Jmscooby offered a fair critique of Wednesday's Pressure Cooker post, suggesting I had overlooked a more obvious Chicago Bears player -- defensive tackle Tommie Harris -- in favor of defensive end Mark Anderson:
I think you have a poor pulse on the Bears to think Anderson is in the pressure cooker over Tommie. Worst case scenario, Izzy [Idonije] and [Corey] Wootton can cover LDE. Tommie was suspended by the team 1 game (and the year before), ejected early on another, and makes a heck of a lot more than MA. Who would back up Harris? [Marcus] Harrison? [Jarron] Gilbert? [Henry] Melton? What position is more of a priority in Chicago's scheme? Undertackle or LDE? Not to mention [Adewale] Ogunleye is still out there, although I don't want him. Is there a replacement on the street to replace Tommie?
All good points, jmscooby. In putting together the post, a few things came to mind. First, Harris appeared in our 2009 version of the Pressure Cooker. As we all know, he fell far short of those expectations and, in my mind, took himself off the list of potential playmakers for the 2010 season. I just think it's folly to suggest that, after mostly disappearing for two-plus years, Harris will once again become a player the Bears can count on for consistent disruption inside.
The Bears need more pass rush, whether it comes from the defensive tackle or defensive end. This offseason, the Bears bid farewell to defensive ends Alex Brown and Ogunleye. Tossing Anderson into the lineup suggests the Bears consider him an upgrade. They're counting on him in a way that I don't think anyone can reasonably be counting on Harris: To provide consistent pass rush. And I don't have any illusions that Idonije can be a full-time defensive end, or that Wootton is ready for that role.
That's where I'm coming from, at least. Often I'll respond to individual comments in the comment section, but I thought this one deserved a broader discussion.