87 Comments

Preseason Bears Roster Falls To Lions (Rapid Fire)

| January 4th, 2016

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Another coin flip game, another coin flip loss. No reason to dissect every element so here are a few thoughts from inside the ballpark you might find interesting.

  • John Timu ran the defense. And I mean ran it. Called the signals, made adjustments, pursued on every play. You’d have thought he was a six-year veteran. Impressive stuff.
  • Kyle Long could barely walk at times after his early injury. He’s a tough SOB. But I kept wondering what reasons Bears could have to keep marching him out there.
  • Pernell McPhee’s criticism of Bears fans at Soldier Field is warranted. The noise produced downstairs – from goal line to goal line – is slight. Most of those people seem to have no understanding of when a home crowd is needed. They were louder for the Dunkin Donuts race on the big screen than any third down on defense.

  • The final interception happened directly in front of me and when the ball left Cutler’s hand my entire section thought it was a touchdown. Then Deonte Thonpson did something remarkable. He just kept running and didn’t turn around until well after the ball was picked five yards behind him. Weird part is he got himself wide open! If he simply stops and turns around it’s an easy completion and he’s one missed tackle from the end zone.
  • There was a tee shirt on sale at Soldier Field for $60.  A tee shirt!
  • Bears really miss Peanut Tillman in these Lions games. They don’t have a big, physical corner to keep Calvin Johnson from moving the chains.
  • It’s wasn’t very difficult to recognize Adam Gase’s play calls once the Bears lined up. I nailed about 15 of them. Have to believe this was result of limited roster.
  • Brad Biggs’ point that Bears are looking up at the NFC North is a bit silly. They played six games against division opponents and four were won in the final moments. Bears showed in 2015 they will be close to the top of this division in 2016 with the right personnel moves.

Final press conferences today. Will be active both here and on Twitter responding. Welcome to the 2016 offseason!

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  • SC Dave

    Maybe the dimwits running the jumbotron need to prompt the dimwits in the stands when to make noise?

    • Unfortunate reality with tickets so damn expensive is that the people who go are primarily rich, not diehard fans.

      • The GP

        True to an extent. There were plenty of affordable tickets to this one.

        The fact is the city fans are a bit over this franchise right now. Alot of the people there were probably “here take my ticket” people who don’t get into football that much. Many of the blue bloods stayed home.

        • Scharfinator

          I could see that, especially when you consider how well other Chicago teams are doing.

          • BillW

            Bears will always be Chicago’s top team in fan interest overall. But the combination of several non-playoff seasons with another sports team success and that changes temporarily. Like the Bulls run in the 90s. Once that stopped, it was back to the Bears even though they weren’t real championship contenders.

        • Irish Sweetness

          (facepalm)

        • Big Mike

          This is absolutely what happens. Not only because the Bears were 6-9 coming into the game, but from the get go the week 17 ticket is one of the softest. It’s guaranteed to be cold, it’s right after all of the holidays, if the Bears are good you don’t see starters, if the bear are bad, it’s likely to be an awful game, given that it is the very last regular season game almost guaranteed that some top name players won’t be playing, and lastly the other team could be resting starters.

          What we had yesterday was two mediocre teams, one so banged up that our QB was throwing to a 7th round pick and 2 undrafted free agents. A tight end named Housler?

          • Huge Bear’s Penis

            could have been worst we could have been playing with a tight end named Kellen Davis.

          • BillW

            No takers for our tickets on the NFL Exchange. Not surprising for all the reasons stated by you. Especially the with so many low level players in the starting lineup.
            I would contend this was not the game to judge the overall enthusiasm of a Bears home game. But maybe I have a different viewpoint since our seats are in the North end zone. Always loud there. I always revert back to my 20s-30s at a game.

            I would also add to the “the city is over this team”. With the Blackhawks and now Cubs, and the lack of playoffs for the Bears for quite a while, it’s just not worth spending your day going out there.

            Add to that 1-7 at home. They won as many games in Lambeau as Soldier Field.

            WE on the blog know there has been significant progress made. But people who go to a game want to see a win, not progress.

            (Our tickets did not go unused though. I’m curious though if there were a lot of no shows)

          • BillW

            BTW – if they start telling the crowd when to cheer on the video boards I will get depressed.

            They had that dumb noise meter once that I recall. Gag! I was at a preseason game many years ago when they did the wave. Some things just don’t go with Chicago Bears.

            They do at times have “Quiet – offense at work” messages. So terribly sad.

          • SC Dave

            You do what is needed to help the team win within the rules.

          • BillW

            I’m not against that concept. Just sad that’s needed.

          • MB30SD

            they do this at every single game in ever single stadium and on every TV broadcast I’ve ever seen?! When has this become abnormal.

          • BillW

            Though this will make me sound like the old man that I am, it never used to be needed. I have vivid memories of games at Wrigley in the late 60s. Not a great team esp in 69. No one had to tell us when to cheer and when to be quiet.

            But times change obviously. Today’s video game generation may well need that.

            Maybe the team ought to send out text messages or Twitter notices to the fans in the stands.

          • SC Dave

            The home record is a problem to be sure.

          • Big Mike

            Exactly. My tickets are section 333. I go to 1 or 2 games a year tops. I live in the DC area. Week 17 tickets were gifted at Christmas to a couple nephews who have never been. Season’s past they’ve gone to everyone from a bartender, my doctor, a teacher, a neighbor etc. BTW in spite of the terrible record, tickets pay for themselves +

  • The GP

    Jed Dork is the petulant rich prick from a Michael J Fox movie, the one who gets comeuppance in the end.

    • BearDown100393

      Dork personifies San Francisco.

  • The GP

    Mcphee’s injury must be such that he can’t injure it any more. Because he’s running around out there on one leg. It’s insane he would steal snaps from Houston at the end. They must really hate Houston.

    • Big Mike

      I don’t think Bears hate Houston. Maybe McPhee went when he could?

    • BearDown100393

      McPhee is all heart but what was the point playing him injured?

  • Big Mike

    I love Jeff’s title for this post. Absolutely true.

  • Big Mike

    Also.. isn’t the 2016 off season what we’ve really been waiting for 🙂

    • Irish Sweetness

      Yessir. The draft. Free agency. Can’t wait. This season just had to be got through … but no doubt, Cutty was the revelation. Biggest question mark before the season. Quarterback situation. #sorted

      • Big Mike

        Some other things we learned/proved final. No particular order.
        -McClellin gone
        – Callahan – will compete for time
        – Amos – good pick
        – Slausen > Grasu at Center
        – Langsford – starting quality back
        – Kadeem Carey – useful
        – Zach Miller – good TE, great as 2nd TE pass threat

        – Alshon – Bears 7 pts per game better with him.

        – Marques Wilson – potential proven, needs to stay on the field.
        – Marcus Mariani – earned a spot on the team.

        – Thompson – better KR than Mariani
        – Oline still needs a player or 2.

        – Goldman – real deal
        -Houston, Young, – earned spot on team. Quality Depth. Good starters.

        • Scharfinator

          I agree with everything but Wilson/Mariani. I don’t know if they stay as there are a number of better players on the roster at their position.

          • Big Mike

            I see Mariani as the backup slot guy. Wilson sticks while White gets his training wheels off. I think Wilson was clearly better than Bellamy and Meredith. Assuming Alshon stays, I see Jeffery, White, Royal, Wilson, Mariani as the WR group. With one slot open.

          • Scharfinator

            Hmm that’s fair. Do you think we keep Royal? He can’t stay healthy and he is old.

          • Big Mike

            Hard to say on Royal. His injury was a mystery. If Royal is not on the roster, the Bears don’t really have a slot guy other than Mariani. I think an upgrade would be in order. Wilson is wasted at the slot, not sure White can handle it either. Seems like they’d need to add a guy.

          • willbest

            He has to be, we are paying him next year whether he is on the roster or not.

          • CanadaBear

            Royal’s contract is guaranteed for 2016. He’s coming back for sure. Might not make the roster but they won’t pay him to go away unless he’s horrible next training camp.

          • Big Mike

            Good info.

          • CanadaBear

            Just happened to read it about 15 minutes ago. Otherwise, I’m sure I would have forgotten it!

          • MB30SD

            if he can stay healthy the guy is a stud. He’s a great possession receiver. I know my charger fan buddies loved him. He just needs to be on the field.

        • BearDown100393

          Alshon also cuts down on interceptions. He might be worth more than 7.

          • Big Mike

            That is true.

  • #Truths dead cousin

    Tomsula stinks, you dope.

    • Huge Bear’s Penis

      Wow such great insight and really profound, especially like the name calling.

      • MB30SD

        great first-time post huh? A true thinker! smfh

        • Johnnywad

          Remember Bacon’s first post? Now that was a first time post. One for the ages.

      • #Truths dead cousin

        Well, he is a dope.

    • Big Mike

      Their mistake our gain. Should have promoted Fangio.

      • BearDown100393

        Just asking but did Fangio really want to stick around?

        • Big Mike

          Even worse. He wanted the HC job, but they promoted Tomsula who was Fangio’s Defensive Line coach. Then they asked Fangio to stay and work for a guy who has less experience then him. Complete bush league move.

          • CanadaBear

            They really wanted a yes man in SF. Gase turned down the job because they insisted he hire Tomsula as DC.

          • Sactowns#1

            Yes Guy should have gotten the job.

  • wreckinball

    Mock drafts coming out
    Reggie Ragland ILB?

  • wreckinball

    Leonard Floyd
    Pass rushing LBs
    We’ll see what they actually do

  • Big Mike

    Also a reminder why listening to experts and all off-season draft speculation and commentary is just for fun.
    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/694994-carolina-panther-cam-newton-is-the-worst-nfl-draft-pick-ever

    • “In five years, when Tebow is leading Denver into the playoffs and Cam Newton is riding someone’s bench, remember this article.”

      • SC Dave

        Ooops.

        • MB30SD

          hee hee

      • Sactowns#1

        Hahahaha. Classic.

  • willbest

    Kyle on the field was probably a product of Kyle and not Fox’s if you are medically cleared and have the desire, you are out there attitude.

    As for the noise at Soldier Field, its an expensive event on the 100 and 200 levels. I would suspect there is an inverse relationship between the wealth required to attend the game as such, and the impulse associated with screaming loudly.

    I also suspect that the retrofit design of Soldier Field dampens the sound, and if you couple that with the fact that its the smallest stadium in the NFL, has a crappy field, and wind off the lake it is unsurprising that it leads itself to one of the worst home field advantages in football. What they need is some 90,000 seat stadium out around where Sears is now headquartered.

    • MB30SD

      agree on all accounts, but there’s too much history at Soldier (I’ve been 3 times now).

      Let’s be honest here will… what chicago really needs isn’t a new stadium or a different design, or cheaper seats (it does, but that ain’t happnin), what chicago really needs is a good fucking football team.

      …A CONSISTENTLY good fucking football team. Something we haven’t had in a log ling time. We get that and all this other piddly little shit that doesn’t matter just melts into the background.

      I think we have the scaffolding in place to get us there, we just need some offseason magic a few years in a row and much better injury luck.

      • The GP

        The Vikes have SEVEN 1st round draft picks, picked over the last 3 years, all starting or playing ST. That is why their D is stout and tough and why they are in.

        Talent outweighs coaching in the end. The Vikes just needed somebody competent, not brilliant, to assemble all that talent.

        • Johnnywad

          Holy shit. Seven. Man it just seems so damn lopsided and unfair when put down in black and white.

      • willbest

        Sure but how do you get a better football team in here? Better front office and better coaching leads to better players. But better facilities can help too. I know field conditions are the same for both teams, so the swirling vortex off the lake affects Gould and Kicker X equally, but since the Bears find themselves playing there 8 games a year, they are more likely to have the elements interfere with a critical play.

        Now a new stadium is not a small investment, so I guess you have to decide if that 5-10% improvement is worth the billion dollars or whatever.

      • Huge Bear’s Penis

        God I HATE the too much history argument!!! Nostalgic BULLSHIT!!! If the Yankees can build a new stadium there is no reason any team should use the too much history argument.

    • BillW

      I may not be around to see it, but I always tell my kids to be prepared for having to re=up the seat licenses for the new stadium that will be built eventually.

      • BillW

        Actually – since they lost the historical designation anyway, they may simply choose to reconfigure Soldier Field correctly the next time, rather than the restricted retro-fit they felt forced to do.

  • The GP

    I would like to be the first in the offseason to please knock it off with the “let’s trade down” mentality that we see every year. (I’m looking at Irish here)

    Trading down sucks. Trading down gets you Will Sutton when you needed Aaron Donald. It gets you Chicken Dinner when Keuchley was there a few spots higher. We need to trade UP.

    • Big Mike

      We have the picks to do it this year. Trade up is no lock. it all comes down to how accurate your draft board is. Bears have so many needs, they are in position to take their highest ranked player. It’s bound to be one of their need areas. OL/DK/DT/DE/ILB/OLB/Safety/CB all have needs. So let’s say you have a grouping of 4 guys in tight group on your board and a dropoff to the 5th guy. You have to get within 3 picks. Very likely one of your guys is not in the top 3. That means you roll the dice once that a guy you like isn’t 4th. Then you do what you can to trade down to 8th spot. Done. No going backwards, unless someone overpays. (2 #1 picks, with one being in the top 15).

    • Huge Bear’s Penis

      I don’t think trading up more than a spot or two is usually worth it. we got a lot of holes to fill need all the draft picks possible, even at 11 we should be able to get a top tier player at one of the positions of need.

    • MB30SD

      Theeees!

  • The GP

    For all of Gase’s brilliance, he still couldn’t coach Jay to step up in the pocket. If you look at both INTs, they hit his arm from the back side. In both situations, there was ample room to step up and into the throw.

    But it’s uncoachable with Jay. A lifetime of backpedalling with the gun slinging has him mentally locked out of stepping into a pocket.

    Before Waffle descends the Stukas, yes the blocking sucked. But at times a pocket was there, you can’t keep staying on the back side of it.

    • willbest

      I was only casually paying attention yesterday. Was Jay throwing into a window where if he would have taken the half second to step up it would be closed?

      • The GP

        No.

        The A gap team of G-C-G was holding the line. Slauson is a rock. But Jay has a lifetime of having that interior collapse like an egg souffle in a earthquake, and getting run into by his own interior lineman that are being driven like the snow against a Chicago plow.

        Too many years of taking snaps from Garza and then having the Hroniss Bonus thrown in, he’s had time to step up and even interior lanes to run, but he’s so conditioned to stay back and use his arm he won’t do it. In both cases, he was hit on the elbow/bicept where he had room to step up. Both hits sailed the ball and they were easily picked.

        • CanadaBear

          I saw him step up lots of times this year but mostly in the first half of the season. No doubt stepping up yesterday would have helped.

    • SC Dave

      Jay has done that a lot.

  • BillW

    We’ve hit the time of year when I need to defer to my more informed brethren here about draft prospects. I don’t follow college football much. I do agree with GP on not trading down.

    I’ll keep reading but very little if anything of value to be added by me. I do trust that Pace has a plan in place for the Gase and/or Fangio departing, Jeffrey, Forte, Shea, Kyle Long, backup QB, their first round pick, etc. Looking forward to seeing it unfold.

    I’ve said it many times this year. (For what it is worth) I do sense a great team is being constructed. It may take a couple more years – but it is coming.

  • CanadaBear

    Talking about home field advantage, Soldier Field has 2. The worst playing surface in the league and swirling winds. The Bears should be able to use the shitty field to their advantage all the time. They should be used to it. Robbie has really taken advantage of the swirling winds. It’s rare the Bears are at a disadvantage kicking in SF. It happens, of course, but overall Robbie has been way better than the opponents kicker when they are in SF.

  • Sactowns#1

    Congrats BMarsh on taking your team to the playoffs. I wish you were still a Bear. I think we all do. (Baby come back plays softly in the background)

    • Trac

      Ah sac, the Jets missed the playoffs dude.

      • Big Mike

        I think he’s in for a shock when he reads the news. Unless he was being sarcastic.

        • Trac

          They were 10-6. I can see why he made that mistake.

          • Big Mike

            Bears fans know what it is like to finish 10 – 6 and be on the outside.

    • Sactowns#1

      Oh man too many bourbon gingers yesterday. I thought they made it. 🙁

      • CanadaBear

        I wasn’t sure if you were kidding or not. Oops!

    • Irish Sweetness

      Fuck yeah.

      And in his mind, Brandon is in the playoffs.

  • BillW

    Apparently based on PFT’s strength of schedule numbers, had we beat the Lions we’d be drafting where they are (16) and they’d be where we are (11). Try to keep that in mind on draft day.

    • Sactowns#1

      This is true but it didn’t make that defeat taste any better.

  • Frummerly

    Having had Bears season tickets in the family since 1970, and having gone to many, many games at both the old and new Soldier Field, the crowd noise issues are 100% a function of the fans being too quiet. The acoustics in the new stadium are designed for loudness (the stadium being more upright and compact than it used to be). Sound should stay in the stadium, unlike the old Soldier Field whose layout was akin to Michigan Stadium – an open bowl with major sound leakage.

    The issue is that games are not cheap, and those who can afford to sit in the lower sections between the endzones don’t want to yell. They’re more likely to shush you or tell you to sit down.

    That’ll change once the Bears are dominant again.

    • Irish Sweetness

      Welcome Frummerly, stick around. I’m tired of listening to me.

      • Frummerly

        will do!

  • CanadaBear

    New thread.

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