The Bears had one of their better offensive performances this past Sunday against the Vikings. I highlighted in last week's WCG Key Match-Up that in order for the Bears to win against the Vikings, Jay has to basically be Jay and not Kyle Orton circa 2008. Jay was Jay last Sunday and the credit has to go to the offensive line for giving Cutler the time in the pocket and not giving up when he rolled outside it. I was a little concerned about this line coming into this game because even though they played well against Buffalo, there is a reason why they claimed Shawne Merriman off waivers. Vikings have two outstanding defensive ends and for the most part our tackles kept them quiet. The Vikings has two pretty good defensive tackles and Chris Williams, Olin Kreutz, and Roberto Garza almost never allow them to get close to Jay. Arguably the best offensive line performances this season form a group that Jamie Dukes called "The worst offensive line in the history of football".
LT Frank Omiyale: Grade A-
Call me crazy, but this really wasn't the match-up that concerned me going into Sunday. When I do catch Vikings games, I notice that Allen usually struggles against the more athletic tackles in the league. Outside of the sack and the QB hurry allowed, Omiyale had a very solid game against a top 5 defensive end in this league.
Best Play: Omiyale's best play of the game came on a play where Jay didn't complete the pass to Bennett, but you noticed on that play that Omiyale handled Allen one on one. It also highlighted how much confidence Tice and Martz have in Omiyale to line him up one on one with a premiere defensive end like Allen.
LG Chris Williams: Grade B
Chris Williams got a lot of help from Kreutz against Pat Williams, but in my opinion this was his best game of the season at that LG position. Yes, I am still driving the bandwagon that Chris can potentially become a pretty good starting LG. He's showing good instincts inside as far as pass blocking, but he still needs work in the run blocking department but he's not awful at it.
Best Play: Hard to locate Williams' best play considering he got a lot of help against Pat Williams, but if I had to pick one, it would be the play action pass TD to Kellen Davis on 3rd & inches simply because the DT on those plays was bull rushing, and the pressure inside can make the QB throw a bad pass. Chris did a good job standing his ground against Kevin Williams on that play that gave Jay time to deliver the ball to Davis.
C Olin Kreutz: Grade A
Kreutz had a really good game against the Williams wall, and he and Chris Williams completely took Pat Williams out of the game.
RG Roberto Garza: Grade A+
I question whether Garza still had it in him to block better defensive ends one on one without much help, and he responded big against the Vikings best defensive tackle Kevin Williams. Kreutz helped out a little, but for the most part, Garza was one on one against Kevin and stepped up to the challenge.
Best Play: Garza had many good plays in the game, but the one that stood out to me was on the play where Bennett drops a tough pass in the endzone. Garza put Williams on his back. I know it should have been a holding penality on Garza, but that particular play showed me how much intensity he had going into this game.
RT J'Marcus Webb: Grade C+
Webb had his ups and downs in this game, but his ups leave hope for future stability on this offensive line going forward this season and into the next one. The bone-headed mistakes were obviously mental with some holding penalties while the offense is driving and gaining momentum. He also had a foolish false start penalty on second and 1 that, maybe for an elite offense is not a big deal, but with an offense that has been struggling to click it is.
Best Play: Webb's best play of the game was on the touchdown toss to Olsen in the second quarter on 3rd and 4. Webb delivered a vicious hand punch on Edwards and when Edwards went into a counter spin move Webb had enough awareness to box him out and give Jay more time to hit Olsen in the middle of the goal line for the TD. Love this guy's potential.