The Bears began the offseason with the task of re-fashioning their offensive line. They emerged from training camp and the preseason with four new starters from last season, "refashioning" by any definition.
But a difficult element of fourth preseason games is determining whether someone not playing means they are in as far as making the roster or if they are ticketed out of town….
The absences of guard/tackle Eben Britton and swing guard James Brown pointed to them being two of the anticipated eight linemen kept on the final roster. Britton and Brown were part of the field-goal unit only until Corey Brandon went down late with a knee injury.
J’Marcus Webb played the game at right tackle and should have dominated the caliber of player he faced. He did not. He did himself no good with a first-quarter false start, the kind of concentration issue that contributed to his problems over the past couple of seasons. He also allowed a QB pressure in the first half and another in the second that contributed to a sack of Trent Edwards….
[More trend-spotting: Close calls at multiple skill positions]
Brandon worked at left tackle, Derrick Dennis at left guard and Edwin Williams at right guard. Numbers and versatility of others make theirs a tight spot…. Unheralded Taylor Boggs got the whole game at center and may have earned himself a roster spot as depth behind Roberto Garza, or at the very least a place on the practice squad.
Trending: Offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer has indicated the possibility of going with just eight offensive linemen because of versatility in backups like Britton and Brown in particular. The Bears likely could release tackle Jonathan Scott, although with an injury settlement possibly, with the option of picking him up in-season, as they did last year.
Kromer’s eight could project to include tackles Britton, Jermon Bushrod and Jordan Mills; guards Brown, Kyle Long and Matt Slauson; and centers Boggs and Roberto Garza.