(CBS) Down by four points with 8:32 to play, the Bears made arguably their most aggressive call of the day.
Facing a fourth-and-1 on the Bengals’ 27-yard line, the Bears decided to run to the right – behind rookies Kyle Long and Jordan Mills.
Long and Mills, the first pair of rookie offensive linemen to start a Bears opener in 30 years, worked together to seal off the edge, getting the first down to set up Jay Cutler’s touchdown pass to Brandon Marshall.
Long joined WXRT’s Lin Brehmer on Monday morning to discuss what was going through his mind after the play was called.
“I looked at Jordan and kind of gave him the head nod (saying) ‘You got it?’ And he looked at me and said, ‘Yep.’ The play happened and Matt did a great job getting around to the right side,” Long said. “They had some guys walked up in a blitz. Matt did a great job of reading it and we got the sticks moved.”
The Bears’ first-round draft pick also explained what he was thinking about as he approached the line for his first NFL snap.
“Similar to what golfers think about, they find one thing in their swing: keep your arms straight, whatever it may be,” Long said. “The thing I think about is taking small, heavy steps. I just think about keeping my feet in the ground. You can’t get thrown on your back if your feet are still in the ground.
“It’s a lot harder than it looks. We do a great job of preparing. I had trouble sleeping the night before the game, being my first NFL game going against that front seven. At the same time, you just rely on your preparation.