Jay Cutler is a tough S.O.B. - with that said, the Bears need to improve their pass protection if they want to continue this hot streak that they are on. It's one thing that is keeping this offense from taking the next step, and if they don't want to experience Todd Collins throwing those 15 yard dig routes, they better put a better emphasis in protecting Jay and not allowing him to take a lot of those Frank Zombo shots. This offensive line's next test will be against a Giants defensive line that can throw different types of pass rushers at you. We know the usual suspects with Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora, but they also have a pretty good player in Mathias Kiwanuka who is a starter opposite of Tuck, and some young talent they can rotate in, in Jason Pierre-Paul. Although the Bears struggled in that Monday night game against the Packers, they did improve a bit in the second half. If the Bears want to showcase an explosive offense this Sunday night, this line needs to carry that performance on against the Giants.
Kiwanuka is no Clay Matthews, but he's an all around good defensive end that Omiyale will have his hands full with. For Omiyale, he has to be on his best game as far as instincts and lateral quickness to be able to contain Kiwanuka. I expect to see some chip blocking on Omiyale's side from the running back, but Tice will be counting on Omiyale to hold his own against Kiwanuka. The reason for that is because Manumalena and Olsen will be needed to help Shaffer out against Tuck from time to time.
A wash of a match-up in my opinion, as I feel Garza has the ability to contain Canty and not get overwhelmed. Canty is not that good of a pass rusher so Garza needs to take advantage of that. Our interior line needs to create a clean pocket for Jay to step into his throws.
Kreutz will have the job of helping both Garza and Louis if they need it, and also be able to pick up stunts in blitzes that will be headed in his direction.
RG Lance Louis vs. DT Barry Cofield
Lance Louis has been making good improvements in pass protection, and actually graded out well in the past game against the Packers. He will need to carry that into this game against a pretty good veteran DT in Barry Cofield. Just like Canty, Cofield is used more as a run stuffing DT than a pass rushing DT. That doesn't necessary mean Louis will have a good day in pass protection, as Cofield is an experienced Vet that can make Louis pay for his lack of experience on some plays.
RT Kevin Shaffer vs. LE Justin Tuck/Osi Umenyiora
Shaffer played pretty good against Matthews, but I still expect Tice to give Shaffer some help against a still pretty good pass rusher in Tuck. Kevin Shaffer will need to take away Tuck's inside move and also do a good job pushing him out of the play when he rushes outside. He's going to get plenty of help, but he also can't be to relying on it and has to be able to win some one on one battles with Tuck.
While Chester Taylor has been good at picking up those corner blitzes, Forte seems to struggle at it. That's something that needs to improve as the Giants like to send Blitzes on third downs sometimes in 3 man fronts.
Can you say bizzaro world? Greg Olsen so far has been the better blocking TE of the two, while Bran-Man has been struggling mightily and so far looking like a free agent bust. On the bright side, he did seem to be turning the corner in the Monday night game against the Packers. Let's see if he can carry that into Sunday's match-up against the Giants Defensive Ends and Linebackers.