Chicago Bears: 5 Young Players Who Need to Take the Next Step

Bryan DietzlerSenior Analyst INovember 29, 2011

Chicago Bears: 5 Young Players Who Need to Take the Next Step

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    The Bears have a few younger players they have inserted into the lineup this year who are starting to perform well, but still need to take that next step in order to become effective and make the team better. Some of the names we might think of right away include Chris Conte, J’Marcus Webb and Stephen Paea. There are others who need to step up and play well and we will take a look at them here.

    Here are five young Bears players who need to step it up to help this team have success the rest of the season.

Chris Conte

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    Conte is getting some work back in the backfield at the safety position, and as a result the Bears are putting a lot of pressure on him to perform.  In his limited action he has done well and has even made a few nice plays.  When he’s in there, Conte is going to have to continue to step up and play well at the safety position.  If he can do that, the Bears defense will be that much better.

J’Marcus Webb

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    This second-year player has started to hold his own at the left tackle position, but he still suffers from something that has hurt the team often—false starts.  We see him do this every now and then, sometimes in critical situations, and he needs to step up and stop these penalties.  If he can get over that, then the Bears will have better performances on the offensive line and from Webb. 

Stephen Paea

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    Whenever Paea gets in the lineup, he needs to play like a man on fire.  The Bears drafted him in the second round for a reason, and that reason was to help them beef up their defensive line and provide themselves some options.  But we just haven’t seen a lot of him.  Perhaps he still hasn’t gotten over the injury that he suffered prior to the draft?  Either way, the Bears need to use him more, and when he’s out there, Paea needs to step it up.

Henry Melton

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    Melton can still be considered a younger player, and after a brilliant first game of the season, Melton has since fallen off a bit and has become somewhat invisible.  He did play a little better after head coach Lovie Smith called him out publicly for his play, but he’s been hot and cold leaving some to wonder if he’s actually the right player to play the position.  He has to step up not only to help himself, but his team as well. (Incidentally, he did have a nice game against the Raiders this Sunday.)

Major Wright

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    The Bears have two young safeties who need to step up and play, and Major Wright is the other one of the two who needs to increase his production and play well.  Wright has been doing a good job at the position, especially during the last few weeks as he has managed to come up with some nice interceptions and has made some plays.  However, in order for the Bears to have success, he needs to continue playing well and continue making plays.