Gruden puts blame on Bears' OL for Suh hit
October, 24, 2012
By Staff | ESPNChicago.com
Jerry Lai/US PresswireInstead of blaming Ndamukong Suh, Jon Gruden pointed a finger of blame elsewhere.From the perspective of a former offensive coach, Jon Gruden had less of a problem with Ndamukong Suh's hit on Jay Cutler on Monday night than he had with what led to the vicious sack.
"As an offensive coach, I had a real problem with the protection," Gruden said Wednesday on "Mike & Mike In The Morning" on ESPN Radio. "The guy came through there clean.
"But it was a vicious hit, I didn't think it was a fine-able hit in my opinion. When a defensive player is unblocked and he has a chance to hit your quarterback, usually they hit you hard. That's been a common trend throughout the years from the films I watched."
The NFL will not fine Suh for the hit, which knocked Cutler out for one play and then sent him to get evaluated before halftime.
But even with Cutler on the field and healthy, the Bears' offense has been inconsistent. The team's 5-1 record has largely been the result of a dominant defense.
"We've seen the best teams from a record standpoint ... they're a work in progress on offense," Gruden said. "They have a new offensive coordinator (in Mike Tice) and some new concepts they're trying to put in. The offensive line to me is still the big question mark. I did see J'Marcus Webb play better at left tackle. I think (Gabe) Carimi, who missed most of last season with an injury, is coming around at right tackle. They still have some things to prove on the offensive line.
"But they have a great receiver (in Brandon Marshall) that they never had in Chicago, and he changes the game. Because you can't gang up on Matt Forte, you just can't do it or Cutler will audible and throw the ball up to that big guy. That's what makes the Bears different, the threat they have outside with Marshall and they have two very good running backs (including Michael Bush), and they haven't had two in the past like they do now. But I do think they can be balanced on offense. I like the fact they're not turning the football over. I think they're going to continue to improve."