219 Comments

Across the Middle: 2018 Chicago Bears Coach Rankings

| November 9th, 2017

The Chicago Bears probably aren’t going to have a new coach in 2018. At least, not if they continue on their current pace.

Before the season I wrote that if the Bears won seven games, John Fox would be a lock to stay. Through eight games, they only have three wins, but have played the third-hardest schedule in the league, according to Football Outsiders. The last four games particularly have been really interesting.

It isn’t just that the Bears have gone 2-2. It’s that they really beat the crap out of one good team, should’ve won by a lot more against a mediocre team and were close to beating two of the best teams in the entire league.

It seems like the  majority of the fan base still isn’t happy. They don’t just want to win, they want to look good doing it. But that wouldn’t matter no matter who the coach is. Hell, a large percentage of those people want Jim Harbaugh, the master of the ugly wins, as the coach.

What the Bears have in Fox is a coach who has proven to be a builder of really good defenses. He built a Super Bowl-caliber defense in Carolina, then again in Denver and now in Chicago. He has the loudest voice in the draft room when it comes to defense.

The complaints are about the offense and I understand them, but consider these points:

• Fox had top-15 offenses in four out of five years with Jake Delhomme before Delhomme hit the wall.

• The offense the Bears are currently running isn’t the only offense they know how to run. Just last year, the Bears threw for over 4,000 yards with Brian Hoyer, Matt Barkley and a crippled Jay Cutler. They now have a rookie quarterback and UDFA receivers. They’re running the offense they need to run – just as Fox did with Tim Tebow. He then ran something completely different the next year.

• Can he “develop” Mitch Trubisky? Well, no fewer than five quarterbacks have had the best years of their careers under Fox. (Hoyer and Barkley doubled their salaries from one year to the next.) And we’ve seen growth in Trubisky in his four starts. Is there a real reason to not expect that to continue? Coaches often get too much credit for the development of quarterbacks and the Jeff Fisher/Jared Goff comparison is the flavor of the month. Steve McNair went from being an incredibly raw rookie to the league MVP. Who was his coach? Jeff Fisher. Vince Young played in one Pro Bowl. Who was his coach? Jeff Fisher. Maybe Goff just got better?

• The Bears need better players before we can talk about their offense being good. Teams can’t lose their top three receivers and have a good passing offense with a rookie quarterback. It just doesn’t happen.

• Ryan Pace likes his coach. Forget all the bull people said around the draft last year. Pace wants Fox to be his coach.

But I don’t think Fox is a lock. In theory, the Bears should win enough games for Fox to keep his job simply because second half schedule is significantly worse than the slate they played in the first half. Doesn’t it seem like every time you’re thinking Fox’s Bears are going to take a step, they let you down and flop backwards?

The Bears are supposed to be in a good spot coming off of the bye week, but they’re 0-2 after the bye under Fox, including a 36-10 beat down against the Bucs last year. Good teams get better as the season goes on and Fox’s teams have gotten worse with a December and January record of 2-8 and the two wins coming against teams that won a combined eight games. Not good.

This week, the Bears have a limping Packers team coming to Chicago. They have to win this game. It’s a chance to essentially put a nail on Green Bay’s coffin and possibly lead to a major change in their leadership. There’s no reason the Bears shouldn’t beat Brett Hundley.

If they don’t, I think the odds that Fox is the coach next year take a major dive. If that happens, here’s a ranking of the guys waiting in line:

2. John Morton, OC, NY Jets

There’s a common thought that, among coordinators, Morton is doing the most with the least amount of talent and it’s hard to argue with that. Morton worked with Ryan Pace in 2006 and has also worked with the likes of Norv Turner, Pete Carroll and Jim Harbaugh. Sean Payton thought enough of him to bring him back as a wide receivers coach in 2015 and Harbaugh hired him twice, once in San Diego and once in San Francisco. Being on the same staff as Vic Fangio in San Francisco, there’s a chance he might be able to convince him or Ed Donatell to stay on as the defensive coordinator.

3. Pat Shurmur, OC, Minnesota

If Morton isn’t the guy doing the most with the least, Shurmur is. The Vikings offense is 13th in scoring and 11th in yards despite playing most of the season with Case Keenum at quarterback.  They also lost running back Dalvin Cook after four games and were without Stefon Diggs for a few weeks. Yet, they’ve been continually successful and Shurmur deserves a lot of credit for that. He’s an old school West Coast offense guy who learned a lot of spread concepts from Chip Kelly. His record sucked in Cleveland, but it’s probably safe to say he wasn’t the problem.

4. Sean Payton, HC, New Orleans

How did he go from first to fourth? Because I just don’t think he’s going to be available. It was hard to not be impressed with the game Payton called against the Bears a couple of weeks ago. His team is now 6-2 and might be the front-runner in the NFC. Although there has long been a rumor that Payton is looking for another job, it would take a collapse for the Saints to finally decide to let him leave.

5. Matt Nagy, OC, KC & Frank Reich, OC, Philadelphia

I lumped these two together because I have the same reservation.

Both are offensive coordinators for high-scoring teams, but both work under head coaches who designed the offenses and call the plays. Nagy has always worked for Andy Reid, which is probably a good sign since a bright and successful coach has always made sure to employ him. Reich was fired in San Diego before being hired in Philadelphia. Of course a firing shouldn’t be looked on too harshly, after all, Sean Payton was fired in New York. With both guys, Pace would need to know exactly what they do before seriously considering them. From the outside, you’ll always hear team and media members praise their guys, but we really don’t know without being in the meetings. There is a rumor that Chris Ballard is eyeing Nagy after he fires Chuck Pagano in Indianapolis. That, of course, contradicts the rumor that he loves Dave Toub for the job.

6. Mike McCarthy, HC Green Bay

The season is slipping away from the Packers and McCarthy has one year left on his deal. There are rumors that Ted Thompson is going to retire soon so, it’s entirely possible that McCarthy is let go. There are some who think McCarthy is only employed because of Aaron Rodgers, but Rodgers is only a star because McCarthy retooled his mechanics after a rocky first couple of seasons. McCarthy is a good coach and a bright offensive mind. He had top-15 offenses in New Orleans with Jeff Blake and Aaron Brooks. He had success with Matt Flynn in Green Bay and he brought Brett Favre back from the dead. It’s entirely possible that they stink right now because Hundley is terrible. A bonus is that Pace knows McCarthy. The two worked in the same organization for four years. It would be interesting to see McCarthy work with Trubisky and an aggressive GM.

7. Vic Fangio, DC. Chicago

There’s no question Fangio has something with this Bears defense and the only way to keep it going might be to make him the head coach. I just don’t see Fangio as having the personality and communication skills to be a head coach. The way he publicly questioned Kyle Fuller’s desire last year was bullshit. Whenever you hire a defensive guy, you have to hire a great offensive mind. The most easily connected coordinator candidate to him is Greg Roman. Not exciting, but at least he’s experienced.

8. Matt LaFleur, OC, LA Rams

I suppose LaFleur is a bit like Nagy and Reich in that he’s the offensive coordinator for a team with an offensive head coach. I found it telling that both Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan wanted to hire LaFleur. The 38-year-old had a couple of other interesting stops as the offensive coordinator for Ashland and quarterbacks coach for Notre Dame in 2014 — a year in which Everett Golson threw for 29 touchdowns. Like with Nagy and Reich, we need to find out exactly what he knows and if he can lead a room.

9. Darrell Bevell, OC, Seattle

With no offensive line, broken down running backs and no elite receiver, the Seahawks have one of the 10 best offenses in the league. Much of the credit should go to Russell Wilson, of course, but we’ve seen Wilson develop into one of the very best quarterbacks in the league with Bevell being the only guy pushing the buttons. What I also like about Bevell is the fact that he values the running game, coordinating six top-five rushing offenses 12 years.

10. Scott Linehan, OC, Dallas

Daunte Culpepper. Matthew Stafford. Tony Romo. Dak Prescott. Those are the quarterbacks who have had the best years of their careers with Linehan calling the plays. He started with three of those guys as rookies. If you want to talk about coaches who have had success with young QBs, he’s been as good as anyone. He’s on his way to having his seventh top-10 scoring offense and eighth top-10 offense in terms of yardage in 15 years as a play-caller. He flamed out in St. Louis largely because Marc Bulger broke at the same time. That said, there was reportedly a little bit of a Trestman-factor with him as some questioned if he was willing to stand up to star players. Even if that’s true, it was a decade ago so I really don’t know what to make of that.

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  • EnderWiggin

    6) McCarthy – If McCarthy is our coach next year, I’m holding Andrew responsible…
    7) Fangio – I like how Fangio called out guys last year. May not be the best coming from a head coach, but I’m OK with it.

    • SC Dave

      7) It seems to have worked, at least for a season. Whether Fuller is pissed enough to leave is interesting, but I think I’ve said before that were it me, it would be time to look in the mirror, swallow a little pride, and stick with what seems to be morphing into a multi-year Top 3 defense. One in which he has suddenly become a very important piece.

      • CanadaBear

        BB and I usually agree on most things Bears but not on this one. I didn’t think it was that big of a deal when Fangio questioned his desire (in a roundabout way). A lot of people need a kick in the pants once in a while. We’ll find out after the season. If they can’t agree on a new contract I could see the Beloved franchising Fuller next year.

        • SC Dave

          That was an interesting point by Jahns, and an angle I had not considered.

          • Bear Instincts

            Is there anyone else on the team that we want to keep who is worth of the franchise tag?

          • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

            POD and Barth.

          • SC Dave

            Don’t know. I’m not sure who will be free agents next season. If we had that list, we could make our guesses.

    • AlbertInTucson

      McCarthy? That one is COMPLETELY out of left field.

      • BearDown100393

        Drugs.

  • SC Dave

    Andrew, thank you for a factual assessment of John Fox. The repetitive “fire Fox” drivel around here has become pretty tiring (bets on the two certain to troll this post?).

    As I’ve said numerous times, I’m too optimistic (I mean *how the hell else* would I be a 50+ year Bears fan?) but I really could see this team winning 9 or even 10 games.

    Philly will be hard, as will playing in Minneapolis. But we beat the Steelers and the Panthers are not exactly a shitty team.

    • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

      Damn Dave, just taking all the fun out of trolling a post by calling it out.

      • Bear Instincts

        This

      • Scharfinator

        Preemptive strike! HI-YAH

    • BearDown100393

      Hobo checked out.

    • AlbertInTucson

      “I mean *how the hell else* would I be a 50+ year Bears fan?”

      Masochism?

      I always greet my fellow Bear fans at the bar with “Greetings, fellow sufferers!”

  • Bear Instincts

    Why is Harbaugh no on the list?

    • SC Dave

      Andrew wrote this for you, perhaps?

      “It seems like the majority of the fan base still isn’t happy. They don’t just want to win, they want to look good doing it. But that wouldn’t matter no matter who the coach is. Hell, a large percentage of those people want Jim Harbaugh, the master of the ugly wins, as the coach.”

    • Andrew Dannehy

      Availability.

      • SC Dave

        I was going to put that in my response, but I saw another coming in and suspected it might be you. I suspect Instincts might not like ugly wins from Harbaugh either.

        *I* will take them any way we can get ’em.

        • Bear Instincts

          I don’t care about ugly wins Dave. I will take them so long as MT10 is maturing during those ugly wins. He is the future. For a long time I was all about defense and the run game. I’m not saying we should be like the Packers and depend on just one player but losing to them year after year after year and the hope I felt watching MT10 in preseason has shown me the value of the QB. I’m not abandoning the run game and defense. I’m simply making the offense and the QB who leads that Offense just as important as the defense and run game.

          • SC Dave

            Fair enough. It’s just hard after 50+ years being too optimistic about any QB on the Bears.

      • SC Dave

        What was that Lovie response to winning ugly? “I think all wins are beautiful”, or some such?

    • BearDown100393

      Because he has a better gig in Michigan.

  • leftcoastdave

    The knob polishing continues:

    Jeff: “He’s missed some open guys and had trouble with defenses – which they’ve all admitted is as much a coaching issue.”

    • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

      Jeez, get it right. it’s knob slobbering, not polishing.

      • leftcoastdave

        No, this one was more deliberative, but not sure I want to dwell upon his technique.

  • Cockney Kirk

    Ha

    Pack are suing Unicorn for his bonus. He failed to disclose an injury he now needs surgery for. I think he may be done

    • BearDown100393

      Let the two mean unloved dogs fight it out to the death.

  • evantonio

    Dave Toub for HC!

    • SC Dave

      Gotta admire your persistence, evan.

      • evantonio

        i know Mr. Phillips is reading these comment threads for inspiration.

      • Viva is a Toub guy too.

  • Cockney Kirk

    In the vein of scumbag sharks swim together

    False Face has hired David Bois the guy who Harvey was paying millions to so he could shut down NYT reporters from blowing open a story they knew about for 10 years – False Face hired Bois to sue the NFL

    Why?

    To stop the other owners from extending Roger’s contract or giving him his bonus

    False Face has butthurt over the Elliot debacle

  • willbest

    oh hell no

  • Alex

    Thanks for the article.

    Two interesting names going forward who might be in the running for assistant coach positions next season are Gary Kubiak (OC) and Chuck Pagano (DC).

    For the record I think Loggains has potential as inventive play caller which is of course contrary to what we’re seeing now but the reasoning for that has been explained (in my opinion correctly) in the article above.

    Hopefully Fangio doesn’t want to leave given he’s on the cusp of having a Top 5 defence. He goes back to the 49ers and he has to start again though they have some good young players on defence there as well. Hopefully he stays on as DC regardless of what happens to Fox but Pagano could be an interesting replacement.

    If Fox stays I don’t see him changing the coaching line up through choice. Loggains is calling the game the way it suits the Bears to play though hopefully with the WR group looking a little better this weekend the pass game may get a little more exciting.

    If wholesale changes were to be made then I’d be happy with the following:

    Fangio (HC), Kubiak (OC), Donatell or Pagano (DC)

    LaFleur (HC), Kubiak (OC), Pagano (DC) – a young HC surrounded by experience on both sides of the ball.

    • Alex

      I’ve not mentioned McCarthy because I don’t think he’d be let go but he’d be right up there in consideration if he was.

      • Irish Sweetness

        Not a Packer. My God. No.

    • Alex

      I don’t think I’d want Fangio as HC without someone like Kubiak (a very good offensive mind) looking after that side of the ball.

    • Scharfinator

      Why would Fangio go back to SF? He saw the management disaster that place is first hand already.

      • Alex

        He’d go back there because that management team has moved on. 49ers approached the Bears to try and hire him but were denied and he’d be working under Shanahan who is at the very least a very good OC. Those two combined could be dynamite. Maybe he likes the Bay!

        Alternatively he might actually want to stay with Fox and continue what they started. He’s now in command of a top 5 defence or at least one with that type of potential. He’s not getting any younger so he may not want to move again.

        Personally think the Bears are quite close to being extremely competitive in the NFL. If Pace can fix the WR issue and Trubisky proves he’s at least an Alex Smith type QB then next season the Bears are in business. Fangio may well want to stay for that reason.

        • Scharfinator

          Jed York isn’t going anywhere…

    • BearDown100393

      Pagano?

      No.

      • Alex

        He’s a defensive coach. He runs a 3-4 and he gets more than he should out of an absolutely garbage Colts roster. An experienced option and certainly one that would help a younger coach. I’d prefer to keep Fangio.

        • Irish Sweetness

          Is his defense aggressive?

      • Scharfinator

        Agree, Colts are a dumpster fire. Why would we want him?

        • BerwynBomber

          He might be decent as a DC.

          Plenty of crappy HCs went back to coordinator positions and thrived. Old Sauce, Gym Shorts, Wade Phillips, and countless others.

    • Kubiak’s O would jibe with our personnel.

      But I thought he had health problems.

      • Alex

        Apparently he’s still interested in being a coach but the stress and pressure of being a HC is a level that is beyond him now given his health. Who knows for sure. I’d like the experience he’d bring for a young QB and potentially a first time HC. As mentioned I still think Loggains has potential. Just needs some weapons.

  • Tortured Bear fan

    Read the name of Mike McCarthy in the same line as a “probable” HC of Bears, almost spill coffee on my desk.

    • Irish Sweetness

      Jimmy The Snake is on his way over there now.

      No tainted fudge-packers, please. I’m surprised there’s no interest in Chucky. Been there and done that. Not too old. Has expressed desire to work with Mitch. He’s the only guy I feel could get us there.

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  • Bear Instincts

    1.Harbaugh (HC), Kubiac (OC), Fangio (DC)

    1a Harbaugh (HC), Payton (OC), Fangio (DC)

    1b Harbaugh (HC), McCarthy (OC), Fangio (DC)

    1c Harbaugh (HC), Mcoy (OC), Fangio (DC)

    2.Toub (HC), Kubiak (OC), Fangio (DC)

  • willbest
    • “A similar blend of stories — pandas and idyllic Chinese landscapes next
      to heavy coverage of the mass shooting in Texas — has proliferated
      across China’s official Facebook channels in the lead-up to Mr. Trump’s
      visit to Beijing, which began on Wednesday.”

      Ahhh, no AR-15s for pandas .

      Merica!

  • BerwynBomber

    Good stuff, AD. Well-researched and well-reasoned. A few points.

    The counter-narrative of Fox and Loggains being the guys to develop Bisky is interesting. As you point out, both Hoyer and Barkley thrived under Fox leadership, or at the least maxed out whatever potential they had. This Sunday, IMV, is a huge game for Fox. He loses to the Rodgers-less, fraud-looking Cheese and it could be result in his pink slip at season’s end.

    The Fisher/McNair vs. Fisher/Goff entails a host of different variables. McNair was the more durable-looking, pro-ready talent. Fisher was younger and might have felt he had more room to go thru the growing pains with a young QB. Keenum was on LAR’s roster last year and might have been a better option than anything Fisher had at TEN. The passing game wasn’t as advanced during McNairs’ time. Etc., etc ….

    McCarthy’s best calling cards are a) that he got Favre to dramatically cut down his TOs (the couple years they worked together) and b) he runs a tight ship/professional team. Thompson obviously was bamboozled by Bennett but as soon as he went AWOL I suspect McCarthy said cut him. They do value character in GB it seems. The only guy that is mildly iffy is Matthews. But that seems completely confined to on-field, mildly dirty play.

    The bad of McCarthy? I’ve always felt his game instincts were awful, he has stuck with Capers way too long, and more and more Rodgers (like Peyton Manning) looks like his own OC. Think about it. Both Rodgers and Manning have had more pre-snap responsibilities (or greater effect on pre-snap) than any other QBs in the last twenty years. So doesn’t that take a huge bite out of the McCarthy as offensive guru rep? Just as every OC looked good because of Manning, I’m thinking the same in regards to Rodgers.

    Like the names of Morton, Nagy and Reich. As noted earlier … well-researched and reasoned.

    • BearDown100393

      Without Favre or Rodgers, Grimace is less than Jeff Fisher.

  • Bear Instincts

    With Bennett released by the Packers should we consider kicking the tires on him for the rest of the season?

    • SC Dave

      I wouldn’t, but the Bears don’t care much what I think.

      • willbest

        I doubt Pace is that interested in it. I get we don’t have a lot at that position, and he would be better than all the guys we have now there, but he won’t be significantly better and he comes with a lot of baggage.

    • BearDown100393

      Hasn’t Fuller suffered enough?

      • Bear Instincts

        He needs more motivation to play

      • Scharfinator

        Lol!

    • AlbertInTucson

      I think Bennett has just complete lost interest.

    • I’d rather bring back Bmarsh on one leg and 2 personalities.

  • willbest

    So my thing about this sort of thing is that Spacey’s ways were well known in the industry. Which is to say that a director of Scott’s stature would have known the type of crap he would be subjecting the rest of his cast and crew to.

    This ex post facto scrubbing of Spacey isn’t being done because Scott gives a shit, but because he (and the Studio) are deeply concerned the audience do.

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/christopher-plummer-replace-kevin-spacey-all-money-world-1056450

    Having said, that if they do manage to pull off a reshoot/reedit, and get the movie produced in time to make the Dec 22 release date, it will be a rather impressive managerial and technical feat.

    • evantonio
      • willbest

        You know you see/hear stuff like that a bit in TV shows. I used to think they were just one off random remarks where the humor was derived from the random name drop and something shocking. It turns out they are inside jokes/cries for help.

        • SC Dave

          Rather frightening.

        • That’s the thing though.

          Maybe the jokes are just based on rumors.

          Like, how many jokes are based on gerbil up Gere’s ass?

          Quite a lot.

        • evantonio

          yeah. i wonder how many others i’ve laughed at/missed over the years.

    • Scharfinator

      The more you hear the more you realize Hollywood is fucked.

      • CanadaBear

        I just kinda always assumed it was.

        • Scharfinator

          Me too, but I just thought it was a bunch of smug, narcissistic douchebags.

          Not child rapists.

          • CanadaBear

            With ya on that one. Although with all the money at stake in that industry I should have known they would do anything to keep this stuff in-house. I always assumed the women were treated terribly just didn’t think about the kids. Considering how many stage-struck parents there are, this shouldn’t be so shocking. Ugh.

          • Irish Sweetness

            Wait til it spreads to the higher echelons of Great Britain. The revelations of Jimmy Saville’s life pulled at the cloth of the establishment. Rumors are rife that he was protected by the police, procuring children for the power elite. He was a friend of the Queen’s and they would talk on the phone. The masonic network – or whatever you want to call them – and their activities …it’s the worst-kept secret in the world, isn’t it?

      • Hollywood has ALWAYS been like this, or worse.

        Just the world outside doesn’t hear the rumors and stories, though tbh, you hear so many that are so outrages that it’s hard to believe one story or the other.

        In the Godfather book they chopped off that horse’s head of the director because he also had a rep for boinking underage kids (and supposedly it was based on a true story).

        And that was during the “golden age” so this sorta stuff has been going on for a long time.

        Just now with TMZ and cells and 24hr news cycle, more stuff is coming out (kinda like with police corruption ).

  • BearDown100393

    Grimace on the Bears sideline.

    What drugs are you on?

    • Bender McLugh

      haha right? I just…could not…….

    • I felt like doing this to Andy after reading that.

  • BearDown100393

    It is quite simple.

    Pace must hire his own HC next season.

    Birdcage is not the answer for Mitch Trubisky and the offense. This is putrid. Beyond putrid.

    Hobo has to go. Keep Hobo? You keep Birdcage and then might as well put the Giraffe back out there.

    Keep Hobo and let go Birdcage? You end up with Tice 2.0 running the offense. Why? Because nobody decent would want to work with a lameduck HC. See Lovie Smith.

    Stop it with the repetitive history. Learn from it. Change the course. Do something right for once.

    Otherwise whatever Trubisky has for potential, will be wasted in typical Bears style.

    • SC Dave

      Speaking of repetitive, you could try a different topic now and then.

      • BearDown100393

        Nah, I’ll stick with my own boring honest thoughts while others booyah with heads in sands.

  • Cubsnlinux

    So Fox is choice #1 huh? This post Icouls have waited until Monday. If the Bears lose to Rodgers less and depleted Packers the pitchforks will be out in full force starting Sunday afternoon calling for the immediate dismissal of Fox. Bears record under Fox as Favorites isn’t any good so I don’t have high hopes but this I would say is a must win for Fox’s survival.

    • BerwynBomber

      My thoughts too. Sunday could potentially be the most damning Cheese loss in eons.

      Mind, I think Bears will prevail but it is not like we are sure bet fave against anyone. Except CLE and maybe SF (depending of JimmyG).

  • BerwynBomber
    • Cockney Kirk

      Likes to jack off in front of the ladies.

      http://variety.com/2017/biz/news/louis-ck-masterbation-sexual-misconduct-dave-becky-1202594776/

      Don’t get it… it’s like even he knows he’s too disgusting to touch, so this is as close as he can get to assault.

      • Bender McLugh

        10 years ago and he apologized to the women, but it seems there’s others that have yet to come forward with their stories too.

      • Don’t we sorta expect stand up comedians to be depraved, depressed and dank though?

        Imagine hanging out with Sam Kennison at a hotel.

    • willbest

      Why is luring women to your hotel room so you can masturbate in front of them a thing in hollywood?

      Harvey: Hey Louie.
      CK: whats up
      Harvey: Hey you ever get women up to your room and masturbate in front of them
      CK: What? Why?
      Harvey: They get all deer in headlights. Its totally erotic
      CK: Why not just pay a “stripper” to rub you off? Its less work and they pretend to be into it
      Harvey: nah, this is way better
      *CK tries*
      CK: son of a bitch, Harvey is right, we got to let everybody know how great this feels.

    • BearDown100393

      100 years from now, people will not caaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeeeeee about this. They will ponder why anyone from our time found CK funny though.

  • BerwynBomber

    Dickerson tweeting that Trevathan will be inactive Sunday because of a calf strain.

    • BearDown100393

      WTF?

      A strain?

      Fudge week. Suit up.

    • willbest

      Well shit.

    • Of course…

      Is Kwiat healthy?

      Ugh, please no more Anderson.

      • CanadaBear

        Yes. He played in the previous game (only a few snaps).

  • BerwynBomber

    Does anyone else think the coming Sunday is our single most important game since the ’13 finale?

    • Cockney Kirk

      When I was a kid, the Pack-Bears rivalry had a comfortable lifetime lead for the Bears, like 76-52 or something.

      Last game tied it.

      The Packers have been the better team for a quarter century. And in those 25 years there have been embarrassing and humiliating losses. Losses where Farve or Vadgers is out of the game by the 3rd quarter and the TV cuts to them laughing and making jokes you know are about Chicago and the team.

      Insofar as this game might be a statement game to shift back the tide – sure.

      The “family” for 3 generations have touted the lifetime lead over the Pack at their cocktail shindigs and banquet dining. For that to change, and it would change after this game – it would be a big big stinger to the legacy and probably old GSH would go full Walking Dead and shamble across the field just to kick George and Mikey in the groin.

      Actually I think last game gave the Pack the lead by one game, this would make it a 2 game lifetime lead.

      So if you wanted to open a new era – fuck, I’ve been waiting my entire adult life for it.

      I was 16 years old when there were Monsters on the Midway and it’s been a Cubs like drought since. So insofar as we could just WIN – and win in Lambeau – that would be a great day.

      • BerwynBomber

        Right. But I was thinking more that the predominant DBB take of the last few years — that the Cheese are average franchise being hauled around singlehandedly by Rodgers — is taking hold in the national media the last couple of weeks, especially after their MNF performance.

        It’s the cat’s away thing. If we can’t beat them Sunday, good lord …

        And as Cubslinux and I posited previously, the natives will be calling for Fox’s scalp by Sunday afternoon and/or it might result in his pink slip on Black Monday if we lose this one.

        It will be damning as hell.

        • Cockney Kirk

          You have $10k to blow.

          You are at the Vegas big board with your slip.

          Bears offer -3. Take it?

          • BerwynBomber

            Fuck it. Yeah, I’d take the Bears. No way we lose this one.

          • Cockney Kirk

            And yes the blog will be screaming for Fox’s head if we blow this.

          • After a bye, with some momentum, no Vadgers, at home?

            Better call in the swat team to get Fox out of there if he bungles it.

            If it’s 3-0 at halftime, he should be fired at half time.

          • willbest

            If you leave it to Waffle you were find yourself in a 7 game parlay, running double or nothing into MNF. I would need a lot of liquor to get that kind of courage.

          • BerwynBomber

            And I would be backing MIA, I’m sure.

          • Irish Sweetness

            Nope. -3?? If Fox does what he does, and we don’t have many takeaways, it might be a close-run thing. Danny’s out? FG to win it.

        • SC Dave

          Depends on what happens. If we open the playbook as everyone demands, and MT goes Cutler v GB on us, we could easily lose.

      • We did win at Lambeau to ruin NeedleDick Day!

        That was pretty awesome

        (Though I still suspect Favre got schadenfreud chub from seeing Vadgers lose on his night)

        Fox cannot lose this game.

        I mean, he can, and it wouldn’t surprise anyone, but if he does, that’ll be lawyer shoving Georgy coming to god moment, and it won’t be pretty for Fox.

        Maybe this time away for Vadgers will make him realize just how SHITTY the Puke are without him, and how mortal he might be, and begin eyeing other teams.

        Other than that. Bear Down?

      • Irish Sweetness

        Correction, Sir. Yes. The Packers now lead the series 95-94-6.

        The Bears chose to play Glennon … we lose … the Packers go ahead for the first time in history … and we start Mitchell the following week.

    • willbest

      What does it determine?

      If we lose does it guarantee Fox gets fired? If we win does it guarantee he stays? If Mitch doesn’t look the part does that mean we go back to the drawing board at QB?

      I mean getting the all time series tied up and exploiting a weakness is pretty important, and as a fan, there are a lot of things I want to see, but I don’t think the game has any far reaching consequences.

      Perhaps, I just find it difficult for this Bears team to F it up. Playing a bad defense and a team without a QB seems like it was tailor made for Foxball.

      • BerwynBomber

        Fox’s potential job status for one. It could be an embarrassing/damning as hell loss.

        • Bear Instincts

          After going over Andres points and listening to the podcast that is upcoming I’m starting to believe that Fox will be back. It seems Pace likes him and as Andrew points out:

          1.The offense the Bears are currently running isn’t the only offense they
          know how to run. They’re running the offense they
          need to run

          2.The Bears need better players before we can talk about their offense being good.

          Pace is a level headed guy. Looking back at his previous decisions on players leads me to believe that Fox is safe for next year and if he performs in 18 he just might get an extension.

          • BerwynBomber

            Losing to Aaron Rodgers can almost ALWAYS be rationalized.

            Losing to Brett freaking Hundley? On our home turf?

            I could see the McCaskeys overriding Pace, if they felt strongly enough about it.

          • Bear Instincts

            Overriding Pace is irrational. The very thing they said they were not going to do any more. If you override Pace you strip him of his sack and he gets no respect for the rest of his time as a GM.

            The only way ownership calls for the head of Fox on a platter is if it is an embarrassing loss.

          • BerwynBomber

            And again, if we lose to this Cheese team with Brett Hundley at the helm that will count as any embarrassing loss.

    • BearDown100393

      Well the Bears are obviously going to win so it is moot…..

    • Irish Sweetness

      Nope – why would it be? Looking at the playoff picture, there’s a bunch of teams in the NFC on 6-2, one 7-1.

      What is rare is that we’re expected to beat the Packers, and beating them without Rodgers is a hollow victory in itself.

      But it’s just another Sunday.

      • BerwynBomber

        See below.

        P.S. You don’t know the city.

    • madscout12

      If you can’t beat these fools with Rodgers down, we are waiting 2+ years to do it. We had them at home last year and we let it get away. Not this time.

      If Fox loses this one, I’ll be one calling for his head. Beat inferior talent when you get it, and the Pack this week are inferior.

  • Cockney Kirk
  • BuddhaJoe

    Maybe they’ll get lucky and Harbaugh will get shitcanned by Baltimore if they finish poorly. Seems unlikely but probably more likely than getting Jim out of Michigan.

  • AlbertInTucson

    USA Today 11/09. Bears -6.

    Per ESPN, this is the first time in NINE years the Bears have been favored over the Packers

  • I think I wrote this article in the last thread!

    I mostly agree with Dannehy Auto Parts.

    It’s hard to distinguish the Padawan from the Master.

    The thing with hot-shot OCs is you never know if they’re just going along for the ride, or if they’re actually absorbing the genius and helping out. So the concerns with Nagy, Riech, Lafeur are justified.

    Then again, critics once said the same thing about Billichick, Payton, Coughlin coming from the Parcell’s tree

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/e/ee/Coaching_Trees.GIF

    Morton I mentioned as a dark horse, and Shurmur is in the same line (though I dispute Andy’s claim that the Vikes have less talent on O).

    Linehan I was close to including because of how Daq progressed and how they use some read but stick to the run with some bombs. But I’d have to see a lil more there.

    IF Fangio sticks, Payton is an option. But if Payton has to choose his own DC, fuck that.

    This year is an aberration for their D. For most of his tenure their D has been dog shit. This guy once thought tarded Ryan was a good DC.

    I wished we dumped Fox last yr so we Fangio can serve as interim to see how he manages a team. But won’t get that chance anymore.

    Fangio is like that hot 35 yr old chick who’s single.

    By all accounts, his looks good, but team after team don’t even CONSIDER him an HC. Even the dumpster fire 9ers, his own team, didn’t even give him a courtesy interview for HC.

    At some point gotta wonder: wtf is wrong with him?

    Shades of Tresty?

    [though that Fuller thing last yr may give us a clue)

    Bevell’s is interesting, but how responsible is he for that Oline?

    Seems like 3 yrs straight they’ve been getting Wilson killed. Don’t need that.

    McCarthy? He’s like the bizarro Fox. Can coach up a QB but can’t do anything else. Pass.

    I also HIGHLY disagree with Andy’s contention that the Goff and the Rams would’ve improved this yr if Fisher had stayed.

    NOT. ONCE. CHANCE.

    The Ram’s O last yr wasn’t just bad, it was HORRIBLE. In fact, some argue it was the worst O in at least 5 yrs.

    The stats bear it out, and the eyetest was WORSE.

    They were a running joke in L.A.

    To go from THAT to a top #3 O in ONE offseason and argue that coaching had little to do with it is laughable. (and it wasn’t just Goff who improved. Check out the YPC for Gurley)

    Coaching matters in football more than in any other sport.

    Jordan, Jeter, Gresky…those guys are great no matter what.

    But in football, great coaching can turn a good player into a HOFer.

    And that’s what we need . GREAT coaching, not Albino Lovie.

    Fox got us back to respectability while building a D. Mission accomplished.

    Now we gotta do what Elway did and dump Fox for a hungrier, smarter HC to reach that SB.

    • CanadaBear

      I still think Fangio is a little too rough around the edges to the point where GM’s and owners are uncomfortable going all in. Either because he will tell the truth a little too much or say something to embarrass the org. Other than that, have no idea. Although SF was so fucked at that time I wouldn’t hold that against Fangio. By all accounts the guy they hired (Tomsula) was amenable to whatever mgmt wanted.

      • Yeah, but the 9ers weren’t the only team (at least give a courtesy reach around!).

        You may be right. Maybe he doesn’t have the politically savvy or charm owners want in HCs. Then again, Billichick is practically autistic.

        If a straight shooter can work, it’s in Chicago.

        But I think Da Coach has permanently traumatized the McCaskeys. They’ve been hiring cookie-cutter HCs since Ditka.

        • CanadaBear

          Other than Wanny and Ditka almost all of the other HC’s would fall into the “nice guy” category.

          • Yeah I was thinking about Wanny, but to me he was more cooky than crazy lol

          • CanadaBear

            Wanny was horrible as a HC and a decent person when he was with the Beloved. Having people spy on the players and lying to them is beyond bad juju.

          • SC Dave

            Gibron?

          • CanadaBear

            The players loved him. A lovable oaf.

    • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

      TLDR;

    • Also, Andy, no love for Jim Bob Cooter?

      I have my reservations, but curious about yours.

  • CanadaBear

    Pats claim the Black Uni.

    • BerwynBomber

      Uni and Shea … BFFs

  • AlbertInTucson

    Zeke’s suspension is back on.

    Another appeal pending.

  • If anyone is curious about Zach’s inj from a medical perspective, check this podcast out.

    http://www.espn.com/espnradio/play?id=21353942

    It’s basically the worst nightmare scenario from a football player aspect. I remember my biggest fear when I played was my knee going the wrong way. Ugh.

    Anyhow, it’s not OVERLY detailed and gruesome, mercifully.

    But good listen if you’re curious.

    Also, shot out to the Bears medical staff (and Saints).

    According to the podcast, that type of inj has to be correctly assessed in the first 6 hrs, or the person may lose his leg.

  • Florio (a former lawyer) trying pretty hard to inspire a young ambitious lawyer to sue Irsay for Fraud:

    “In some contexts, B.S. is simply that. In other contexts, B.S. has another name.

    Fraud.”

    “Here’s what owner Jim Irsay said on Twitter, back in January: “Andrew recovering from successful outpatient surgery to fix right shoulder injury that had lingered since 2015. Will be ready for season!”

    ” Luck himself at one point will get an invitation to the party, and he’ll have to answer questions about a text that Dakich claims Luck sentto someone who showed it to a media member Dakich knows.

    The text said, per Dakich, “I’m nowhere near ready. They’re putting me out here to sell tickets.”

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2017/11/09/colts-risk-a-fraud-lawsuit-from-season-ticket-holders/

    Stay tuned…as the NFL turns…

    • willbest

      Fraud is a tough nut to crack.

      • AlbertInTucson

        SMH.

        IMO, the preponderance of evidence here says “Stupid” not “Fraud”.

        Speaking of “Nuts to Crack”, Jim Irsay.

        • willbest

          I honestly doubt it would survive a motion to dismiss, but maybe Isray really is that much of a jagoff that he would have the doctors telling him 50/50 and he would say another thing to make sure people keep their season tickets.

  • “Ben McAdoo. Marc Trestman. Never hire a head coach with stupid hair.” – Jeff

    Word.

    • willbest

      That must be the same thing as not trusting a guy with 2 first names

  • BerwynBomber

    Bears have not been favored in a game in almost 365 days, specifically 11/13/16 when this happened:

    #condor

    • Cutler was also coming off arguably his best performance in Bears uni against the Vike the week b4.

      #CantDoIt

    • Irish Sweetness

      Let’s balance that:

      • BerwynBomber

        Why?

  • This is what I figured AP would be more like.

    Bottled up behind that bad Oline.

  • So they call that ticky tack PI but let Gresham just grab the fuck out of the defender.

    Yeah, keep on trucking NFL.

  • Wow. Stanton bad.

    Over threw by about 10 yds. Bailed out by penalty.

  • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

    I am not liking this camera angle.

  • Setting up an aggressive D with the screen.

    Must be nice.

  • SC Dave

    The NFL is determined to end the return game entirely.

    • Is there a return that does NOT draw a flag?

      • willbest

        Ones that end in fair catches usually don’t have flags.

  • EnderWiggin

    Kind of a late take down on that one.

  • Cockney Kirk

    TNF:

    When your 8 year old gets to pick the Madden uniform colors.

  • SC Dave
  • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

    so that was not a catch??? NFL SUCKS!!!!

    • EnderWiggin

      I was thinking ot was a catch but not a fumble /oldschool

      • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

        it was a catch and a fumble… /oldschool

        • EnderWiggin

          I always thought it was “ground can’t cause a fumble” not “ground can’t cause a fumble unless you take three steps and don’t get touched first”. /shrug. Incomplete is weird though.

          • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

            what Al said above

          • AlbertInTucson

            “The ground can’t cause a fumble” has long been a widely held misconception.

          • willbest

            Its more accurately stated “A defender cannot use the ground to cause a fumble”

        • AlbertInTucson

          BTW, the ground could ALWAYS cause a fumble if you weren’t touched. That concept has never changed.

          • EnderWiggin

            crazy.

    • AlbertInTucson

      The parsing of what is a catch anymore is beyond ridiculous.

    • BerwynBomber

      Yeah, that was horrendous. Three full steps after the catch and he STILL has to maintain possession through contact with the ground?

      C’mon …

  • AlbertInTucson

    SMH. Cardinals VERY fortunate on that BS.

  • SC Dave

    From some article (http://www.dailyherald.com/sports/20171109/howard-mcphee-honor-injured-bear-miller-at-practice)
    =============
    Teammates Jordan Howard and Pernell McPhee paid tribute to Miller by wearing his No. 86 jersey at Thursday’s practice.

    “Just (to) support him, let him know and let the team know we still got him, and we’re still gonna fight
    for him,” McPhee said. “At the end of the day, we can put the season onthe line just for him.

    “It was Jordan’s idea, just to keep the memory and the thought that we have a soldier that went down,
    and we got to have his back no matter what. We’re praying for him every night, as a team, as a unit, and we just want to play for him.”

  • AlbertInTucson

    Nelson could play for the Bears.

  • Irish Sweetness

    From the mother-site:

    Inman has honed that football IQ by regularly arriving at work before
    the sun arises, a routine he began to follow in his second season with
    the Chargers in 2015.

    “The player who taught me how to be a student of the game was [safety] Eric Weddle,” Inman said. “Eric Weddle challenged me to come in and work out with him at 5:30 one day. I got there at six. He looked at me and shook his head and said, ‘You still want to be average.

    “So I began to create that work ethic from him, and he’s taught me a whole lot—you get in, you get your work done, you study your film, and your body’s prepared for the day. That’s one thing that I learned a couple years ago.”

    That type of preparation has put Inman in position to help bolster a Bears passing offense that ranks dead last in the NFL, averaging just 157.5 yards per game.

    • BerwynBomber

      Looking forward to seeing him Sunday.

    • Love his story, his tape his game. Pro WR through and through.

      I posted this on the day we attained him, but worth reposting:

      “As a quarterback and as a coach, if you want one quality for a player, you want them to have dependability,” Rivers said. “Dontrelle is a good player. He makes plays, runs good routes (and) does those things, (but) the main thing, is he is dependable. You can count on him to run the right route, to play any position (and) to do his job every day. That is what we thought we were getting when we got him from Canada. (Former Offensive Coordinator) Frank (Reich) had talked to the coach he played for in Canada and he said, ‘If I had 41, or however big their roster is, Dontrelles, I would have a heck of a team…

      Inman credits his dependability on three simple factors he stresses when it comes to his craft.

      “Win at the line of scrimmage, separate at the top and make the tough catches,” he said. “Those are the three things as a wide receiver (where) you could be mediocre and you can still play in this league. Those three things are key to receiving. Keep it simple. Win at the line of scrimmage, win at the top and make a tough catch.”

      http://www.chargers.com/news/2016/11/27/dontrelle-inman-mr-dependability-philip-rivers

  • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

    If Jerry Jones truly does not want Goodell to get an extension, all he should do is put together a compilation of blown reviewed calls by NFL refs to show the other owners. UNACCEPTABLE!

    • SC Dave

      The presumption being that other owners care. I doubt they do.

      • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

        follow it up with interviews with fans that are ready to quit watching because it is absolutely absurd that the NFL can’t figure out what a catch is.

        • I would love Jones to go full-Davis.

          Just do it, Jones!

          (NFL got the last laugh though – see, Tuck Rule)

      • AlbertInTucson

        I suspect more owners dislike Jerra than like him.

        He’s tried to position himself as the Senior Statement among the owners and I DON’t think the other owners appreciated his presumption.

    • AlbertInTucson

      The 8 man committee in charge of Goodell’s extension has OK’d it.

      If Jerra has any allies among the other owners, they haven’t come forward.

      • AlbertInTucson

        Jerra’s not ON that committee but WAS allowed to sit in.

  • BerwynBomber

    Btw, Arians the gambler might have cost his team three points. Pooch a punt there and arguably SEA doesn’t have enough time or TOs to get in FG range. But he decided to go for it on fourth and eight.

    • That’s why I wouldn’t want him as HC.

      He’s TOO aggressive.

      Petey is sorta the same, but he has better talent which bails him out on a lot of DUMB calls.

      • BerwynBomber

        Right. Pulling that stuff with Wilson is one thing; pulling it with Drew Stanton is another.

  • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

    I am going to send my resume to the NFL for a booth review position. I think I may be over qualified.
    Qualifications:
    1. I can see.
    2. I have watched football for 30 years.
    3. despite what some of you may say, I am not an idiot.

    • willbest

      You forgot to list that you know what the word “incontrovertible” means. Or did you think that would automatically disqualify you for consideration?

      • “Modestly” Huge Bears Penis

        I figured that falls in line with not being an idiot.

  • There are just some physical beasts on that field.

    AP, Chancellor, Wagner, Fitz, Gresham…

    And that’s not even counting dudes like Sherman, Peterson…

    Uber-testosterone when these teams face off

    • BerwynBomber

      From what I’ve been reading/hearing Chancellor’s game has been in decline the last couple of years.

  • MVP for the Cards: yellow flag

    I think Yellow Flag has converted more first downs for the Cards than their actual players.

    • AlbertInTucson

      4 on their first TD drive.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Chin music for Wilson.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Pretty quick assessment.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Cardinals spared a bad challenge.

    • Don’t they lose a TO if they challenge an UN-challengable play?
      I thought that was the rule to prevent slowing down the game with unnecessary challenges.

      • AlbertInTucson

        That was my first thought, too.

  • AlbertInTucson

    JJ Nelson strikes again.

  • Stanton looks like he’s going to die tonight.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Ooooh.

    Miley Cyrus on the Tonight Show.

    THERE is a clear invitation NOT to watch!

  • AlbertInTucson

    12 penalties on Seattle so far.

  • AlbertInTucson

    That should been picked.

    But I will take the 2nd Jimmy Graham TD for FF.

    • BerwynBomber

      Contestable ball. 1-on-1 coverage. You have Jimmy Graham you take that chance.

      Not a bad decision or pass.

  • AlbertInTucson

    This game smells like it is over.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Yeah, nice play, Karlos, but you look like a bozo celebrating that stop trailing by a dozen.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Friendly fire issue for the Seahawks.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Cardinal offense looking more and more inept.

  • AlbertInTucson

    I benched Fitz tonight.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Larry Fitzgerald.

    Oh, to have a Larry Fitzgerald for Trubisky to throw to.

  • AlbertInTucson

    Good night, folks.

    Drive home safely.

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