Bears

Moon: Will the Bears pursue Shaun Rogers?

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Moon: Will the Bears pursue Shaun Rogers?

Thursday, Feb. 10, 2011
Posted 10:25 a.m. Updated 2:30 p.m.
By John Mullin
CSNChicago.com

The Cleveland Browns created a bit of a ripple when they released defensive tackle Shaun Rogers, who becomes an immediate unrestricted free agent by virtue of having at least four years of service.

The Bears are looking (always) to fortify the defensive line and Rogers has been a force throughout his 10 seasons. But the Bears making a play for Rogers would be a major surprise, for multiple reasons.

Rogers is a master at blocking kicks (ask long snapper Pat Mannelly) and at controlling areas on the line of scrimmage. But he is a classic two-gap tackle in the mold of Ted Washington when he was a Bear or Pat Williams in Minnesota, rather than a fit for a one-gap scheme similar to the one espoused by Lovie Smith and Rod Marinelli.

Rogers controls blockers so linebackers can run and make tackles, meaning that Lance Briggs and Brian Urlacher would no doubt go pick him up at the airport if he were coming. But his days as a rush threat are past, and the Bears are looking for more impact inside than theyve gotten from Tommie Harris and Marcus Harrison at this point.

Look for a trickle of players onto the market in the next couple of weeks before the Mar. 3 expiration of the collective bargaining agreement. But dont look for teams to rush into signings, of their own or others players, given the uncertain state of negotiations. No need to add players until theres more indication when and where the season is going.

More important, nearly 500 players are poised to hit the free-agency markets. It will be a buyers market, much to the disappointment of more than a few players.

Theres a lesson here...

Really nice to see former Bears center Jerry Fontenot and wifeStephanie at the Eggshell Caf in Northbrook Thursday. Jerry, one ofthe class individuals Ive had the pleasure to know and cover with thisteam, had that unmistakable glow that only comes from winning a SuperBowl, which he just helped the Green Bay Packers accomplish lastweekend as their assistant offensive line coach.

I did get to actually hold the trophy, for a little while, Jerry said, laughing. On the bus.

Jerry, who succeeded Jay Hilgenberg over the ball in 92, played 239games for the Bears, New Orleans Saints and Cincinnati Bengals, and hewas the Saints starting center when Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy wasNew Orleans offensive coordinator. Hes looking great and is having aball with a very, very good young offensive line up in Green Bay.

Best Jerry story: I happened to see Jerry, a good friend of actor BillPeterson (CSI, To Live and Die in L.A. and more), one evening up inPlatteville during a training camp. I think it was at the Dairy Queenthere on Rte. 151. He looked shaky.

You OK? I asked.

Oh, man, he said, shaking his head. Stephanies pregnant and I just took her to see the movie Seven.

Now, if youve seen Seven and remember how it ends, youll feel for Jerry.

Great guy. Good to see Stephanie and him doing well.

Lesson: Make sure you check out movie details before taking your lovely wife to one.

John "Moon" Mullin is CSNChicago.com'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.

Patrick Mahomes' injury will have direct impact on NFC North race

Patrick Mahomes' injury will have direct impact on NFC North race

The Kansas City Chiefs and the entire NFL universe nearly imploded Thursday night after reigning MVP Patrick Mahomes suffered a dislocated kneecap in the Chiefs' victory over the Denver Broncos.

It was hard to watch. Not only did it feel like the league was losing its top superstar, but the vision of Chiefs trainers popping Mahomes' right kneecap back into place was, well, unpleasant.

Speculation about how much time Mahomes will miss in 2019 spread like wildfire on Twitter. A range of three weeks to the rest of the season was suggested. After undergoing an MRI Friday, it appears Mahomes will be back sooner than later. He'll miss some games, but not the rest of the season, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Assuming Mahomes misses just three games, his absence will still have a massive ripple effect on the NFC North. Two of the Chiefs' next three games include the Packers and Vikings, both of whom the Bears are jockeying with for divisional supremacy. The Bears, meanwhile, face the Chiefs in Week 16 when all indications suggest Mahomes will be back to firing missiles all over the field.

It's great news that Mahomes avoided a serious injury. It's less than great news that his injury will only hurt Chicago's chances at a second-consecutive division title.

Here's to hoping Mitch Trubisky catches fire over the final 11 games and outduels his 2017 draft classmate in the penultimate game of the season.

Should the Chicago Bears trade for Melvin Gordon?

Should the Chicago Bears trade for Melvin Gordon?

The Chicago Bears running game has struggled mightily in 2019. In fact, it's been downright atrocious. Non-existent. Invisible. Nowhere to be found.

You get the point.

But a good running game has a lot of moving parts. Literally. Most notably, it requires a competent offensive line that consistently creates running lanes for the ball carrier, no matter who it is.

The Bears have a talented young running back on the roster in rookie David Montgomery. They invested a third-round pick on him and there's no indication the team has soured on his long-term projected despite a rough five-week span that's seen the former Iowa State star averaging just 3.3 yards per carry.

His struggles are more than just his own, however. He needs help from his offensive line. Most of his carries result in contact at or near the line of scrimmage, and for a first-year player who's still adjusting to life in the NFL, that just isn't a recipe for immediate success.

Here's the thing with the NFL, though: it's a 'what-have-you-done-for-me-lately league.' So if an upgrade can be had (at any position), the Bears have to at least consider it.

According to former Browns offensive lineman and current NFL Network analyst Joe Thomas, GM Ryan Pace should take a long and hard look at Chargers star, Melvin Gordon.

"I would love to see my Badger, Melvin Gordon, go to the Chicago Bears," Thomas said this week. "They're a team right now with a quarterback that's struggling a little bit. Matt Nagy would love to have a weapon like Melvin Gordon who's great not only running the football, but he's great catching the football out of the backfield.

"The type of weapon that he could be, the security blanket that he could be for Mitch Trubisky would be outstanding for this team. He would give Mitch Trubisky a lot of opportunities to get some easy completions, some throws out of the backfield to start boosting his confidence."

Not the worst idea in the world, but let's be honest: there's no way Pace is going to pull the trigger on a running back who's already expressed his desire to be paid among the elite players at his position despite production that simply doesn't put him on that level.

Sure, Gordon would be a fun and exciting addition for a Bears offense that needs a spark right now, but it's way too early to suggest Montgomery can't be that guy once the offensive line and overall flow of the offense improves.