Frank Omiyale can play left guard and right tackle and he is expected to be a starter at one of those positions this season. Omiyale also known as “The Tank”, a reference to Old School a movie with Will Ferrell has to be pretty good in order for this style of up tempo offense to work.
Lovie Smith talked about what his plan with Omiyale would be:
“We’re going to lock Frank in at one position, whatever position that ends up being.”
“He can play the left guard position. He can play the right tackle position. I think it’s safe to say that Frank will be at one of those positions for us and play well. We’re looking at all that right now.”
GM Jerry Angelo also had some words about Omiyale and the offensive line in general:
“We’ve talked a lot about that, there’s the possibility of moving him out to tackle. The coaches are continuing to go through our team [to] evaluate all the players and see where we are with the guard position, if we’re able to do that.”
The former fifth round pick by the Atlanta Falcons, Omiyale, 27 years old, started 12 games at left guard in his first season with the Bears. Omiyale wasn’t very good at left guard and he was replaced by Josh Beekman during parts of the season. Right tackle is Omiyale’s natural position and I think he can easily beat out veteran Kevin Shaffer out for the starting gig.
Here’s my projected starting offensive line for the 2010-2011 season:
LT: #74, Chris Williams
LG: #67, Josh Beekman
C: #57, Olin Kreutz
RG: #63, Roberto Garza
RT: #68, Frank Omiyale
Bench: Kevin Shaffer (tackle), Lance Louis (tackle), James Marten (tackle), and John Asiata (guard).
If this is the Bears starting offensive line it’s not too bad because they all played together last season and Chris Williams and Frank Omiyale should be steady at the tackle spots. My two concerns are with Josh Beekman at the left guard position and the lack of depth on the roster. The draft and free agency should be where the Bears add some needed depth. Josh Beekman needs to prove himself in training camp and the preseason to earn my trust, I know he’s a good kid but I don’t know if he’s a starter in the NFL just yet.
The addition of offensive line Mike Tice is a big deal, he has a reputation for being a very good coach. When Tice was coaching the Vikings they were one of the best lines in the league and year after year a couple of the players would make the Pro Bowl.
The Bears know what must be done at the offensive line position, they saw how much they struggled last season and with Mike Martz’s new philosophies there is a very small room for error.
All quotes from chicagobears.com