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With Defense Non-Existent, Division Hopes Move Squarely Onto Offense’s Shoulders

| November 25th, 2013

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Does Sunday’s loss to the St. Louis Rams really warrant a rapid fire recap? Do the folks who read this site daily not understand that Chris Conte takes terrible angles to running backs, Josh McCown is a wonderful caretaker for the offense, Julius Peppers plays well every other week, blah blah blah? Do I really need to take each member of the Bears defense to task for being who they are when most of them have less than two months remaining in a Bears uniform? My opinion on the Bears defense and the entirety of the Bears loss Sunday was summed up in two of my Tweets:

Bears fans. Ask yourself how many defenders on the unit are good. Not how many can be good or used to be. How many defenders today are good?

Sad fact: answer might be one. Tim Jennings.

Blaming Mel Tucker is silly. Bears are not being out-coached on the defensive side of the ball. They are being beaten in every single one-on-one match-up. And there’s a very simple reason. They’re not talented.

And yet the Bears find themselves in the thick of a division title race due to an injury forced by Shea McClellin and the Detroit Lions doing a brilliant impression of the Detroit Lions. As Zach Zaidman Tweeted Monday morning, “Bears coach Marc Trestman today to @WBBMNewsradio: “We’re right where we were a week ago. There’s been no change.” And he’s right. The Bears organization knows they don’t have a viable collection of defensive players right now but they can’t throw in the towel on a division up for grabs.

If it hadn’t already, if somehow the last three weeks masked serious defensive issues, now this season moves squarely onto the shoulders of the offense. And twenty-one points won’t be enough to beat Minnesota or Dallas or Philadelphia or Green Bay or maybe even Cleveland. Twenty-one points might not be enough to win the first halves of those games. The Bears need to enter a five-week, two-minute drill and score every time they possess the ball.

Crazy as it may sound the Bears may find themselves playing a football game in Minnesota for sole possession of the division lead Sunday. (They would of course need the Packers to beat the Lions on Thanksgiving.) And they are just as likely to surrender the the NFL single-game rushing record of 297 yards as they are to take the division lead.

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