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Bears Beat Giants (Breathe…) & Move to First Place in NFC North

| October 11th, 2013

first-place-ribbon-540x388

These are my first ever (I think) rapid first game notes taken during the game. Not usually my approach but we’re giving it ago…

FIRST QUARTER

  • The turnover-or-bust defense was in full effect. Nice plays on the ball by Bowman and Jennings (for a touchdown) but allowing Brandon Jacobs to gash the defensive line and linebackers was disconcerting.
  • Lance Briggs getting barreled on the Jacobs touchdown run was oddly sad.
  • No pass rush outside the opening drive.
  • Understand Marc Trestman’s approach on fourth down but always want the zero off the board as soon as possible. Why take a turnover and allow it to be a momentum builder for your opponent?
  • Brilliant work by Cutler and Marshall on the second Bears drive. When these two are in sync they are arguably the most fun pair in football to watch work.
  • Bears have had substitution issues this season. I’ll write it off to a new coaching staff until around November. Then I will yell about it.

SECOND QUARTER

  • How does Brandon Marshall get that wide open in the end zone? (Answer: Giants secondary.)
  • Major Wright out of position again on a Reuben Randle touchdown catch down the right sideline. Looked flat out easy for Eli Manning. Wright’s season continues to be a horrible disappointment.
  • Pass rush still has not arrived.
  • Kyle Long is one impressive player. He gets outside faster than the tailback.
  • Jay Cutler made a brilliant read on the third-and-short slant to Marshall and the back shoulder pylon touchdown pass to the same man. I told ya. When they’re in sync…
  • Did Joe D call that idiotic short kickoff from Robbie Gould? Take the damn touchback.
  • Devin Hester yelling on the sideline is exactly what the special team units need. They need leadership because they’ve been awful.
  • Cutler’s throw over the middle to Martellus – with Jon Beason closing – was one of the best displays of his arm strength I’ve seen since he arrived.
  • I disagreed on the clock management at the end of the half. Bears only had one timeout. I don’t use that timeout until I’ve gained the position I’m comfortable with for the field goal. Then I take my shots to the end zone. You DON’T want to burn the timeout and find yourself spiking balls, kicking from awkward angles. It’s only halftime.
  • Adam Podlesh had a brilliant half. No punts.

HALFTIME SCORE: BEARS 24, GIANTS 14

THIRD QUARTER

  • ┬áJay Cutler’s ability to extend drives with runs is so underrated.
  • Jordan Mills is the only liability on the Bears offensive line but I credit the organization for letting him make his mistakes on the field. Bushrod is good enough with protection to allow it.
  • Great kick, Robbie Gould. There was a time when fifty yard kicks were difficult for him. Now he’s simply put the best field goal kicker in the game.
  • Great move by Shea McClellin to draw the tight end to a false start. Kid takes a beaten so I might as well praise him for the one or two nice moments of his game.
  • 3rd and 12, Giants reeling. Great call by Mel Tucker to send the linebackers at Eli. Clear departure from the Lovie Smith era.
  • Why does the end around work with Alshon Jeffery and not Devin Hester? Marc Trestman.
  • Kyle Long’s high school footage was amazing.
  • Cutler missed a wide open Alshon Jeffery on a first-and-ten in Giants territory. Rushed a throw due to pressure from JPP.
  • No. Pass. Rush.
  • Reuben Randle was ruled to have given himself up? How does that work? How is slamming the ball to the ground giving yourself up?
  • Huge pass interference by Tim Jennings. Bears simply revealing themselves to be a poor defensive football team.

FOURTH QUARTER

  • Cutler’s touch throw to Forte on third and two might have been his best of the game.
  • Cutler’s grounding of the football is as poor a football decision as possible. You can’t take the team out of field goal range, out of a possible two possession lead. Terribly poor decision making.
  • Cutler identified protection, Long picked up the backer, Cutler put a perfect pass to Jeffery and the receiver just missed it.
  • I feel at 5:21 to go the Bears will lose.
  • Then things started happen.
  • If Eli Manning doesn’t miss an absolutely wide open tight end, this game goes the Giants way. (Or at least forces the Bears to probably score in a minute.)
  • The penalty for defensive holding ruins the drama but wins the game.

FINAL SCORE: BEARS 27, GIANTS 21

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