Dark horse Trestman now the man for Bears

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Dark horse Trestman now the man for Bears

Bears fans: You wanted an offensive fix? You got it. At least until they kick things off in September.

Marc Trestman, the dark horse from north of the border who emerged in the Bears head coaching search is the man who succeeds Lovie Smith as the 14th man to lead the league's charter franchise.

MORE: After long search, Bears name Trestman head coach

When he's introduced Thursday at 11 a.m. (the press conference can be seen on Comcast SportsNet and CSNChicago.com), it'll be a circuitous route to say the least. You need two hands to count the stops as the NFL's "Next Big Thing" until he apparently got tired of the waiting game to get the big break he's now realized. An eight-year "exile" to the Canadian Football League has now come full circle and we anxiously await Phil Emery's explanation as the guy no one gave two thoughts to back on New Year's Day becomes the man he'll hang his reputation on.

There's a brief path-crossing with Jay Cutler between Vanderbilt and the NFL, and that's where this decision will weight heaviest from this point forward. How will the two communicate? Will they be on the same page? In Trestman we'll see quickly if the two are on the same page, can co-exist and flourish together. If they can't -- figure Trestman has the longer leash.

RELATED: Marc Trestman career timeline

CSN's Kip Lewis learned Tuesday evening the bulk of the Bears' defensive coaching staff will be brought back. If Bob Babich and Rod Marinelli are too loyal to Smith, look at Jon Hoke to figure more prominently. It's one less thing for Trestman to concern himself with as he tackles this team's greater concern.

While one of the league's top defenses has been overlooked in this search, this hire is about the offense. It's about how the league has changed, and how Trestman -- out of the NFL for eight years -- can keep up, and stay a step ahead, of the NFL as we now know it. That's a whole lot different than even just eight years ago.

Blackhawks: Tommy Wingels fractures foot, will be ready for training camp

Blackhawks: Tommy Wingels fractures foot, will be ready for training camp

Tommy Wingels, who the Blackhawks acquired earlier this month, will miss 6-8 weeks after suffering a left-foot fracture during his offseason training. Team physician Dr. Michael Terry said in a statement that the Blackhawks, “anticipate a full recovery in 6-8 weeks and in time for training camp. We do not anticipate any long-term issues.”

The Blackhawks signed Wingels, a Wilmette native, to a one-year deal on July 1. Wingels will still be at this weekend’s convention.

Bears training camp preview: Three burning questions for the offensive line

Bears training camp preview: Three burning questions for the offensive line

With training camp starting next week, CSN Chicago’s Chris Boden and JJ Stankevitz are looking at three burning questions for each of the Bears’ position groups heading into Bourbonnais. Friday's unit: the offensive line. 

1. Will Kyle Long and Josh Sitton flip spots, and will it be effective?

One of the more intriguing storylines to come out of the Bears’ offseason program was the possibility of a Kyle Long-Josh Sitton guard swap, with Long moving from right to left and Sitton to left to right. The prevailing wisdom is that Long’s athleticism would be better suited for the pulls needed at left guard, while Sitton has made Pro Bowls at both positions. But is it prudent for the Bears to make this switch with Long still recovering from November ankle surgery and some nasty complications that came after it? He’s shown he’s skilled enough to already make one position switch on the offensive line (from right tackle to right guard), so there’s no reason to doubt he couldn’t handle another so long as he’s healthy. We’ll see where he is next week. 

“You want flexibility,” coach John Fox said. “You don’t want as much flexibility as we had to use a year ago because we had to play so many guys due to injury. But we’re messing around with (Sitton) and Kyle both playing opposite sides, whether one’s on the left, one’s on the right. We’ll get those looks in camp, we got plenty of time.”

2. Can Charles Leno Jr. capitalize on a contract year?

Leno has been a pleasant surprise given the low expectations usually set for seventh-round picks. He started every game in 2016, checking off an important box for John Fox — reliability. Whether Leno can be more than a reliable player at left tackle, though, remains to be seen (if the Bears thought he were, wouldn’t they have signed him to an extension by now?). He has one more training camp and 16 games to prove he’s worthy of a deal to be the Bears (or someone else’s) left tackle of the future. Otherwise, the Bears may look to a 2018 draft class rich in tackles led by Texas’ Connor Williams and Notre Dame’s Mike McGlinchey. 

“I know if I take care of my business out here, everything else will take care of itself,” Leno said. 

3. Will Hroniss Grasu survive the roster crunch?

A year ago, Grasu was coming off a promising rookie season and was in line to be the Bears’ starting center. But the Oregon product tore his ACL in August, and Cody Whitehair thrived after a last-minute move from guard to center. If the Bears keep eight offensive lineman this year, Grasu could be squeezed out: Leno, Long, Whitehair, Sitton and Bobby Massie are the likely starters, with Eric Kush and Tom Compton filling reserve roles. That leaves one spot, either for fifth-round guard Jordan Morgan or Grasu. The Bears could try to stash Morgan, who played his college ball at Division-II Kutztown, on the practice squad and keep Grasu. But Grasu doesn’t have flexibility to play another position besides center, which could hurt his case.