Originally posted on Midway Illustrated  |  Last updated 6/23/13
Matt Forte was unexpectedly under-utilized in the Chicago Bears offense in 2012, finishing with less yards from scrimmage than at any other point in his career.  His overall impact was minimal in a year that he was expected to make perhaps his biggest impact in a Bears uniform.  That was just another reason why it was time to make a change on offense and with the coaching staff.  Forte is one of the most dynamic running backs in the NFL and he needs to be involved.  One aspect of Forte's skill set that makes him such a great runner is he patience when running to the outside and his ability to explode through the hole upon seeing day light.  Forte is not one of the fastest runningbacks in the NFL, but he has some of the best vision to the hole and acceleration.  As this play demonstrates the Bears have long been successful getting Forte outside out on the edges.  New offensive coordinator would be right to recognize this strength to the Bears' offense and including it in an outside zone scheme much like the Mike Shannahan and the Broncos ran so well with Terrell Davis.  Davis perfected it with the Broncos, and now the Texans, and Redskins run the same type of scheme.  It's that simple stretch run play that gives the RB two options, the option to take the ball outside, or to cut it back against the defense.  This play however is an outside power play with Webb and Spencer pulling in front of Forte.  Two lead blockers from the left side and Evan Rodriguez out in front from the I-formation.  A reach block from Lance Louis is supposed to cut off the backside linebacker, but he misses the block.  While he misses the block, the effort is enough to slow the backside pursuit and allow Forte to get the corner and turn it up field.  This type of play is something the Bears have excelled at throughout Forte's career.  He's had some of his best success as an outside runner and his biggest struggles on the inside.  His skill set is ideally suited to getting teams moving laterally and then attacking gaps as a result.  Getting Forte out on the edge on a play like this however could cause problems with Matt Slauson as Slauson is not an athletic pulling type of guard who can get out on the edge quickly enough to help Forte out.  This type of lateral movement is not something Slauson does well and will limit effectiveness in the run game.  The success of this play is how well blocked it is, no one really misses a key block.  Louis' block is enough but it shows how hard it is to get a reach block to the second level to cut of back side pursuit.  Even though this isn't a zone play, it is a play the Bears should keep in the playbook.     
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