I think it’s very easy to say that the Bears woes Friday night was mostly due to 14 players being ineligible. And granted with 4 of those are likely starters on the OLine, which would’ve helped create some holes in the running game.
The thing that I noticed was a hint of predictability in the plays. You either had a Tyler Boyd or Robert Boatwright run, or either Clifford, Ford, or Boyd looked for the long ball. The intermediate or short passing game was nonexistent. Maybe it was game 1 woes/jitters but most of the long passes seemed to have far too much air under the ball, which allowed the defensive back to get back into the play and tip the ball away. Even WR screens looked off w/ one of the passes sailed about 5 yards over Boyds head.
One of the plays that left me shaking my head was on a 4th and 4. Why heave the ball down the field hoping for a big play when there was a player wide open underneath? Get the 1st down and then worry about getting points on the board.
Another concern has to be presnap penalties. You cannot run effective plays without the play even being run & being forced to move back 5 yards. With a shaky line I can understand some of the procedure calls but NOT when its done by a RB or WR. The one penalty that I completely understood was when Titus Howard popped a RB after the whistle. Even I thought that was a backyards pass and should’ve been ruled a fumble. The holding calls by the shaky & inexperienced offensive line is to be expected.
For the most part the defense looked good, but there where instances where it looked shaky with missed tackles.
Thing is, Clairton must find some form of unpredictability on offense or the team may not win at Heinz or even make it there.
With everything said, we’re dealing with kids riding a 48 game winning streak. They’re bound to have an bad game. Even though they(Bears) played their worst game in 4 years, they still won.
But hey, we also must give Chartiers Houston some credit here. They came to play and made some plays when they needed to. They certainly looked like a team that will surprise some teams along the way and possibly make the playoffs in a very strong conference that features, Clairton, Brentwood, Canevin, and Monessen. 7 teams made the playoffs last year so a very good team will get left out. The Bucs have some very good players in RB Javon Hairston, RB David Kinclaid, WR Conner Craig, WR Miles Williamson, and CB Grant Foster.
Clairton will be fine, it was just one game. But they do have to fix some things particularly in the passing game. And I think they will.