Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Mike Tice is standing firm behind his words that the battle at left tackle will be a fierce on and that the position is “wide open”.
This was anticipated however, as many figured the most intense battle of camp would be at the left tackle position. Incumbent J’Marcus Webb is currently listed first on the depth chart but Tice let it be know that it’s just a formality.
“It’s not [Webb's] job to lose.
Chris Williams, Chicago’s first round draft choice in 2008, is in direct competition with Webb for the starting spot. Williams however, is a guard and he’s been playing there for the past few seasons.
But the brutal abuse Jay Cutler endured last season on his blindside was more than enough to convince Tice that a change or an upgrade in play was severely needed.
It was also Webb’s NFL leading 15 penalties on the line that prompted Tice to say step it up or step aside.
“I know they can both run-block but we’re not going to go out and run the ball 50 times a game. If they can’t protect then they can’t play for us.”
With new weapons Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery on board this year, Tice understands that Cutler needs time and peace of mind to effectively utilize them.
So far in camp, Webb has been struggling with penalties still and Williams has been low key. But low key and effective may do the trick. There is no quarterback contact in camp but Cutler doesn’t need it to draw upon nasty memories of the abuse he endured in 2011.
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