On Sunday, the Cleveland Browns are on the road as they take on the Chicago Bears. To help preview a few topics from the Bears’ perspective, we reached out to Jacob Infante of Windy City Gridiron and exchanged five questions with him. Enjoy!
Chris: “The Bears have really minimized the attempts for Mitch Trubisky at times this year. Browns fans look at DeShone Kizer and say, "Zero chance this guy is our QB of the future." Obviously there is a lot more investment that the Bears have placed in Trubisky, but what early assessment do fans have on him?”
Jacob: “Obviously, there's still a lot of work to be done with Trubisky, but there is a lot in his game to be excited about. His short- to intermediate-pass accuracy has been impressive, as it was on tape in college. He has also displayed impressive arm strength and, for the most part, good decision making. What has really impressed me, though, is his athleticism. I knew he was a good athlete coming out of the draft, but he has really been effective at extending the play with his feet. His mechanics - his footwork, in particular - need some improvement, but that can be fixed with time.”
Chris: “I didn't think there was an NFL team with a worse wide receiving group than the Browns, but Chicago might take the cake on that. What type of formations does Chicago run -- 1 receiver sets all the time with a bunch of running backs and tight ends? Because it looks like that, based on the stats.”
Jacob: “The formations they run on running downs have been extremely frustrating, because a lot of the time it's either a bunch set or a multiple tight end set. Defenses have been able to read that easily over the year. Their pass plays tend to have multiple receivers, but Dowell Loggains doesn't typically run anything resembling a spread offense. They usually run a lot of bunch sets and single back sets on offense.”
Chris: “Does John Fox get to return for 2018?”
Jacob: “If there was even a slight chance of that happening, it went out the window when the Bears lost their tenth game of the year, marking his third consecutive season with double-digit losses. The truth is, this Bears team would be a lot better with a competent coaching staff. Not only is Fox gone at the end of the year, but I wouldn't be surprised if we see an overhaul of just about the entire coaching staff this offseason.”
Chris: “Who is the strength of the Bears' offensive line, and who is the weakness?”
Jacob: “The strength of the Bears' offensive line has to be their interior. Josh Sitton has been playing quite well, and Cody Whitehair, despite a rough start to the season, has been great in recent weeks. Although Kyle Long had been playing hurt before he got sent to injured reserve, he is one of the better players on the team when healthy. The weakness is probably the offensive tackle spot, specifically the right tackle position. Charles Leno Jr. is a solid option at left tackle, but he's not a world beater by any means. Bobby Massie has his moments, too, but he has been far too inconsistent this season. He's not necessarily a lock to come back to the team next season.”
Chris: “Tell us about one player who Browns fans might not know about, but who has made some nice contributions to the Bears this season.”
Jacob: “Adrian Amos has been surprisingly good as Chicago's strong safety this year. He lost the starting spot to Quintin Demps to start the year, but he took over when Demps fractured his forearm in Week 3. Since then, Amos has surpassed expectations in the defensive backfield. He has been very good at stopping the run, and he has been solid in coverage, as well. He has missed the past three games due to injury, but he has reportedly been practicing in full this week, which means that he will look to cause the Browns fits this Sunday.”
Thanks again to Jacob for taking the time to answer my questions.