When Kyle Long took the field for his first ever start at Soldier Field on Thursday, Chicago Bears fans across the world were keeping a close eye on No. 75. Well, those same fans were happy to see the 2013 first-round pick throw a few San Diego Chargers‘ defenders into next week. In fact, Long made plenty of headlines for a four-yard shove that the behemoth right guard threw in the first quarter.
Anyway, the Bears made news with Long way before the second preseason game. Many called the draft pick a “reach” when Chicago general manager Phil Emery decided to select the inexperienced Long at pick No. 20 overall in April. Now, considering the awful nature of Bears’ previous offensive line, the move was not immediately bashed.
However, when looking at the past Super Bowl Champions, you start to question Emery on selecting a right guard so high in the draft.
Since the Pittsburgh Steelers won XLIII there has not been a single right guard taken in the first round of any draft to start and win the Super Bowl. However, the Indianapolis Colts defeated the Bears in Super XLI with Darnell Stapleton, who went undrafted way back in 2007. Therefore, it doesn’t look like the winning formula in the NFL requires a first-round pick at the right guard position.
For instance, the last two Super Bowl winners have hoisted the Lombardi Trophy with a third round and second round pick at right guard, respectively. While this doesn’t take anything away from Long’s impressive home debut, it makes you look at Emery with some confusion.