Marc Trestman, Chicago Bears show read-option signs


Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy told NFL Network on Wednesday morning that stopping the read option is a priority in 2013.

With games against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 1 and the Washington Redskins in Week 2, the Packers will be tested early on that front. The same might be true in Week 9, when Marc Trestman's Chicago Bears roll into Lambeau Field.

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Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune reported Tuesday that the "building blocks for the read-option are right out in the open for everyone to see" at Bears camp. Biggs has seen Jay Cutler take snaps out of a shotgun formation decorated with an offset back, along with plenty of "mesh-point action," a fundamental aspect of the attack.

It's no secret: Trestman has talked about using the read option before. Asked if the Bears will do so in September, backup quarterback Josh McCown said: "I don't know. We'll see what happens with it. Obviously, it's prevalent in our league right now so there are merits to practicing it if anything just to give your defense a look."

That was the case in Arizona, where buzz over super-slow Carson Palmer running the option quieted when Cardinals coach Bruce Arians acknowledged "it was more for the defense."

Still,'s Bucky Brooks argues that today's Bears have the tools to run the scheme, citing both Cutler's athleticism and the inherent benefits of Matt Forte and Michael Bush operating out of a zone-based blocking scheme against an apprehensive defense. Brooks also believes teams putting eight defenders in the box with a single high safety against the option would trigger Brandon Marshall for a monster campaign.

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Cutler won't be mistaken for Colin Kaepernick on the ground, but Trestman believes his strong-armed quarterback has the "skill set to do just about everything, anything."

Said Trestman: "We are trying to give him the things he has had the most success with first. Whether we'll (run the option), I don't know. We've studied it."

Option or not, the Bears should be something to see in 2013.

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