182 Comments

Across The Middle With Andrew Dannehy

| December 16th, 2015

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  • Once again, I’m not upset with the fact that the Bears lost, but how they lost. The Redskins have talent, probably as much or more than the Bears, but they were coming off of a short week and they can’t win on the road. Meanwhile, the Bears were coming off a disappointing loss and questions about why they can’t win at home. You’d think the Bears would be motivated, right? Nope. They came out flat again. Six flat quarters against the 49ers and Redskins very well could’ve cost them a spot in the playoffs. That isn’t acceptable. They looked like a Trestman-coached team for six straight quarters before turning it around in the second half.
  • In defense of the coaching staff, I don’t think they’re particularly worried about wins and losses right now. They’ve been coaching for the future for about 10 weeks.
  • My guess on the Kevin White situation: The Bears players and coaches fully expected him to be available, but Ryan Pace made the call.

  • I’ll get more into it later, but expecting Gould to make that kick isn’t any more unreasonable than expecting Alshon Jeffery to make the catch on the second down play. If Gould had made that kick, it would’ve been a great play. The same is true with Jeffery’s possible catch.
  • Before we say the Bears need to cut Gould, look at the options. Even in a down year, he’s been better than most of the kickers in the league have been in their careers. The Packers, Vikings and Lions wouldn’t have been confident in their kickers making the same kick that Gould missed and all three of their kickers are considered good. The argument that Gould has to make that kick because “it’s his job” shows how spoiled Bears fans have been by him. The Bears need to bring in competition, but they can’t just cut him and risk going years with the likes of Chris Boniol and Paul Edinger again.
  • Love Zach Miller. Who doesn’t? In every broadcast you hear the announcer talk about how much Cutler and the coaches love him. Even ESPN’s fantasy guru Matthew Berry says it. The Bears are spreading the word as far as possible because they’re going to cut Martellus Bennett or give him away. But they can’t go into next season with Miller as the unquestioned top tight end. How can you count on him to stay healthy?
  • I really like the idea of having Forte and Langford splitting carries all of next year. I don’t trust Langford enough to think he can handle 100 percent of the load and I think Ka’Deem Carey is strictly a situational player. Forte is still the best back on the team and with Langford breathing down his neck, he doesn’t have a choice but to run hard. It’s bringing out the best in both players.
  • Going forward, I have a lot more confidence in Kyle Long at guard than I do at tackle. He might one day become a really good tackle, but he’s got a long way to go and he’s already a great guard.
  • Lamarr Houston and Willie Young have combined for 11.5 sacks. Teams should always look to add pass rush, but the emergence of those two means the Bears won’t have to spend a lot of money or invest a high draft pick to find a player opposite Pernell McPhee.

This Still Doesn’t Make Sense

If Gould is really as bad as my Twitter timeline suggests, then shouldn’t the coaching staff be getting a lot of heat for how they managed the end of the game?

50-yard kicks are difficult. Game-winning kicks are difficult. Kicking in the rain and wind is difficult. Add all of those factors with a  kicker whose confidence is already shaken and, well, you get what you ask for. I didn’t think for one second that Gould was going to make that kick and I’m on the island of people who still think he’s good.

They had to attempt the kick at that point, but the second and third down plays were horrendous. They didn’t need deep shots, but that’s what they took with only one receiver running a route under 20 yards on both plays. They should have tried to pick up a couple more first downs then taken a shot with as little time remaining as possible. If they had to kick it, make it as easy as possible and make sure the Redskins wouldn’t have had enough time to down and win the game after that. Even if Gould had made the kick, I don’t think the Bears would’ve won because the Redskins had plenty of time to get back down in field goal range.

The end of the game was almost as mismanaged as the end of the first half, when they let 40 seconds wind down despite having all three timeouts. Luckily, Cutler made a couple of great plays to save them before halftime. They were relying on players making great plays again at the end of the game and it didn’t work because they don’t have enough great players to rely on that time after time.

Player of the Week

Cutler was the only player who played well for all four quarters. Hell, he might have been the only player who was just not terrible for all four quarters. While Adam Gase is getting a lot of credit for the work he’s supposedly done, the Bears best plays are still the plays in which Cutler moves around and makes something happen down the field.

Goat of the Week

The middle of the Bears defense remains a major issue. Jordan Reed has had three games in his entire career in which he has finished with 120 or more yards, two have come against the Bears.

It wasn’t just McClellin or Jones or Anderson or Amos, it was all of them. It wasn’t even just Reed who tore them up. It didn’t matter, they all stunk. I still consider Amos a part of the Bears core going forward, but he has hit the rookie wall. I think McClellin will be back next year but I don’t see the point in playing Jones anymore.

Bold Prediction for Week 15

Bears win on a 37-yard field goal by Gould in overtime.

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  • Big Mike

    First. On accident. Go Bears. The most important thing about this week, is pride.

    • MB30SD

      ….there is no try

      • Scharfinator

        DO OR DO NOT

    • Most important thing about this week is jumping a team or two in the draft while breaking AP and Bridgewater

  • Big Mike

    While Long has had a full season at Tackle, real development at a new position comes in the offseason. He also has the advantage of a full season of film on himself, to build is training on. When he’s been beat on pass blocking, he’s gotten his head out in front of ass and had a foot stuck in the ground. I think if you look at his results, he’s given up fewer sacks/hits/hurries on turf.

    • I had this debate with Andrew on Twitter on Sunday.

      IMO Long was terrible at OT the first 2-3 weeks, which is not surprising given he was thrown out there with no prep week 1 (huge mistake, should have been OT from April on).

      But he settled in after that and has mostly been ok, with some up and some down. He held his own against Khalil Mack, erased Justin Houston, and dominated Julius Peppers the 2nd time around. This past Sunday was his first truly bad game in a couple months.

      His work at RT this year reminds me of his rookie year at RG. Saw flashes, but it was inconsistent. Then in his 2nd year he came out and kicked ass. I expect the same next year. He has the athleticism to succeed out there and the attitude to want to be great, it’s just a matter of time.

      • Big Mike

        Yep. Also… how many of those good games were on turf?

        • well, IMO at OAK, at KC, and at GB were his best 3 games. All road games, dunno about turf.

          • Big Mike

            all three are grass. Bermuda grass for the OAK/KC Kentucky blue grass for the packers ( I looked it up). Bears use the same stuff as the Packers. So no correlation there

          • BillW

            I don’t think the Bears use the same stuff as GB. I remember reading a while ago they have some type of blend with a small amount of fake stuff in it. Don’t have time to look that up, but their field holds up much better than Soldier Field.

          • Big Mike

            Bill you’re right. They use Kentucky blue grass with a synthetic material.
            From wikipedia
            “Desso GrassMaster is a sports playing field surface composed of natural grass combined with artificial fibres.The artificial grass fibres are injected 20 centimetres (7.9 in) deep, and cover about 3% of the surface. While the grass is growing, the roots intertwine with the artificial fibres. The designers claim this anchors the field to create a solid, even structure with good drainage and
            ‘playing comfort’.

            Reinforced natural grass or hybrid grass is used for
            stadium pitches and training pitches, used for association football,
            rugby, American football and baseball. Reinforced natural grass can also
            be used for events and concerts. The artificial turf injection shortens
            the recovery time for the grass.

          • Bender McLugh

            that’s badass

          • Big Mike

            And we don’t do that why?

          • BillW

            “Reinforced natural grass can alsobe used for events and concerts. The artificial turf injection shortens
            the recovery time for the grass.”

            Sounds like a no-brainer. The Park District always says it’s the Bears call.

          • Bender McLugh

            Right?

          • BillW

            They were home for Oakland.

          • right you are. Brain fart.

      • TBC

        His worst game (before this one) was against Detroit week 6.

        • based on what? PFF grades (because I basically ignore those)?
          He gave up 3 sacks in the first 3 weeks of the season and then didn’t give up another until this past week. He got abused by Peppers in week 1, which was probably his worst game of the year in my book.

          • And didn’t he have a cast early on? We all know a certain amount of holding occurs w every olinemen, esp on the edge

          • TBC

            Based on his penalties and himself tweeting that he sucked.

          • he’s tweeted the same thing multiple times this year.

            Don’t get me wrong: he was bad against DET, but IMO his first 3 games and last week were all worse.

          • BillW

            He’s a real team leader and always starts and ends with himself when it comes to criticism. Quite the contrast to a certain QB from up north I’d say.

      • Irish Sweetness

        And Mack had 5 sacks of Nobweiler, remember. We know what Pep is like.

    • BearDown100393

      Kyle Long appeared playing hurt on Sunday. That was my impression. No, I have nothing factual to substantiate this claim.

    • Irish Sweetness

      Yeah, I’m thinking he can’t be that slow. I imagine Tayo out at RT would struggle perhaps with those speed-rushers, so if Kyle learns how to do that they’ll likely keep him there.

  • BillW

    As Andrew points out – and many have already said – the play calling after they got the last first down was clueless. OK – maybe on 2nd down you take a shot. But you have to prioritize getting another first – especially with so much time left.

    Because it’s a rebuilding year we are kind of giving Fox and company a pass on game management. But objectively it’s been pretty bad. Not “kicking on 2nd down” bad, but that’s damning with very faint praise.

    And also to Andrew’s point – it’s no longer a question if Gase is making Cutler look good or vice versa. To me the question is – is Gase actually good?

    • willbest

      If Gase isn’t good, why does Cutler look better than every year except 2011?

      • Coaches have multiple roles. For now, I’ll categorize into 2 groups, though there’s probably more than this.

        1) Communicating with players and preparing them to play well. This is mostly non-game day stuff.
        2) In-game playcalling.

        IMO Gase has been FANTASTIC with Cutler at #1 and pretty mediocre at #2. All year long they’ve consistently been in bad 3rd down situations, and it’s taken fantastic play by Cutler to consistently convert those 3rd and longs (90/181 3rd down plays this year have been with 7+ yards to go. That’s 50%).

        So credit Gase for communicating well with Cutler, especially in the build-up to the season, and getting him to make better decisions (both in moving around the pocket and not chucking it up into traffic as much).

        • Scharfinator

          This is well put, JWood. It really sums up how I feel about Gase.

          It also makes sense he would be weak with in game play calling, since he had Manning doing it for him for, what, 3 years?

          • Irish Sweetness

            Question: why do we look better as a team when we need to score at the end of a game?

            Is it Cutty calling his own plays? Is it the fact that it’s fast-paced pass plays? Or that we’re just passing? 42 runs against SF. A game we lost.

          • Scharfinator

            I dunno, we should probably also ask why Gase is so horribly conservative when trying to burn the clock.

        • Big Mike

          Run, Run, Pass doesn’t cut it. Especially when it is the same delayed handoff every time. I really don’t like when Cutler peyton’s around for 15 seconds and runs off tackle.

          • Huge Bear’s Penis

            run, run, pass might cut it, IF we did not have so many penalties. I know we are middle of the pack when it comes to number of penalties for the team, but we have way too many offensive penalties. so far we are 2nd in Holding penalties with 22 and in the top 1/3 for false start penalties with 17. these penalties need to be addressed, we are a team that needs to be a ball control Offense to protect the Defense, which makes the offensive penalties even more detrimental.

        • Anonymous

          Yeah, but your last phrase in your last paragraph is arguably the single most important development on the Bears’ O this year. And attributing it to Gase says almost all you need to know about the guy.

          The reclamation project doesn’t quite rise to Gruden/Gannon but it is near the same area code.

          • I agree Gase has been hugely important this year. And there’s no guarantee Cutler will continue his newfound approach if Gase leaves.

            Of course, there’s also the possibility more of that non-gameday stuff is attributable to the QB coach, Dowell Logains, and they could replace Gase with a better play caller while maintaining the positive Cutler developments by keeping him should Gase leave for elsewhere.

            Or that a new OC (likely with strong Fox ties) would be able to continue the non-gameday benefits and improve the playcalling. Fox has a history of quality coordinators, something Cutler never had before this year.

            Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to run Gase out of town. But I don’t think the sky is falling if he leaves for a HC gig.

          • Anonymous

            Agreed. And valid point about Logains.

          • CanadaBear

            Any chance Logains gets the OC job if Gase leaves?

          • Irish Sweetness

            Plus there’s execution. Hard to make a play look good if the blocking/execution is shit. Can’t put it all on Gase, I suppose. We’re probably better with Montgomery and Long at RG though. A little time is all.

    • Sactowns#1

      How in the WORLD did he not throw a single challenge flag in that game?!

      • BillW

        Not sure where he would have. The “bobble” catch by Washington was shown three times on the huge video board. I’m in the north end zone and can see that one crystal clear (man, technology has come a LONG way.) Anyway, everyone around me said there wouldn’t be enough to reverse the call.

        I don’t recall any other times I thought he shoudl challenge (except the ping-pong catch where he laid the ball down. They never showed the Washington recovery and we all thought he was called down by contact.)

        • Sactowns#1

          The catch for a 1st where the players 2nd foot went out. The spot of the ball for a 1st down in the 1st half. Plenty of opportunities there. But lets all play it safe.

      • Irish Sweetness

        Akin to Ronda Rousey not throwing a single kick in her smackdown.

  • willbest

    The more I think about the White situation the less sense it makes. The only reason to not put him on the 53 is because you don’t want to signal to your team that you are done for the year. The not get hurt in a meaningless game claptrap could apply to everybody you know you are bringing back next year. Getting him some game time play would be invaluable for his development.

    Well that isn’t the only reason. The other reason is he is too hurt to play, which is troubling.

    • Big Mike

      It’s a good call. The more time he has to rehab and heal the better. Playoff contender, he probably is on the 53. The players know the reality of this team’s season. They’ll say the right things about not being out, until they are mathematically eliminated etc, etc. But they know they are playing for next year.

    • The Trib guys, who were on this from the beginning, said there is concern about him compensating for the injured leg and thus developing injuries elsewhere (hip, other leg, etc.).

      The injury has fully healed, but he hasn’t had time to get the injured leg back up to full strength, which increases the risk of a lower-body injury if he tries to play.

      • Cutty of Olivet Nazarene

        There is no reason to bring him back. They knew he’d fuck something else up even if his gimp leg….that he admitted he doesn’t fully trust yet….held up somehow. It would not hold up of course since he is not in football shape and has been rehabbing not training.
        I want a fully healthy and mentally/physically prepared Kevin White to come in next year and contribute.

        • BillW

          There was though talk of him making the 53 so he could continue practicing – but he would not be playing in any games. I was a bit surprised they didn’t go that route. I thought maybe that experience would be more valuable than whatever the 53rd guy would bring (given our record).

          • CanadaBear

            Maybe they figured out health wise, practice has been more dangerous than games.

      • Irish Sweetness

        Exactly, he hasn’t been using all of his leg muscles and stretching ligaments/tendons. The injury might be healed, but his legs are not 100%.

    • Sactowns#1

      Exactly. My guess is this guy has 1 or maybe 2 injury riddled seasons before he hangs up his cleats.

      • based on a one-off injury? Really? Basically zero injury history (albeit with limited track record) before this. But you have to let a guy have more than one injury, especially one that’s non-recurring like this, before calling him injury prone.

        • The GP

          Has he got Brandon Hardin bones?

          • CanadaBear

            NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

          • Brandon Hardin had a long injury history in college. White didn’t.

            Hardin was always a stupid pick. He was a borderline starter in college who had a multitude of nagging injuries, but Emery spent a 3rd round pick on him because he looked and ran like a prototypical NFL safety, even if he played CB in college and wasn’t even good when healthy.

        • Sactowns#1

          Based on the type of injury. My guess is this guys body isn’t built to carry the load he’s trying to put on it (most likely through the miracle of modern science). You see it quite often. Hope I’m wrong.

          • I can’t think of a case where shin splints have been a precursor to worse things that are career-ending when they’re taken care of properly like this. Can you?

          • Sactowns#1

            I can think of quite a few in basketball. in the NFL Jason Anderson comes to mind.

  • 505Bears

    Someone is riding Gouldy’s jock…damn!!

    • Anonymous

      Nah, just decent perspective. Crosby, Walsh and Prater have had their issues too, and none of them has ever been as good as Robbie.

      • Huge Bear’s Penis

        Crosby, Walsh and Prater should have been cut too when they were having their issues.

        • The GP

          I liked it best when they sung with Neil Young.

          • BillW

            I didn’t even see your post. Didn’t mean to jump you. Well done!

        • CanadaBear

          Sherman’s march to the sea. Cut everybody!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Huge Bear’s Penis

            yep to hell with them implement a scorched earth tactic.

        • BillW

          Crosby, Walsh, Prater & Young.

          • AlbertInTucson

            “It’s getting to the point, where I’m no fun anymore…”

      • willbest

        You mean like how Prater was cut for not getting it done in Denver. And the Lions cut their previous kicker because he was getting it done less than Prater?

      • Irish Sweetness

        ‘has been’.

    • SC Dave

      Andrew’s sober assessment is very refreshing after all the hysteric buffoonery on this blog over the past few days.

      • CanadaBear

        Even Cheesy was a voice of reason. Of course, Robbie better get his shit together if he wants to remain in Chicago. Fox won’t do anything about it this season but if Robbie continues to struggle he’s going to have a lot of competition in camp and probably have to take a pay cut to stay. Love to see him get his mojo back. That and longer kickoffs.

        • I’m kind of surprised they didn’t bring in K for tryouts this week. Not to instantly cut Robbie, but just to send him a message.

          • CanadaBear

            Not sure if it’s a sign of respect or if they are trying not to make the yips any worse.

          • AlbertInTucson

            I think it’s just a “Why bother right now?” thing.

          • AlbertInTucson

            He DID make two, including one from 50 or so, against the 49ers.

            I don’t see any reason to make a change at this point.

          • Irish Sweetness

            It comes down to this – how many games are you willing to allow your kicker to lose? He’s fucked the playoffs on us already, so really, why keep him around? Sentimentality? Fuck that.

          • Johnnywad

            I can’t believe he would need a message sent. He probably already knows its not good for business to miss kicks that win or tie games.

          • BillW

            I thought they might too – but actually more as a message to the rest of the team. That they are all auditioning for next year – even the best kicker in Bears history.

        • AlbertInTucson

          “Even ***** was a voice of reason.”.

          Next time, just scrape your fingernails on the blackboard to make me cringe.

          • CanadaBear

            I hear ya but gotta give credit where it’s due. I feel so dirty.

          • AlbertInTucson

            “I feel so dirty.”

            As well you should!

        • willbest

          Its this simple. If you have a conservative coach you need a baller kicker. Gould isn’t baller any more.

          • CanadaBear

            My biggest issues with Robbie aren’t the misses recently. That happens to almost every kicker. He has to be the worst onside kicker in history and not kicking it out of the end zone are my issues. The onside issue doesn’t pop up often but you know it’s not going to end well when it does.

          • willbest

            Well that is just it. You forgive him his sins because he was exceptional at FGs. He is no longer exceptional at FGs. Can you find a very good FG guy who is a lot better at OSK and kickoffs? I think yes.

          • MB30SD

            this too

          • CanadaBear

            Still gotta factor in kicking in Soldier Field. That’s a big ask compared to most stadiums. Overall in his career he’s usually been the best kicker on the field when the conditions sucked moose wang. Part of that is home field familiarity but I always appreciated that part of his game.

          • MB30SD

            this

      • Huge Bear’s Penis

        cut him

      • The GP
        • SC Dave

          Hmmm… ok.

  • Doc Nitty

    If it’s wrong to hope for an emergency so I can go on a helicopter ride with my brother, then I don’t want to be right.

    • MB30SD

      what in thee

  • The GP

    FWIW, all the analysts that have been on Holmes show or with Mully from PFW and other places all say the same thing: there’s nobody on the horizon likely to offer Gase a HC gig this offseason.

    • AlbertInTucson
      • Anonymous

        Yowza. That sure would add some intrigue to the division.

      • The GP

        Here’s why I don’t think it goes that way:

        Lions hired Ernie Acorsi to turn the ship around. Acorsi was hired by George last year to do the same thing. He’s become like these execs who specialize in turnarounds.

        He just got through setting the Bears up with Pace and Fox, and now he’s going to take money from a NFC North rival and poach the OC of the last team he helped?

        That’s bad politics in the boys club of the NFL.

        • AlbertInTucson

          You make a very cogent point.

        • Accorsi’s job was to find the Bears a GM, and he helped with HC. Don’t think he had anything to do with OC search.
          Personally, I’d love if other teams start hiring Bears coordinators away for HC jobs. That’s a fantastic problem to have

          • The GP

            Personally, I’d love if other teams start hiring Bears coordinators away for HC jobs. That’s a fantastic problem to have

            No, it’s not. It usually ends up badly for the team that got poached. We would like the Lions to hire another Jim Shorts.

          • CanadaBear

            The best part about the Ford family’s reign? Their ability to be so wrong and so patient.

          • MB30SD

            …so often.

          • BillW

            It’s just another process that balances out all the teams. A team gets good players but loses some of them to FA. They get good coordinators and lose some of them to other coaching jobs. They get good scouts and front office assistants and they become someone else’s GM.

            It’s the only way a league with 32 teams can possibly keep the fan bases of every team interested every year. Everyone has to feel they are only 3-4 years at most away from a Super Bowl.

            Even though 100 years will likely go by without every team winning one.

    • Anonymous

      Do they provide a reason beyond “better candidates”? I always assumed Gase would have a tough time immediately landing an HC job coming from a sub .500 team. In-house promotions can happen that way but otherwise seems like most of the HC gigs go to coordinators coming fresh from winning programs.

      Doesn’t rule out a potential college job, I suppose.

    • Bender McLugh

      I can’t be the only one happy about that.

      • BillW

        While I wonder about Gase (as a play caller and game planner – not a coach) I really don’t’ want them to go through yet another change at that position next year.

        • Bender McLugh

          I have no wonder about Gase yet. If he falls flat without all the injuries next year then I’ll be worried.

    • This makes sense. The HC jobs traditionally go to playoff OC/DCs or to hot shot college coaches.

      The NFL is conservative by nature. Gase the Cutty whisperer is a song and dance it heard before. Doubt after one year of it that teams will be willing to risk Gase over say Wade, Payton, McDaniels (insert college coach) etc

  • AlbertInTucson

    White Sox just picked up 3bMan Todd Frazier.

    There will be MUCH wailing & gnashing of teeth in Cincy.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Happy 53rd to “The Fridge”!

    • BillW

      He may be large, but he’s no dumb cookie.

  • Bender McLugh

    Hats off to Kaner. Helluva run.

    • SC Dave

      And as good as it was, its barely half of gretzky’s record. Perhaps the most dominant professional athlete in team sports.

  • BillW

    Interesting development I see on Jeff’s Twitter feed. The Dolphins are cancelling the renewal rights for many season ticket holders because they sold too many tickets on the NFL Ticket Exchange.

    Yes – the NFL Ticket Exchange. That the league advertises heavily. Sounds like a class action lawsuit in the making.

    I have to look more carefully to see if such a clause is in my season ticket agreement. I do know there is a clause that says I can lose my tickets (and PSL) if anyone using my ticket is ejected for unruly or illegal behavior.

    So we make sure sure we ONLY sell to people we know well, Or on the NFL Ticket Exchange. My reasoning is how can they take away my tickets if I sell on the very site they are asking me to use? If it ever happened to anyone I’m sure there are more than baker’s dozen of lawyers who would take on that case for free.

    • willbest

      I suppose the Dolphins problem is that the people buying it are not Dolphin fans, whereas in Chicago most the time you are selling to another Bears fan.

      It would seem to me that that sort of clause would need to be individually signed for if they wanted to avoid a lawsuit.

      • BillW

        As Big Mike said, there may well be a personal use clause of some type in there. Meaning it’s OK to sell a game here and there, but not buy a season ticket package for the purpose of reselling.

        Though I know that must be happening in seats around us. There are different people in certain seats all the time and I’m pretty sure our entire section is PSLs only.

    • BearDown100393

      The Dolphins should be happy anyone is pre-paying to watch their games.

      • AlbertInTucson

        Are you implying that the Boy Named Suh isn’t worth the price of a ticket?

        • BearDown100393

          Only if he stomps on the owner’s head.

    • Big Mike

      If you sell ALL of your tickets, its clear you are not using them for personal enjoyment, but rather to make $. I bet their is a personal use clause of some type.

  • Irish boner alert: John Timu expected to get some playing time on D this Sunday.

    • Irish Sweetness

      An AP homing missile?

  • BillW

    Confused by Jeff’s tweet saying Gase should jump at a HC job because he’d have pressure to perform next year with the Bears as OC.

    Probably the 140 character limit or whatever it is, but it sounds like an insult to him. Take a job with a losing team because you’ll be (temporarily) viewed as a savior as opposed to staying here and possibly failing.

    How about staying here and finishing the job rather than starting over with a (likely) far worse team? Because of the pressure to succeed?

    Or are you trying to taunt him into staying?

    • Anonymous

      Gase should jump at an HC job because such opportunities don’t wait on more experience/better timing.

    • DaBearsBlog

      No I think he should take the job because if this offense – with the expected weaponry – fails next year, he ain’t getting another offer. I think he’s receiving praise right now he doesn’t entirely deserve. He should jump.

      • Sactowns#1

        What expected weaponry are you speaking of? There’s a LOT up in the air right now. We could end up with a potpourri of poop.

        • Alshon is likely staying. White is an instant upgrade over Wilson, Bellami, Mariani, no matter how cyncal a fan anyone is.

          Langford/Carey can produce as much as Forte, and who knows, Forte might still stick.

          Gotta assume Royal won’t be hobbling two years in a row, and even if he is, we’ll upgrade the slot more than likely.

          Miller is a great TE (when healthy), though I would love to invest in a TE in the draft. They usually take about 2-3 yrs to develop anyway, so it would be prudent, esp considering Miller’s inj history.

          The Oline seems solid, barring inj.

          The O should be ready to roll.

          My only concern is that Gase gets “figured out” like Trestman in his second yr, though it’s not as if Gase’s O was more prolific than Trestman’s O in his first year.

          Fox’s conservative nature might make Gase more predictable. That worries me more than the chess pieces.

          • Huge Bear’s Penis

            my guess is being overly conservative this year is more a result of trying to win the time of possession game therefore keeping our crappy D off the field. once the D gets a couple more pieces it will allow Gase to open the offense up a little more.

            I see a lot of similarities on the Offense with what Dallas did last year, Run the ball limit Romo’s mistakes, unfortunately Dallas just had a better Oline than we have. The tools are there for the O but we got to burn clock to protect the D.

          • Irish Sweetness

            Franchise on AJ is $12.8M – hands up who thinks he’s worth that?

          • willbest

            1) Bears aren’t hurting for cap
            2) Bears have no chance to bring anybody near as talented as AJ if they let him walk
            3) Bears offense goes from sucky in yards per play, to respectable when he is in the game.
            4) You are going to pay him an average of $13 million a year on a 4-5 year deal anyway. So you aren’t really wasting money by tagging him.
            The real risk in him playing on the tag is that he is healthy dominates the way he has this year (would be 100+ catches 1500+ yards and 7 TDs in a full season) and then you are forced to pay him $15 mil a year with 30 mil in guarantees.

          • Anonymous

            Miller is “great”? Seems a stretch. He’s certainly good when healthy but Miller at his peak is not Uni at his peak and I don’t even know if I would call peak Uni great.

          • Well, really there’s only one ‘great’ TE in the NFL right now and that’s Gronk.
            Then comes the Eifert/Barnidge/Olsen tier, and i wholeheartedly believe a healthy Miller can be in that tier.
            We all saw the wheels on him. He’s a good blocker, and more importantly has a Wittenish knack for big plays.
            That’s how i view him. As a more athletic Witten, and to me that’s high praise.

          • Anonymous

            Fair enough. I don’t see all that, but yes, if those qualities are there they would warrant such high praise.

      • Irish Sweetness

        Are there people praising Gase though? For what?

        • Anonymous

          Cutler. He has not had such a good INT percentage in years. Best he has looked since Martz.

  • Doc Nitty

    Took a ride in a whirlybird today, saw Fort Knox from the chopper, and for the second day in a row, nobody I know got killed in South Central L.A.

    I have to say, today was another good day!

    • The GP

      you are just like Pussy Galore!

      • MB30SD

        Hahahaha… I had the EXACT thought. Although doc looks NOTHING like pussy galore.

        Love the was Connery pronounced it. Pooosy.

        • The GP

          But of course.

        • AlbertInTucson

          Played by Honor Blackman, who (as Catherine Gale) also preceded Diana Rigg (Emma Peel) on THE AVENGERS with Patrick MacNee.

          She’s also Hera in the Ray Harryhausen JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS.

          She turned 90 in August.

          • MB30SD

            Holy crap

          • Shady

            jetpacks?

          • MB30SD

            Jetpacks.

          • AlbertInTucson

            I second that emotion.

        • Doc Nitty

          You mean Pussy galore doesn’t look like this?

          https://imgflip.com/gif/vwjvg

          • MB30SD

            Dooooood! That beard is looking BEASTLY!

      • Doc Nitty

        I know it’s s Bond character but don’t get the reference. Please enlighten me.

  • BillW

    Dusted off an old simulation I did. If winning a Super Bowl was completely random, there is a 76% chance that over a hundred year period, at least one team will have not won a Super Bowl.

    A 40% chance that at least TWO teams don’t win one.

    It’s not random. but the league wants to make it as close to that in the short term as possible with the draft, a hard cap, FA, and now professional assistance in hiring GMs and coaches.

    That’s the only way to keep 32 fan bases engaged every year.

    • Scharfinator

      And…. in theory, more perfect of competition.

  • Sactowns#1
  • One scenario no one has mentioned.

    What if the Lions trade for Sean Payton?

    Some have linked him to MIA but Stafford, Megatron, Tate etc might be tempting. The lions were a playoff team only a year ago and chance to turn around another franchise w high picks

    • MB30SD

      The Lions will always lion themselves in the end, no matter how close they get.

      Because, well because. .. they’re the lions.

  • The GP
  • couldn’t agree more with Andy about the 2nd/3rd down calls before Mould’s FG.

    Needed to get it much closer in those conditions considering how mediocre Mould has been lately. It’s a matter of understanding personell. However, maybe Gase did say to hit the underneath and Cutty couldn’t help himself. It’s not as if Cutty going rogue is an anomaly. We simply don’t know.

    The thing with Mould (I keep referring to him as that cuz now he’s Mediocre, and no longer Good) isn’t just the missed FG, but as others have pointed out, not kicking it out of the back of the endzone, onside awefulness and price tag coupled with choking.

    I look at kickers like Gowtoski (FF gold!), Tucker, etc, and I want a K like THAT.

    Why not? Fans are always scared of the unknown, but no reason we can’t shoot for that type of K in the next draft. Don’t we have a few extra 6th rounders (and we’ll get an extra 6th once we trade Bennett)?

    Use one of them on the top young cheap college K in the next draft (as opposed to some sp teamer who’ll likely wash out) and save that mula for other positions.

    And while we’re at it, give das boot to our Punter. Anyone watch the MIA P nail two punts in a row inside the 5?

    Yeah, we ain’t getting that from muscles.

    • willbest

      O’Donnells stats would be better if our gunners could down the football inside the 5 rather than looking around aimlessly for them and then letting them roll into the end zone.

      • Then he should be able to coffin corner, sail it out at the 10.

        What good is a great leg if the coverage sucks or he can’t angle it out or back spin it so it dies below the 10?

        O’Donnell has a leg and little else, and sometimes not even that.

        I wouldn’t mind giving him maybe 1 more yr cuz he’s still young, but we should def have a competition (beginning this year) and if some unknown guy FA like Trest Way beats him again, go with that.

  • All this talk about Gase as HC, not buying it.

    Wasn’t Trestman’s Offense more potent than Gase’s in its first year? And I don’t think it’s even close.

    Just something to keep in the back of the noodle.

    • willbest

      The 2013 Bears had a couple things going for it. The quad threat of Marty, Jeffery, Marshal, and Forte. A competent and healthy offensive line. A new offensive scheme (or just one people hadn’t seen in a while).

      By 2014 the O-line was riddled with injury, early losses snowballed into unhappy players due to poor coaching, and defenses figured out how to defend against predictable offensive play calling.
      This year we have an O-line in transition, and only 1 receiver that commands respect from opposing defenses and he has missed half the season. A tight end that was phoning it in, and a Forte who is showing his age.

      I am going to jump in my quantum mechanics machine and say if the Bears had kept Marshall they would have made the playoffs and possibly taken the division. Hell they would still be in the playoff race right now if Jeffery hadn’t missed the Broncos game. But what are you going to do. Pace had a plan of Jeffery, White, Royal, Wilson, Mariani you don’t expect that to turn into Jeffery/Wilson, Mariani, Bellamy, and Forte.

      • In some ways, that’s what I’m getting at.
        Trestman’s O in its first year WAS better, and MUCH better, than Gase’s, for most of the reasons you illustrated.

        However, I don’t think other NFL teams are going to say to themselves, “Well, if Gase had White, and Royal, and not a mercurial TE, and a makeshift Oline…”

        That’s a lot of IFs to gamble on your next HC.

        Gase’s greatest “accomplishment” is making Cutty look good, and even THAT might be debatable.

        It could just be that Cutty of Olivet Nazerene transfigured himself and Gase was merely there to bare witness.

        Like I said, a bunch of unknowns with Gase and if I were another team, I would def wait one more year to see if all those hypotheticals pan out.

        • Anonymous

          It might be debatable but it would be HIGHLY coincidental that 32 year old Cutler suddenly figured it out on his own when a highly respected young OC showed up who studied under Martz under whom Cutty, up till now, had his best showing as a Bear.

          32 year old QBs who suddenly “figure it out” in this league probably do so mainly because of three reasons:

          1) a huge upgrade in surrounding talent, which isn’t the case regarding Cutler
          2) better offensive/QB coaching, hello Adam Gase
          3) limiting their workload/responsiblities, which again might go back to Gase in restricting Cutler’s audibles

          What Cutler brought, beside his own talent and commitment, might have been extra incentive. Knowing that Pace tried everything to move him in the off-season might have lit an extra fire under his arse.

          • I agree. I was thinking of other “turn-around” QBs, and most have in common good OCs or OCs who maximized their strengths while minimizing weakness.

            Favre, Warner, Elway off the top of my head.

            Though as with most things, it was probably personal growth marrying system and scheme.

            But would Gase be able to reproduce this Cutty result with say, Lesbo or Tannenhill?

            Once again, that’s a BIG “maybe.”

            It’s possible the Lions or Fins, etc are willing to gamble that he can, but like I stated, the NFL tends to be conservative.

      • Anonymous

        Having said all that, and despite our issues with WAS D-line, our O-line might be the best in the division this year. GB’s has been below average. Same with DET’s, which was absolutely atrocious at the beginning of the year. And MIN’s has probably been about average. I will take ours over any of theirs. They’ve played well overall.

  • Bender McLugh
  • Bender McLugh
    • MB30SD

      Don’t know if you know the story behind old lazenby, but he royally (get it) fucked up a very golden opty.

      • Bender McLugh

        I heard something about that, but no, I don’t know the whole story

        • MB30SD

          there’s this thing called the innerness my maings. smh.

          ; )

  • Irish Sweetness

    That’s a LOT of Gould-defending. And saying that we wouldn’t have won anyway because Washington would have scored again?

    However, there are 7 place kickers with a worse % than Robbie, and Gregg Zeurlein has missed 8 of his 23 attempts. Ouch.

  • Ladies and Germs, I present, Myles Jack, LB, UCLA. (from Bruin to Bear!)

    http://www.footballinsiders.com/myles-jack-is-breaking-the-mold/

    • EnderWiggin

      Yeah

    • MB30SD

      Risky… and I love my bruins

  • EnderWiggin

    I know this is the wrong forum, but I am so pumped for Star Wars I won’t be able to sleep.

    • MB30SD

      #nerdz

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