Inexperienced tackles holding their own in Bears' O


Inexperienced tackles holding their own in Bears' O

Thursday, Sept, 15, 2011Posted: 10:45 p.m.

By John Mullin Bears Insider Follow @CSNMoonMullin
Right tackle Gabe Carimi declared during this years NFL Scouting Combine that he considered himself the best of the tackles in this draft class. If you back it up, its not bragging.

And Carimi wasnt bragging.

I didnt feel out-matched, Carimi said. I feel like I can have a solid game against opponents.

The performances of Carimi and bookend partner JMarcus Webb, against two of the better defensive-end rushers in the NFC, were definitely not out-matched.

The record will show quarterback Jay Cutler sacked five times by the Atlanta Falcons defense. That record will not be the full story.

Only two of the sacks were directly traceable to failures on the offensive line, following a trend that began almost unnoticed last season when the O-line became a punch line and punching bag after the debacle against New York on national TV.

This becomes particularly significant for two crucial reasons:

Elite competition

The performances, particularly those of young tackles Carimi and Webb, came against Atlanta defensive ends John Abraham and Ray Edwards, who accounted for a combined 21 sacks in 2010.

They will face few more difficult end tandems this season.

I felt good, Webb said. My coaches and teammates felt good about me and supported me. Mistakes are going to be made and youve got to learn from it and give it your all the next time.

The next time comes Sunday in New Orleans against two defensive ends Jeff Charleston, Turk McBride who each have fewer career sacks than Edwards alone had last season.

Domino effect

The second major reason is because tackles who can handle their edges, without jury-rigging the protections to cover for or help, loom as perhaps the single biggest difference between the Mike Martz offense of 2010 (30th yardage, 21st in scoring) and the one that put 23 points against an Atlanta defense that ranked fifth in the league in scoring defense.

The ability of the tackles to handle Abraham, Edwards and reserve Lawrence Sidbury was vital in freeing Matt Forte to get out of the backfield and into the passing game. Indeed, 14 of Cutlers 32 pass attempts went to running backs and tight ends, two for TDs.

They played well; those guys played well, Cutler said. They have to continue to do well.

Can you hear me?

The noise of the Superdome has been amply chronicled. Theres certain parts of the field youre not going to be able to hear a thing, line coach Mike Tice.

The task, particularly for young players like Carimi and Webb (Roberto Garza and guards Chris Spencer and Chris Williams have a combined 234 NFL starts), is to dial down the angst that comes with not being able to hear. That situation is exacerbated for players out on edges.

The bottom line is youre not going to be able to hear crap, Tice said. Were going to get edgy. Hopefully on those plays where we get edgy, we get the ball out fast Hopefully there wont be too many of those.

Youve got to talk them off the roof. Its happened and itll happen long as footballs football. You just dont want to compound errors.

John "Moon" Mullin is's Bears Insider and appears regularly on Bears Postgame Live and Chicago Tribune Live. Follow Moon on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bears information.

Under Center Podcast: Jarrett Payton "My dad's legacy is still alive!"

USA Today

Under Center Podcast: Jarrett Payton "My dad's legacy is still alive!"

Host Laurence Holmes is live in Miami from Radio row for Super Bowl Week. Laurence is joined by WGN's and the late great Chicago Bear Walter Payton's son, Jarrett Payton as they discuss his father's impact on the league, losing his father in comparison to the Kobe Bryant's tragic death, and how the current Bears can improve.

(3:10) - The impact of the Walter Payton Man of the Year award

(6:33) - Compares losing his father to the Kobe Bryant tragedy

(11:53) - Being back in Miami

(13:55) - How can the Bears improve?

(19:20) - Relives the last Bears Super Bowl appearance in Miami

Listen here or in the embedded player below.

Under Center Podcast


Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari to host private event this Valentine’s Day in West Loop

USA Today

Jay Cutler and Kristin Cavallari to host private event this Valentine’s Day in West Loop

Former Bears QB and current reality TV husband Jay Cutler will be coming back to Chicago this Valentine’s Day. Cutler’s wife, long-time reality TV star Kristin Cavallari, will be hosting a private event at Uncommon James in West Loop and Cutler is coming along for the festivities. A must event for any fans of mid 2000’s football and MTV.

For $200 per guest, attendees will enjoy food and drink, a private shopping experience and a selfie station. The 3-hour event will also include a question and answer session with Cavallari and Cutler. There’s something for everyone!

Cavallarri is on the third season of her E! show “Very Cavallari” which follows her life and growing business. Uncommon James is a fashion, lifestyle and jewelry brand who opened their Chicago location last October. The flagship store is in Nashville, where Cavallari and Cutler reside with their children.

Cutler is seemingly less-interested in the spotlight than his wife. He isn’t particularly active on social media, with Cavallari posting pictures to an Instagram account for him, so any chance to hang out with the former Bears QB is a rare opportunity. According to Instagram, it looks like Cutler is becoming more involved with Cavallari’s business, designing and modelling a bracelet that doubles as a bottle opener. How very Cutler.

View this post on Instagram

Add jewelry designer to the resume @uncommonjames

A post shared by Jay Cutler (@ifjayhadinstagram) on

If you’re looking to convince skeptics to shell out for the event, here’s some incentive. According to, the average Bears ticket in 2014 during the middle of Cutler’s tenure on the team was $108 per person, not even including food and drink and access to whatever a selfie station is. So, you’re paying twice as much for a much closer look at Cutler (assuming the store is smaller than Soldier Field) and a chance to ask him and his wife a question! And food! Seems fair when you put it like that.

If you and the K-Cav to your J-Cut are looking for something to do together this Valentine’s Day, the event will be held at Uncommon James in the West Loop, 849 W Randolph St., from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on February 14th. 

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