Bears Lose Game, Promising Rookie

The Bears lost their final preseason game last night, to the Cleveland Browns 19-9. Something else they lost that is probably much more important: rookie TE Greg Olsen, with a sprained knee.

The starters played just a few plays on offense, and a few more than that on defense. Special teams were fair to poor, giving up a turnover for a safety and making a penalty. But it was clear they didn’t care about this game at all, since their roster is nearly set, and they are already watching tape on their first opponent of the regular season, the San Diego Chargers. As well they should.

On the list of Things to Worry About, I would say the running game looks anemic so far. The O line doesn’t seem to be clearing any holes for anybody; maybe they’re getting too old. And Rex Grossman’s decisions continue to confound; he must keep turnovers to a minimum.

On the plus side, rookie RB Garrett Wolfe from Northern Illinois looked good, faking a few different defenders completely out of their jocks, and gaining some nice yards on short passes. QB Kyle Orton looked pretty good in extended time; he seems to have zip on his passes that he didn’t have in ’05. I have to wonder if he might not be the best choice, long term, for this team. And Rex Grossman didn’t make any turnovers in his three plays.

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