LAKE FOREST – Bears offensive coordinator Luke Getsy said he doesn’t look at a game plan as conservative or aggressive. That’s not how the 39-year-old coach frames it in his mind.
“I don’t look at it as that way,” Getsy said. “I don’t think I ever have. We look for advantageous looks.”
He later added, “Now, we have to do better. We have to coach it better. We have to make sure that guys execute it better. That’s where we have to get better at it, for sure.”
Getsy noted he has heard the criticism that Sunday’s passing attack against Green Bay featured too many horizontal passes. He doesn’t see a problem with the offensive game plan as it was called Sunday. In Getsy’s mind, the issue was the execution.
“If you watch the film, we have everybody accounted for, and there’s nobody else out there [to block],” Getsy said. “If we can just capture that edge, those are 15-, 25-yard gains and you guys are patting me on my back. And I get it. That’s part of [the job].”
Part of the problem was poor blocking on the perimeter. Receiver Chase Claypool, in particular, really struggled to block defenders and, at times, seemed disinterested. It was bad enough that head coach Matt Eberflus had to schedule a sit-down meeting with Claypool to discuss his efforts as a blocker.
Although Eberflus said earlier this week that blocking is all about technique and effort, Getsy said Thursday that he didn’t believe Claypool was uninterested in blocking.
“He had a couple of plays where he didn’t execute it, and that hurt us,” Getsy said. “He knows that, but Chase wants to do it. I don’t think it’s a matter of him wanting.”
[Chase Claypool] had a couple of plays where he didn’t execute it and that hurt us. He knows that, but Chase wants to do it. I don’t think it’s a matter of him wanting.”— Luke Getsy, Bears offensive coordinator
The Bears elected to have Claypool – who is a big frame at 6-foot-4, 238 pounds – as a blocking wide receiver, leaving veteran Equanimeous St. Brown inactive for Week 1. Since St. Brown arrived in March 2022 as a free agent, the Bears have done nothing but rave about St. Brown’s blocking abilities on the perimeter.
Getsy said the decision to make a player inactive on game day comes down to Eberflus and general manager Ryan Poles. NFL teams can have up to 53 players, but only 46 can dress on game days, so numerous players will be inactive every Sunday.
But as far as the execution goes, Getsy said he saw some Week 1 rust.
“We’re coaching every single person to the best of our abilities and getting the details right,” Getsy said. “Our details were not good enough, and that is kind of the underlying fact that showed up.”
The offensive line was part of the problem. Getsy said the offensive line can do better with some of its one-on-one matchups. Right guard Nate Davis, who missed much of training camp, appeared rusty. Second-year left tackle Braxton Jones had some issues with penalties.
Overall, the cohesion from the five players on the offensive line was lacking for stretches of the game.
“It comes with experience and playing with each other as much as we can with the time we have early in the weeks,” Jones said.
Jones said it’s going to take linemen putting in some extra work, watching some extra film outside of the practice facility, for the Bears to clean things up on the line.
“It just takes a different level of focus,” he said.
Quarterback Justin Fields faced pressure on 18.8% of passing dropbacks, according to Pro Football Reference, which was actually in the top half of the league in Week 1. But when the offensive line made mistakes, it generally led to Fields scrambling for his life.
Asked specifically about Davis, who the Bears signed to a three-year, $30 million contract in March, Getsy defended the veteran right guard.
“For Nate to not have as much practice experience as the other guys and for him to hang in there the whole game, I was really happy that he was able to do that,” Getsy said.