After the second week of the NFL season, the Bears are even. They won 30-12. They lost 30-13. One at home. One on the road. A push if you ask me. And not a bad two-game stretch to push. But Sunday’s loss in New Orleans was an eye opener that should put elements of this ballclub on notice. I will now complain about three areas of the football team we’ve all been complaining about forever and try to offer solutions.
I’m sure many people out there want to crucify the Bears o-line after the 6 sack, 378 hit performance Sunday but I’m not going there. How does a Bears team in a close game for three quarters only rush the ball 11 times? How does a Bears team knowing (and we ALL knew!) the Saints would blitz heavily not compensate for that blitz by loading up the line and protecting? You might want to crucify them but from watching the game I wouldn’t be sure whom to actually crucify. Webb was outgunned a few times but for the most part the defender in the backfield beat no one at all and rushed unabated to #6.
It seems to me that once Martz gets some offensive success he assumes every one of his players is a Pro Bowler and subsequently the Bears are harassed by an opponent with an actual game plan.
Solution: PROTECT THE QUARTERBACK! It really is not that hard. Line up with two tights. That means using only two receivers but if your entire passing game is dumping the ball off to the back, who cares? This offense does nothing, achieves nothing, goes nowhere if the quarterback does not have time to throw the ball. Run the ball more than 11 times. Establish the damn run. And when you’re asking the quarterback to throw, protect him.
Is it possible the absence of Roy Williams and Earl Bennett leaves this receiving corps looking, well, like this? Is Devin Hester really ineffective if he doesn’t catch the ball behind the line of scrimmage? Are we really in the place where we’re relying on Dane Sanzenbacher to catch big third down tosses late? Can no wide receiver run a crossing route anymore?
Solution: A lot of this goes back to point one. If you don’t block for the quarterback, you can’t connect passes to wide receivers. But didn’t we go through this every-route-more-than-ten-yards thing last year? Didn’t the Bears start having a major of their success a year ago when the routes were reduced and the quarterback’s drops were shortened? Didn’t we f’n do this already?
Nope. The Bears will not win football games anytime Chris Conte and Major Wright are paired together at the back of the defense. Ditto if Craig Steltz is in there for either.
Solution: There isn’t one. Just get Chris Harris healthy. We’ve all known for months the Bears had no depth at safety and Sunday they paid for it. CH and Meriweather need to be the starters. And they need to be out there. Jerry can draft all the shitty white safeties he wants it doesn’t mean any of them can play professional football.
OVERALL: Bad game. And when you play this poorly against a good team, you’re going to lose. Get it fixed and get ready. Because goddamnit, it’s Packer Week.