal-line period. Bell is facing a very stiff challenge to stick as the No. 3 running back over Armando Allen and Lorenzo Booker in particular.

Rookie defensive end Shea McClellin continued to struggle in pass rush, being handled first by left tackle JMarcus Webb, who was taking his day with the No. 1 unit, and then by rookie tight end Evan Rodriguez. McClellin had a little success against Chris Williams but Williams also had the upper hand in their reps.

In the kind of matchup the Bears would like anytime, Matt Forte was isolated on a linebacker and Cutler dropped a touch pass into his hands along the right sideline. The linebacker happened to be Lance Briggs, which wont make it a special moment in the defensive meeting room but Forte is one of the NFLs elite receivers out of the backfield.

The Commish in town

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is stopping by Bears camp Wednesday afternoon and will be part of a brief panel discussion with Bears Chairman George McCaskey and former coach and broadcaster John Madden.

Blackhawks Talk Podcast: Reacting to Round 1 of NHL Draft


Blackhawks Talk Podcast: Reacting to Round 1 of NHL Draft

On the latest Hawks Talk Podcast, Pat Boyle and Charlie Roumeliotis recap Round 1 of the 2018 NHL Draft.

They discuss the pair of puck-carrying defensemen that the Blackhawks selected on Friday, Adam Boqvist and Nicolas Beaudin. When can we expect to see these first-round picks play in the NHL?

Boyle also goes 1-on-1 with Boqvist and Beaudin. The guys spoke with Stan Bowman and Joel Quenneville on Friday.

The guys also share their biggest takeaways from those interviews, which includes your daily Corey Crawford update and Quenneville appeared excited that the team has plenty of cap space to spend in free agency.

Listen to the full episode at this link or in the embedded player below:

It's only one start, but that's the Lucas Giolito that White Sox fans expected to see this season


It's only one start, but that's the Lucas Giolito that White Sox fans expected to see this season

The preseason expectations and the results have been drastically different for Lucas Giolito.

Expected to be the best pitcher on the White Sox starting staff, Giolito hasn’t come too close to that title, instead heading into Friday’s doubleheader with the most earned runs allowed of any pitcher in baseball. His walk total has been among the highest in the game all year long, too. And the calls from social media to send him down to Triple-A haven’t been at all infrequent.

But Friday, White Sox fans got a glimpse at what they expected, a look at the guy who earned so much hype with a strong September last season and a dominant spring training.

It wasn’t a performance that would make any reasonable baseball person’s jaw drop. But it was the best Giolito has looked this season. He still allowed four runs on seven hits — as mentioned, not a Cy Young type outing — but he struck out a season-high eight batters. Prior to giving up the back-to-back singles to start the eighth inning that brought an end to his evening, he’d surrendered just two runs.

Most importantly he walked just two guys and didn’t seem to struggle with his command at all. That’s a big deal for a pitcher who had 45 walks to his name prior to Friday.

“You know it was a tough eighth inning, but throughout the whole game, I felt in sync,” Giolito said. “(Catcher Omar Narvaez) and I were working really well, finally commanding the fastball the way I should. Definitely the best I felt out there this year, for sure. Velocity was up a tick. Just felt right, felt in sync. Just competed from there.”

Confidence has never left Giolito throughout the poor results, and he’s talked after every start about getting back on the horse and giving it another try. Consistently working in between starts, things finally seemed to click Friday night.

“It all worked today,” manager Rick Renteria said. “(Pitching coach Don Cooper) says that every bullpen has gotten better, from the beginning to this point. He sees progress. The velocity that he showed today was something that Coop was seeing in his work. You can see that his delivery is continuing to improve. He was trusting himself, really attacking the strike zone, trusted his breaking ball today when he need to and just tried to command as much as he could. Did a nice job.”

Giolito went through this kind of thing last year, when he started off poorly at Triple-A Charlotte with a 5.40 ERA through his first 16 starts. But then things got better, with Giolito posting a 2.78 ERA over his final eight starts with the Knights before getting called up to the big leagues.

This was just one start, of course, but perhaps he can follow a similar formula this year, too, going from a rough beginning to figuring things out.

“I’m not trying to tinker or think about mechanics anymore,” he said. “It’s about flow, getting out there and making pitches. We were able to do that for the most part.

“I’ll watch video and see certain things, and I have little cues here and there. But I’m not going to go and overanalyze things and nitpick at certain stuff anymore. It’s about going there and having fun and competing.”

Maybe that’s the secret. Or maybe this is simply a brief flash of brilliance in the middle of a tough first full season in the bigs.

Whatever it was, it was the best we’ve seen of Giolito during the 2018 campaign. And it was far more like what was expected back before that campaign got going.