Chicago Bears: Khaseem Greene, Not Blake Costanzo, Should Start in Week 9
The Chicago Bears are in a tough spot, defensively, as they have lost starting linebacker Lance Briggs for about 4-6 weeks due to a shoulder injury. On a defense that wasn’t playing well to begin with, a loss of Briggs could spell trouble for Chicago.
During a bye week, though, the Bears have plenty of time to prepare for life without not only Briggs, but of course Jay Cutler. Defensively, Jon Bostic will be playing the starting middle linebacker spot for the rest of the year after D.J. Williams went out for the season.
In place of Briggs, the Bears can choose to start either veteran Blake Costanzo, a special teams standout, or rookie Khaseem Greene out of Rutgers.
In college, Greene was a turnover machine. He holds the record for career forced fumbles with 15 forced in his college career — something the Bears took huge notice of, knowing how they love to take away the football.
After Briggs went out in week seven, Greene stayed on the bench. Once Costanzo suffered cramps, though, he got his shot and played pretty well considering the circumstances. Greene, now having two weeks to prepare as a potential starter, should fare much better in a full game if given the chance.
Not that Costanzo isn’t a good enough player, but Greene is younger and more of a physical player in respect to wanting to take the ball away. Greene was picked to possibly be the future paired with Bostic in the middle. At this point, what a great opportunity Chicago has to start Greene aside Bostic and see how their chemistry grows throughout the next few weeks.
If I’m head coach Marc Trestman, I would give Greene the nod in week nine after having an extra week to prepare. He was drafted for a purpose, and that purpose needs to begin unfolding at this very moment. Chicago needs all the playmakers they can get on defense at this point, and Greene certainly fits the mold.