I know what you're thinking.
Is this guy nuts?
The running game didn't look good versus the Packers! What is he thinking? Let me tell you what I'm thinking.
Yes, 25 carries for 55 yards is not very good.
For a first game, I'll take it. We all know what Forte is capable of. He isn't going to be putting up many more 2.2 yard per carry averages.
Last season, Forte posted three or more yards per carry in 13 out of 16 games. That is pretty good if you ask me.
Forte also had three 100 yard games last season and two multi-TD games. He'll be okay.
The offensive line in 2009 is pretty inexperienced.
They didn't do a good job on Sunday night. Don't expect to see that often as long as running-minded Lovie Smith is at the helm of the Bears.
What Needs to Happen
The offensive line needs to protect.
They didn't protect Cutler and they didn't make lanes for Forte. Forte is a very powerful, agile runner. He is going to find the lanes and explode through them.
In week two, the line has to beat the powerful D-Line of the Pittsburgh Steelers. This is a tough test for this line. I think they can do it. I think they can open up the lanes for Forte.
They need to run the ball more to the outside and to the edge.
Let Forte make a play. As long as the linemen pull their blocks to the appropriate spot, Forte will do the rest. Ron Turner has to get away from this up the middle stuff that no Bears fan likes.
We don't want a Frank Gore.
If Forte can get to the outside, he will explode. He is talented enough and fast enough to make something happen. Turner just has to call the right play and the Bears have to execute it.
In his rookie season, Forte put up pretty good numbers. He had 1,238 rushing yards and four touchdowns.
This season, I expect Forte to put up higher numbers.
I am expecting around 1,300 to 1,500 yards from Forte and hopefully in the neighborhood of four to seven touch downs. If Forte can produce numbers like those, the Bears will definitely be one of the most feared teams in the NFL.