What's next for Jerry Angelo and Lovie Smith?

So far this off-season Jerry Angelo and Lovie Smith have did a solid job of addressing the needs of the Bears. Picking up Gabe Carimi in the 1st round was a good start to rebuilding a line that was downright the worst in all of football. DT Stephen Paea is an answer to improving the Bears interior pressure that has been missing since 07. FS Chris Conte is good insurance Policy for Chris Harris whose contract expires next year and QB Nathan Enderlee and LB J.T. Thomas address the depth problems the Bears had at those positions. Even though the Bears have address some glaring needs on their team, most fans including myself still have questions with this team. I applaud Angelo for not reaching for interior lineman late in the draft, but at the same time it's a position of need that needs to be address in Free Agency. We fans still don't know what their plan is as far as the #2 starting Cornerback as Tim Jennings is best as the 4th CB in dime packages. Wide Receiver is also an area of need, as Angelo saw most of his projected top WR's fly off the board in the 1st and 2nd rounds of the draft.

Yes the Bears address some positions area of concerns, but not all of them. Here's my area of concerns with the team at its current state and my assumptions on how they will fix these issues.

Even with the acquisition of OT Gabe Carimi, the Bears still have work to do along the O-line.

 

Both starting OT positions seem to be set with this year's first round Gabe Carimi and last year RT J'Marcus Webb. There are still question marks at all 3 interior line positions as the starters at the positions are declining or just not starter quality and the reserves behind them are just not that good. I would say the two guys fans should have some hope for are Chris Williams and Herman Johnson. Chris Williams although not the punishing run blocker that OL coach Mike Tice wants in his OL; he's a good pass blocker at the LG position. Herman Johnson has all the ability to become a solid starting RG, but just needs the opportunity. I expect the Bears to address one of the Guard positions with a Veteran in Free Agency. If the NFL establishes a new CBA, a guy like Atlanta Falcons LG Justin Blalock or Tampa Bay's LG Davin Joseph would be immediate upgrades at the position. If the NFL lifts the lock out and they go by the same rules as last year then San Francisco 49ers OG/C David Baas could get strong consideration.

Wide Receiver is still an area of concern

I believed the Bears had Austin Pettis or Vincent Brown in mind for that 3rd round selection instead of FS. Leonard Hankerson, Austin Pettis, and Vincent Brown went off the board that was pretty much as far as addressing WR in the draft. The Bears might be better off getting a veteran Wide Out anyway as they are already developing young receivers on the roster in Johnny Knox, Earl Bennett, and Devin Hester. When teams are allowed to sign Free Agents, I expect the Bears to strongly pursue Jets WR Braylon Edwards and when I mean strongly pursue, I mean he might be their #1 target of all the free agents available. I also don't count out targeting Vikings WR Sidney Rice who will be the best available at the position, but the Bears might opt to take a cheaper option so they have enough money to address other areas on the team. In Conclusion Bears fans should expect a new WR on the depth chart.

What will they do about the #2 cornerback position?

This is a position I feel the Bears will ignore in Free Agency simply because they are high on last year 5th round draft pick Joshua Moore and they haven't completely shut the door on Zackary Bowman who the two might compete for that job. I always felt the Bears didn't have CB as a top priority in the draft despite the fans and media concern at the position. Bowman or Moore looks like they will be the starter along with veteran Charles Tillman.

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