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Pittsburgh Steelers at Chicago Bears Game Preview

| September 21st, 2017

Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears. But that hourglass has been flipped.

When Trubisky?

There are three possibilities, as I see it, for the Mitch Trubisky era to begin in Chicago.

Possibility #1: Monday night, October 9th – Vikings at home

Under this scenario, Mike Glennon eats the hardest four-game stretch of the Bears schedule (and subsequent 0-4 record). The Bears would then have 11 days to prepare Trubisky for the Vikings and they’d be able to create an event atmosphere at Soldier Field that night.

Possibility #2: Sunday, November 12th – Packers at home

Under this scenario, Mike Glennon gets the entire first half of the Bears schedule. This would certainly require him playing better than he has through two games. Then Trubisky gets the bye week to prepare for a debut against the team’s oldest rival at Soldier Field. Would the fans get pumped up enough by his first start to fill the building? I think they might.

Possibility #3: Mid-game

I texted both of my league connections, both high-ranking personnel guys with other franchises, and asked how they felt about bringing in a rookie quarterback in the middle of the game. The two responses were “wouldn’t do it” and “fine with it”.

Here’s what I’ll say about the idea. I would not bring Trubisky into a blowout. You don’t want him on the field down three scores, having to drop back every play. But if the Bears are down 13-10 Sunday to Pittsburgh at the half and Glennon has looked like Glennon, I wouldn’t hesitate for a moment to bring Trubisky into the game.

Notes on the Pittsburgh Steelers

  • QBs faced through three weeks of the season: DeShone Kizer, Case Keenum, Mike Glennon. By comparison the Bears will have faced Matt Ryan, Jameis Winston, Ben Roethlisberger. The Steelers will more than likely start one of the most hollow 3-0’s in NFL history.
  • A player I knew nothing about who absolutely jumps off the screen is LB Anthony Chickillo. The former Hurricane is in his third season and has been all over the field through two games. How do the Steelers always manage to produce these f’n linebackers? Chickillo is also a terrific pass rusher and the Bears better be wary of his location at all times Sunday.
  • T.J. Watt has been something of revelation but exited the Vikings game with a groin injury the organization doesn’t believe to be serious. If Watt doesn’t play, it’s a huge bonus for the Bears. But will that mean James Harrison can actually get on the field for the Steelers this season?

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Positive Jahns, Around the League Thoughts & More!

| September 19th, 2017

Jahns Responds to Nightmare Loss

Here are three POSITIVE points Adam made in the Sun-Times:

4. The Bears missed linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski (four tackles on Bucs’ first drive). Christian Jones missed Jacquizz Rodgers in the backfield on his one-yard touchdown run.

Kwik looked terrific when this game began. He was firing at the line of scrimmage. And then, injury. Because it’s totally normal for a starter and his backup to both tear their pec muscles in consecutive weeks. Remarkable how many rosters are already being decimated just two weeks into the season.

8. Want a positive? Bears rookie safety Eddie Jackson was strong in run support. He’s made a concerted effort to improve his tackling.

9. One more positive? Bears nickel back Bryce Callahan rebounded from his tough Week 1 and nearly had two interceptions. He was active and very close to big plays.

Jackson, Callahan and Kyle Fuller are all playing at a solid level and I expect all three to improve as the season progresses.


5 Around the League Thoughts

Literally found my eyes wandering from the Bears game during the second half Sunday. So I saw quite a bit of the league.

(1) Dak Prescott is really a poor thrower of the football. I think he has enough intangibles to have a successful career in the league but that arm is never beating anyone from the pocket.

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The Story is Glennon Until He’s Gone

| September 18th, 2017

John Fox said it.

I heard him.

He said it.

Sunday’s loss was not on Mike Glennon. Nope, Glennon’s constant throwing behind receivers was not the problem. Glennon blowing off an open Adam Shaheen to throw the ball to a linebacker was certainly not the problem. Glennon fumbling the football because he has the least amount of pocket awareness in the history of professional football was clearly not the problem. Glennon’s awful pick-six, predicted seconds before it happened from a New York City bar stool, was definitively not the problem.

Sure, the Bears made a ton of mistakes yesterday and were more than likely not winning even if they received adequate quarterback play. But they didn’t receive adequate quarterback play. They received the type of quarterback play anybody who has studied the tape of Mike Glennon’s career would expect. This performance was not surprising. It wasn’t abnormal. It is exactly who Glennon has always been.

And when a reporter dared to ask John Fox if Mitch Trubisky will be starting next week against Pittsburgh, Fox answered with a simple “No”.

Next week, and every week Glennon starts, the Bears will lose. Not because they don’t have good enough players to compete but because the organization has chosen to do so. The Bears have selected failure.  People wonder why this space has been obsessed with Glennon since the start of training camp? Yesterday you saw why. He renders the team non-competitive.

And worse, he renders the games unwatchable. And I really, really like watching Bears football. At least I did until September 2017.

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DBB Weekend Show Featuring Former Bears Safety Cam Worrell [AUDIO]

| September 15th, 2017

On the Weekend Show:

  • Jeff scares himself by looking deeply at the first 8 games of the schedule and wonders if the Bears will be favored in any of them.
  • Cam Worrell talks about the mentality of turnovers and talks passionately about Brian Urlacher, Hall of Fame candidate. (“Lach” is a gracious paintball player but an animal on the field.)
  • Reverend Dave sets the new record for Most Mailed-in Sermon.
  • MUSIC FROM THE GREAT CYRILLE AIMEE!

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340 Comments

Bears at Bucs Game Preview

| September 14th, 2017

Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears. (But a man can only take so much.)

Tampa Bay in 2016

Aside from their thumping of the Bears, on a day when Jay Cutler couldn’t stop turning the ball over, the Tampa offense was mediocre or worse for the duration of the 2016 season. Their rankings:

  • Yards per game: 18th
  • Passing yards per game: 16th
  • Rushing yards per game: 24th
  • Points per game: T-18th

The fact that a team with these stats won more games than they lost is impressive. But the Bucs made two significant additions to their offense this off-season: DeSean Jackson and O.J. Howard. Always. Be. Adding. Weapons.

On Jerrell Freeman’s Injury

Bears had 22 projected starters in July. 11 on offense and 11 on defense. Kyle Long, Prince Amukamara, Cam Meredith, Kevin White, Jerrell Freeman won’t be out there Sunday. Pernell McPhee will be limited. That’s 27% of their starting lineup not out there. And they’ve played one game.

Three Reasons the Bears Win

  • One-dimensional Bucs. After seeing the Bears front suffocate the Falcons rush game, with Freeman, it’s hard to imagine many teams having significant success running the football into Goldman, Hicks & co. That means this game will fall squarely on Jameis Winston and the passing attack. Can they carry the day in their first start and avoid turning it over? Hard to see it.
  • Tarik Cohen. Make no mistake about it, Bucs DC Mike Smith is spending way more time than he expected this week on The Human Joystick. Outside of Chicago, Cohen’s dynamic performance in Week One shook the football world, with Cohen establishing himself as the team’s most explosive weapon. If goal 1 of opposing defenses will be stopping the Bears run, goal 1A will be stopping Cohen. Not sure the Bucs have the personnel to do it.
  • Back to the Ground. Bucs allowed 4.4 yards per carry on the ground last season and over 117 yards per game. Bears will be handing the ball off and handing it off a lot this Sunday. Why? Because they watched the tape of their quarterback from last weekend.

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Needs, Comparisons, Tweets & Other Things

| September 12th, 2017

2018 Needs Rankings

Need 1. Wide Receiver

Outside of a few teams desperate for a quarterback, the Bears may have a bigger need at WR than any team’s need at any position. In the last few weeks they have lost their number one and number two options while already heading into 2017 with one of the weakest receiving tandems in the game. It would be great to know if the quarterback of the future is capable of elevating lesser receiving talents before the Bears invest big money/high pick in the position, wouldn’t it?

Need 2. Pass Rusher

Bears have Leonard Floyd. They need another one.

Need 3. Smooth Tackling Safety

Bears need a bopper at the third level. They need a sure-thing tackling machine. Quintin Demps Sunday missed two pivotal tackles, one in the backfield and one down field on the big Hooper touchdown. Make those tackles, change the score.

Hoge on the Glennon/Barkley Comparison

This is as good a passage as I’ve read from a beat this season:

Last November against the Titans, Matt Barkley was the quarterback making his first start for the Chicago Bears. He wasn’t great early, but surprised everyone in the fourth quarter as offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains aired it out in a comeback attempt. Operating with replacement-level receivers, Barkley got the Bears down to the Titans’ 7-yard-line with 47 seconds left in the game. On first down, Bellamy dropped a touchdown. On second and third down, Barkley failed to connect with his intended targets. And on fourth down, Deonte Thompson failed to haul in a low, but catchable pass in the end zone. The Bears lost.

Sunday against the Falcons, Mike Glennon was the quarterback making his first start for the Chicago Bears. He wasn’t great early, but surprised everyone in the fourth quarter as Loggains aired it out in a comeback attempt. Operating with replacement-level receivers, Glennon got the Bears down to the Falcons’ 5-yard-line with 21 seconds left in the game. On first down, Bellamy was held slightly coming out of his break and couldn’t secure a catchable pass in the end zone. On second down, running back Jordan Howard dropped Glennon’s pass near the goal line. On third down, Glennon failed to connect with tight end Zach Miller and on fourth down, Glennon was sacked. The Bears lost.

Not much was different Sunday at Soldier Field. Except that this time the Bears might have had their own Marcus Mariota standing on their sideline in uniform.

Was Mike Glennon the reason why the Bears lost to the Falcons? No. But Trubisky could have been the reason why they beat the Falcons. We’ll never know.

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Bears Lose Home Opener, What’s Next? (Rapid Fire!)

| September 11th, 2017

Special thanks to Data for his post-game report yesterday. We’ll be trying to provide post-game content throughout the season.

  • Mike Glennon did everything Mike Glennon can do yesterday. And the Bears had a chance to win. Remind you of anything? It’s exactly what we were saying every week during Hoyer/Barkley last season. But when your passer is this limited, the rest of the team needs to be absolutely perfect. And the Bears are not good enough to be that.
  • If this is all the Bears are going to ask Glennon to do, not playing Trubisky makes even less sense. Trubisky can do everything Glennon did yesterday. Hell, Chad Hutchinson can do everything Glennon did yesterday. But Trubisky can extend plays with his elusiveness and extend drives with his legs. The Bears shouldn’t be playing Trubisky to develop their future. They should be playing him because he’d help them win now.
  • Didn’t foresee the Bears having no answer for Austin Hooper.
  • Not surprised at all by Tarik Cohen. The Human Joystick has been turning heads since he showed up for his first Bears practice and I’d imagine he’ll be lighting up fantasy waiver wires today. (I haven’t played fantasy football in 17 years but I suggested Cohen to a DFS player who won five grand yesterday.) Cohen is the Bears best offensive weapon.
  • Akiem Hicks is their best defensive weapon. Maybe giving guys millions of dollars the day before the opener should become a trend. That was a dominant performance.

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