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Week 15: Bears at Lions Game Preview

| December 14th, 2017

Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears. And yes, they may have fooled me last week. Again.


Poem

once more unto the breach, dear friends, he wrote

and so i do commit myself to battle

many know not to trust these capricious lads

many, like i, are merely cattle

so unto the breach i go, once more

believing, yes always believing

and surely you know, come saturday night

i shall, once again, be grieving


Five Thoughts on The Actual Game

  • Don’t look now but Jordan Howard is only 73 yards behind Le’Veon Bell in the race for the NFL rushing title. In their first meeting this season, Howard put 125 yards on the board and the Lions defense has actually gotten worse at stopping the run since. Just last week they allowed the Bucs, one of the league’s worst running teams, to average nearly 5 yards a carry. Could be a big Saturday afternoon for the unheralded Bears superstar.

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Across The Middle: Pace Was Sunday’s Big Winner

| December 13th, 2017

No Bear had a better day Sunday than General Manager Ryan Pace.

His quarterback was in control throughout the game. His tight end made big catches. His running backs did whatever the hell they wanted because the offensive line he built paved the way.  His offense dominated and he’s going to be able to use that tape to sell the future to fans and his next head coach.

I have ruled out guys like Jim Harbaugh and Josh McDaniels for the Bears job simply because they’re going to want to be able to pick the players. The last two years the hottest coaches all got personnel say. That’s a trend that isn’t going to end and would generally make the Bears job less attractive. Pace, however, just might have shown the world that he knows what he’s doing and it might be enough for the premier coaches to trust him.

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Now, Do It Again.

| December 12th, 2017

The Bears looked like a professional football team Sunday. Well-coached. Brilliantly quarterbacked. Dynamic. Passionate. Tough. Young! From the second Mitch Trubisky was drafted with the second overall pick, 2017 became about building optimism for 2018. That’s life with a rookie quarterback, especially when there are first and second-year players littered across the roster. For the first time this season the future looked beyond bright for this organization. It looked downright special. Because of the quarterback. Because of the kids.

Now they need to do it again.

Detroit is still playing for something. A lot of things, actually. They’re home. They are only a game out of the playoffs. They have a head coach they love, currently resting his tuchus on one of the league’s warmest seats. They need this game. And believe me, they’re going to play like it.

Historically, at least in the history of John Fox’s tenure in Chicago, Saturday afternoon in Detroit is where the Bears would lay an egg. As soon as the slightest bit of optimism creeps into the minds of fans and onto the pages of the daily newspapers, Fox’s Bears no-show. There are a lot of damning statistics when it comes to this head coach but none more damning than his 0-7 record when favored. That means every time Vegas has expected the Fox Bears to perform, they have failed to do so. Every. Time. That’s hard to do.

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Three Thoughts on the Bears Beating the Hell Out of the Bengals

| December 11th, 2017

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

(1) I simply didn’t see it coming. I pride myself on having a good feel as to how the Bears will play on a week-to-week basis and I thought the stage was set Sunday for an overwhelming Bengals victory. Instead the Bears, with a lame duck coach, undermanned offense and injury-plagued defense, delivered their best performance of the season. They were simply great in all three phases and that is a credit to John Fox.


(2) Trubisky. Cohen. Howard. Shaheen. Whitehair. Jackson. If you want to know why Ryan Pace isn’t going to be fired, watch the tape of this game. The GM is building a young nucleus through the draft; something the Bears have not done in nearly twenty years. This job will be the best open gig in the NFL come January.


(3) Mitch Trubisky’s last two games. 37-47 (79% completed), 373 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INTs and quarterback rating around 115.

Okay, so I’m not going to overreact to these two games. I didn’t overreact to some of his struggles so I’m not going to overreact to his terrific play the last two weeks. But the thing that should excite Bears fans is the number of players on this roster who are quick to tell media, immediately post-game, how great a leader Trubisky is. Folks, that’s not normal. Rookies don’t command huddles very often. Rookies don’t impress veterans with their attitude and composure very often. This kid has all the intangibles of a great quarterback.

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222 Comments

Data Responds: Bears at Bengals

| December 10th, 2017

Is this real life?

The Bears dominated on both sides of the ball, scored 30 points for the first time in over two years, and generally rolled over the dormant Cincinnati Bengals.

I know Cincinnati is bad and banged up, but so are the Bears, and this was a lot of fun. More importantly, this as led largely by young players for the Bears, which bodes well for the future. Let’s take a look at what happened.

Offense

  • The Bears came out and threw it on their first 2 plays! The first resulted in an awful Jordan Howard drop (drink), while the second was a beautiful play action rollout to Josh Bellamy for a 1st down. This unsurprisingly caught the Bengals’ defense off guard, and they backed off the defense into standard 7 man boxes instead of loading 8-9 up. As a result, the Bears ran it the next two plays for about 40 yards and a touchdown. That marked the first time this season that the offense scored a touchdown on their first possession of the game.
  • Before I get too down on Howard, how about giving it up for a great game from Chicago’s stud running back? He had his 12th 100 yard rushing game in 26 career starts and passed the 1,000 yard mark for the 2nd year in a row, making him the first running back in Chicago history to start his career that way. That’s pretty remarkable when you think of the great running backs who have played in Chicago.

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Week 14: Bears at Bengals Game Preview

| December 7th, 2017

We have received hundreds of dollars in donations for the holiday drive above. Hopefully that will continue. $2 buys a composition book and with AREENA matching, it actually buys two. You can donate HERE.


Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears. And with the USMNT out of the World Cup, I don’t have another team to root for. But hey, Tiger Woods may be back.


Poem

i hear the fox whisper, whisper to me

i hear the fox whisper, behind the oak tree

come help me he says, with anxious dismay

i’ve lost, oh i’ve lost, oh i’ve lost my damn way

—–

once i could run

now i can not

once i defended

myself from this lot

once all my plans and ideas seemed to work

now here i stand, an omnivorous jerk

—–

his whispers receded, he wandered away

where he was headed, no one could say

i’ll always remember, this time with the fox

but now there may be less than eight in the box


Five Thoughts on Bears / Bengals

  • Andy Dalton isn’t a great quarterback (by any means) but it won’t take great quarterbacking to beat this current crop of Bears defenders. Their best pass rusher is an overworked defensive tackle and the Bengals will stick two offensive linemen on Hicks and give Dalton all day to throw. How much time do you think A.J. Green needs to find holes in this secondary? Answer: Not as much as he’ll have Sunday. Green’s line: 11 catches, 165 yards, 2 TDs.

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Across The Middle: 2018 Chicago Bears Coach Power Rankings

| December 6th, 2017

Trust is going to be the most important factor in where the Bears go from here.

Ryan Pace is in his third year as GM for a franchise that has won 12 games since he took over. That’s 11 fewer than the guy he replaced and he only got three years to do the job. George McCaskey may still have faith in Pace but he’s admittedly not a patient person. Whoever the next coach of the Bears is, they must trust that Pace picked the right quarterback and knows how to build the rest of the roster.

On Pace’s part, he has to trust the person he hires to create a successful environment around the franchise quarterback, while not losing sight of what else is going on around him. For those reasons, I believe the next coach of the Bears is likely going to be somebody Pace knows and already trusts. We’ve seen these kinds of relationships come together recently in Jacksonville, Buffalo, San Francisco and Philadelphia. Pace not only needs somebody he trusts, he needs a quick turnaround and three of the four aforementioned teams are enjoying the most success they’ve had in a number of years.

Here is my guess on which current pro coaches have the best odds of being the Bears coach next season:

1. Dennis Allen, DC, New Orleans Saints

Everyone wants an offensive guy, I get it. But Allen has connections to John DeFilippo, Mike McCoy, Al Saunders and Bill Lazor. It’s also possible he can lure another veteran coordinator — Norv Turner, Gary Kubiak or Dirk Koetter — to run his offense with a young stud quarterback. This goes back to the trust factor because Pace worked with Allen for five years in New Orleans. Allen is said to be uniquely organized and detailed — the opposite of the Bears current coach. He failed in Oakland but he had just one year as a coordinator at that point and didn’t have any talent. Since he took over for Rob Ryan late in the 2015 season, the Saints have had a drastic improvement defensively.

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The Bears Stink. Support a Good Cause.

| December 4th, 2017


In last week’s game preview I gave some space to the charitable efforts of Cook County Commissioner – and friend of DBB -Bridget Gainer. The image is above.

Since this is a blog, and since writing is a central component, I’ve decided to focus our attention on the composition notebooks. Incarceration ain’t easy. And while providing shampoo and conditioner would be nice, providing these women with an outlet to express themselves would be far more impacting. 

And our sponsor, AREENA, has decided to match the total donations of our readers. We’ll then take the money and get hundreds of composition notebooks to Gainer’s people the week of December 18th.

So donate! $2 buys a notebook. $5 buys three notebooks. Give what you can. The Bears stink. So let’s try and make a difference. The button to donate is directly below.




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