Chicago Bears Preseason: Five Things To Look For

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Defensive Tackle

Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

In addition to the poor safety play, the Chicago Bears defense really struggled against the running game. Everyone was gashing the middle of the Bears defensive line. When I mean everyone, I mean second and third string running backs were getting 100+ yards. I think if they put in 100 fans off the street to run against that line, 10 of them might have gotten 100 yards. This was one bad line.

The Bears invested two consecutive rounds in this year’s draft on defensive tackle. They drafted Ego Ferguson in the second round and Will Sutton in the third round. They also re-signed Jay Ratliff.

Ratliff and Stephen Paea are listed as the starters in the middle. Sutton is slotted to back up Ratliff at defensive tackle, and Ferguson will back up Paea at nose tackle.

Ferguson may be the key here. Paea is an injury risk, so Ferguson may get a chance to start eventually. Ratliff is also coming back from injury, but he got his time in last season, and looks healthy. Either way, with Nate Collins also in the mix, and the fact that newcomers Lamarr Houston and Willie Young can also play the interior, the middle of the line looks to be solidified and we won’t see many more of those third string running backs gashing the line.