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Chalk Talk


Chalk Talk: Will Bears offense be rusty?

Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of questions from fans on

With the Bears not playing their starters in the preseason, how much are they concerned about their offense being rusty Thursday night against the Packers?
Phil G.
Winnetka, Illinois

Bears coach Matt Nagy isn't worried about that at all. Of course, he doesn't expect perfect execution from the offense Thursday night against the Packers, but it won't be because the starters didn't play a few series in the preseason. Here's what Nagy had to say about that this week: "I don't expect an ounce of rust, I really don't. Does that mean that we're not going to struggle at times? I don't know. It's not because they didn't play 50 snaps in the preseason. We got more reps this preseason in practice than probably any team I've ever been around. We got a lot of reps in practice."

Will defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano continue to coach from the sideline or will he be up in the booth like his predecessor, Vic Fangio, was?
Darren B.
Inverness, Illinois

Chuck Pagano prefers to be on the sideline with his players and will remain there for regular-season games. He said he was always on the sideline during his stint as Ravens defensive backs coach and later defensive coordinator from 2008-11. Here's how Pagano explained it: "You're in the fire. Hands on. I've always been on the field. I think maybe one year when I was at the University of Miami and Greg Schiano was our defensive coordinator, former Bear [coach] himself, I think I was in the box when he was calling the defenses down there. Other than that, I have always been down on the field."

By all accounts I've read, Eddy Pineiro has shown great improvement since he first joined the Bears and kicked in OTAs. What has accounted for that?
Oliver D.

Eddy Pineiro has always had a very strong leg. What the Bears have worked on since OTAs is simplifying his technique as he approaches the ball. Here's how special-teams coordinator Chris Tabor explained it this week: "Walking back, stepping off, the 90-degree angle, finding my line and playing that, we just really had to hone that stuff in take away some of the unnecessary movements after he got lined up so that he can stay at a proper distance from the football. You might be talking about just inches … I mean it's a golf swing, so-to-speak, with your feet."

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