Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Braxton Jones’ Evolution Quietly Hit A New Level In Atlanta

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The Chicago Bears‘ offensive line has problems. That isn’t news at this point. Nowhere was that clearer than on the right side against the Atlanta Falcons. Right guard Michael Schofield and right tackle Riley Reiff struggled in pass protection all game long. They were the primary culprits in Justin Fields taking four sacks. When a group struggles, it’s easy to lump everybody in with the lot. In truth, Braxton Jones played arguably his best game of 2022. The 5th round pick was solid again as a run blocker and almost impenetrable in pass protection.



Jones had 11 true pass sets on the afternoon. Those are blocks where he faced a defender one-on-one. He gave up one pressure, no hits, and no sacks. He did the same thing last week against Detroit on 10 true pass sets. In the previous four instances where he had double-digit true pass sets, he gave up at least three pressures every time. Seeing him continue taking steps in the right direction is quite encouraging. Look back at the game and it’s no coincidence some of Fields’ biggest moments were helped by excellent Jones blocks.

Braxton Jones is carving himself a spot in the 2023 starting lineup.

It is remarkable how fast the rookie has come along. Literally a year ago, he was staring down FCS opponents at Southern Utah. He went from that to being the second-best blocker on this offensive line behind Teven Jenkins. Things like that aren’t supposed to happen in the NFL. If he were from Alabama or Ohio State, sure. Those guys have proven themselves against top competition. Jones played mostly guys that have no future in professional football. It doesn’t seem to have mattered. He’s playing at a higher level each time he steps on the field.

Next week will be another big challenge. The New York Jets have one of the best defensive lines in the NFL. They figure to give him 60 minutes of hard work. What nobody knows is whether Braxton Jones will be protecting Fields or Trevor Siemian. Either way, he has to have another strong performance if the Bears are going to pull off any upset. People should not overlook this development. They may have scored a long-term left tackle of the future for cheap. That could change the entire complexion of this rebuild.

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FNagy
FNagy
Nov 22, 2022 2:28 pm

@Dean TY 🙏 for not saying Orlando Brown. I totally agree with Elgton Jenkins, but not at LT. He can play LG or RT shoot he has also started at Center. Watching him stonewall EVERY Bears defender TWICE for the past 3-4 seasons has been exceptionally frustrating. Too bad they paid the big bucks to the wrong guy( David Bakhtiari is one of the most overrated players and has a literal immunity to being penalized the dude holds on EVERY play) I think some Lower body strength added to Jones will help immensely and he will continue to ascend and… Read more »

Last edited 2 months ago by FNagy
Thomas J Cameron
Thomas J Cameron
Nov 22, 2022 2:18 pm

Braxton is a keeper. Plus, don’t forget Jenkins. And, I think Borom will develop to fit somewhere. Has anyone thought of him as a Guard?

Lynn Todd
Lynn Todd
Nov 22, 2022 12:58 pm

The team will need to decide if he will be the LT or LG for next season. Very impressive season so say the least. RG seems to be taken would like to see at least two proven free agents brought in to start from day one

Derone
Derone
Nov 22, 2022 11:37 am

We’re going to draft Will Anderson Jr…🙏 I’ve been praying on it

Ralph Law
Ralph Law
Nov 22, 2022 11:16 am

So. do we need 2 or 3 offensive linemen for next season? Braxton seems like the only person on the offensive side of the ball who has worked out. Perhaps, Velus Jones starting to show his skills.

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