Hub Arkush at the Chicago Sun-Times reads my mind when it comes to the rookies on the right side of the offensive line:
The offensive line is being celebrated almost universally around Chicago for its four new starters, including the two rookies — Kyle Long and Jordan Mills — on the right side. If the line can make a leap from one of the worst units in the league over the last three seasons to just average, 2013 can be a ton of fun.
If it can’t, none of what [head coach Marc] Trestman will try to do will work.
Newer is not always better. Clearly, this group is more talented than it has been in years with the additions of Jermon Bushrod and Long. But sometimes talent isn’t enough, and what we’ve actually seen is snippets of these guys against the Chargers and Raiders, who have two of the worst defensive lines in the league.
Take a pill, everybody. There is good cause to hope for the best, but the jury is still way out on this one. This is not only a huge key to this season, but to the future under Trestman and general manager Phil Emery.
What we’ve seen of Long and Mills is highly unlikely to be what we see during the season, at least at the beginning. The same goes with the other rookies. Quotes I’ve frequently read from the rookies on the Bears say that the games have slowed down for them because the practice so fast. All indications from previous years are that’s about to change. Neither preseason games nor practice are anything like the speed they are about to experience on Sunday.
My strong suggestion would be that everyone lower their expectations and get ready for some of the growing pains that are almost certainly on the way.