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Three More Thoughts on Bears v. Packers, or No Podcast This Week

| September 7th, 2018

The podcast is not going to be a weekly occurrence this season. There will be around 8-10 episodes during the regular season, beginning next week with The Return of Adam Jahns. (I think Jahnsy and Ryan Pace are giggling on a seesaw in Niles right now.) In the meantime, some thoughts…


Thought #1

When Mike Pettine was working with Rex Ryan in New Jersey the team had a hellish time dealing with tight ends. (A lot of this was the result of over-blitzing to pressure the quarterback.) And while Allen Robinson and Taylor Gabriel have been recovering from/dealing with injuries this summer, Trey Burton and Mitch Trubisky have developed a rapport that’s going to drive defenses crazy. Pettine will empty the kitchen cabinets Sunday night and Trubisky will use his security blanket to move the chains. Big opener for Burton.


Thought #2

Brian Urlacher told Dan Patrick on Wednesday that under Lovie Smith the Bears once ran cover-2 against Aaron Rodgers on 46 of 47 plays in the second half. And won the game. (Sounds like a bit of a stretch but I’m not about to do the research.) Vic Fangio should be able to generate more than enough pass rush with his front. Why not go to some Cover-2 looks Sunday night and try to limit Rodgers’ ability to beat the defense over the top? These aren’t great pass catchers in Green Bay. If they have to make 10-12 plays to get into the end zone, against this Bears defense, they’ll make a mistake (or be forced into one) before they put seven on the board.


Thought #3

Cody Parkey had a so-so summer. While I’m told he’s been lights out in non-public practices, the team has some concern as to whether the Jupiter, Florida native (and I assume golfer because that’s what you do down there) is ready for the bright lights of Bears football. You can miss kicks in Miami. Nobody goes to those games. You miss kicks in Bears v. Packers, it gets noticed. Everyone in the organization will breathe a massive sigh of relief if Parkey posts a clean sheet Sunday night.

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Miller & Hicks Shining This Summer, HoF Commentary, Kitties & More!

| August 7th, 2018

Three Quick Thoughts

  • This entire training camp is becoming about Anthony Miller. The Bears have not had an offensive rookie create this kind of summer buzz, around the entire league, in modern history. And if you think that’s an exaggeration, well, it’s not. When the Bears drafted Miller, a high-ranking personnel man in the league texted me one word: “Fuck.” In Trubisky-to-Miller, the Bears have an opportunity to develop one of those great quarterback/receiver combos all those other teams seem to routinely showcase.
  • Roquan Smith has not yet arrived in Illinois and yet inside linebacker has been one of the team’s strengths thus far due to the emergence of Nick Kwiatkoski as a viable option. But make no mistake about it. Kwik is not Roquan. They are not comparable athletes. And if Kwik is out there trying to cover in Green Bay Week 1, Aaron Rodgers will get Jimmy Graham lined up over him and pick him apart. At some point, the Bears and Roquan just need to suck it up and get this deal done.
  • One player who shouldn’t see a snap this entire preseason: Akiem Hicks. Simply put, he is the most important player on this defensive roster and his health is paramount to their success. And from all reports, he has been a dominant force in Bourbonnais. Why risk his health for the sake of reps he doesn’t need? Hicks was burnt out by the end of 2017 due to overuse and the defense reflected that. Without proven pass rushers on the edge, the Bears should value Hicks every bit as much as they do their young QB. Because he’s that important.

Urlacher Hall of Fame Speech

  • Thought Urlacher did a wonderful job on stage, especially with his lack of comfort when it comes to public speaking. Considering he had to share the stage with Ray Lewis, the Human Bullshit Machine, it was a refreshing to experience actual humility and grace.
  • I’ve never been an Urlacher devotee but I freely admit he’s the finest cover-2 middle linebacker in history and belongs in the Hall. And when I say I’m not a devotee, it doesn’t mean I don’t consider him a great player. I do. But from the Lovie Smith era, I still have him behind Peanut Tillman and Devin Hester.

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Celebrating Brian Urlacher, Hall of Famer

| August 4th, 2018

Brian Urlacher will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this evening, the culmination of one of the great careers in the history of the Chicago Bears.

Over the next two days I want to use the comments section below to allow fans to share their favorite Urlacher plays, stories, moments…etc. Anything about Brian that resonated with you.

For me, I never forgot seeing #54 pick off Chad Pennington in the end zone at Giants Stadium in 2006, no more than 40 yards from where I was sitting. It was just one of the many times an Urlacher play completely turned a game on its head. (The play can be found at the :30 mark of the video below.)



On behalf of myself and the DBB team, congrats Brian. And thank you.

I’ll share some of the best comments re: Urlacher in game previews throughout the season.

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DaBearsPod: The Brian Urlacher Edition [AUDIO]

| February 9th, 2018

On this week’s special edition of DaBearsPod:

  • Jeff finishes off the Josh McDaniels/Bears discussion, monologue-style.
  • Former Urlacher teammate Cam Worrell tells us all what made Lach special on and off the field. (There’s a great story here about a banquet Cam attended years after playing with Brian.)
  • A should-be-more-famous clip of Urlacher defending Cutler after the 2010 NFC title game.
  • Reverend Dave sings 54’s praises from eastern Africa.
  • Music from Monty Python & Henry Mancini!

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: A Few on 52 & Urlacher, Urlacher, Urlacher…

| February 5th, 2018

Five Super Bowl Thoughts

  • First Half Note 1: That was a horrible half of a football. Was it entertaining? Sure. But so is college football and that is rarely good either. Blown coverages, horrible tackling, wide open receivers, college-level kicking. This game should be the showcase of the league’s two best teams. Sadly, when it comes to the 2017 season, this game may be all we got.
  • First Half Note 2: The Eagles didn’t just look tougher, they looked like they had the better sideline. And even in the two Patriots Super Bowl losses, that was never the case. Pederson was running circles around Patricia.
  • Halftime: The halftime show was one of the greatest I’ve ever seen. Oh wait, no, I was cleaning my crockpot and listening to Harry Nilsson tracks in my kitchen while some people pantomimed horn playing in the middle of a football field for no reason whatsoever. Would love to see the NFL skip this worthless musical display one year and instead replace it with a speech from the Walter Payton Man of the Year winner after a short video presentation saluting that player’s work. Why not use your largest platform to promote some of the good being done by those involved in the game instead of promoting Justin Timberlake to sell some Pepsi?
  • Second Half Note 1: Tweeted a question. If you were the Eagles, and you won the Super Bowl with Foles, would you consider offering Wentz to the Browns for their two early firsts? Watching the second half, if I were the Eagles, I would even hesitate. Wentz is a terrific player but this Eagles team is proving they can win with Foles and he’s affordable. So why not stack the roster around him?
  • Second Half Note 2: Let’s be honest. This game came down to one play, the Brandon Graham sack/fumble of Brady late in the fourth. It was the only defensive play made in this Big 12 affair.
  • Final Thought: Think about what Doug Pederson and Nick Foles and the Eagles just did. They beat (a) the defending NFC champs (b) the league’s best defense and (c) Brady & Belichick en route to the franchise’s first Super Bowl title. This is legendary stuff in Philadelphia.

All Urlacher…after the jump!

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Will He Get In on the First Ballot?

| February 3rd, 2018


I’m not big on debating whether or not players belong in the Hall of Fame. And honestly, I loved Brian Urlacher but I don’t much care if he gets into Canton on the first or fifth try. (I’ll be much more passionate when this conversation moves to Charles Tillman and Devin Hester – both of whom I believe fundamentally changed the NFL.) Nevertheless, tonight Urlacher will find out his fate when it comes to the first ballot. Good luck, BU.

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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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Peanut Belongs In The Hall of Fame

| July 20th, 2016

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Administrative Note: This will be the first of 300 columns with the same headline.

When the 2021 NFL Hall of Fame Class is announced, Charles Tillman’s name should be on the list.

It’s not going to happen. Tillman spent his career being thought of as just a local hero even though he played in a major media market on a team that regularly had one of the best defenses in the NFL. While Tillman was one of the best players in the NFL, he was never really recognized for it.

Charles Woodson is a lock to be on that list. Tillman was a better player.

Woodson was most known for his ability to take the ball away, but he wasn’t necessarily better at that than Tillman. Woodson had a combined 98 interceptions and forced fumbles in 254 games. Peanut had 82 in 168 games. If you were to average that out to a 16 game season, Tillman would’ve averaged nearly eight per season, compared to around six for Woodson.

Woodson had more interceptions, but even there the difference isn’t great. Woodson averaged 4.1 interceptions per 16 games, while Tillman was at 3.6. While he could take the ball away, Woodson wasn’t nearly as good in coverage as Tillman was (the Packers typically put Tramon Williams on the other team’s best receiver).

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A Few Random Thoughts During an NFL Slow Period

| March 24th, 2015

wiz

Thought #1. Bears should meet the $4M a year demand for Stefan Wisniewski. Per a report from Brad Biggs in the Tribune:

Wisniewski is recovering from shoulder surgery after last season when he played with a torn labrum. The former second-round pick of the Raiders has made visits to the Seahawks and Bucs, and the Rams and Chiefs are also known to be interested. No team has been willing to meet his request of $4 million per season and it could be he winds up on a one- or two-year prove-it contract. At this point, it would be a mistake to rule out the Bears.

Wisniewski is young and talented and the kind of physical presence needed to anchor a John Fox offensive line. An interior offensive line of Slauson-Wiz-Long would set a new tone on the that side of the ball.

Thought #2. Jarvis Jenkins and Mason Foster are smart, short-term solutions on defense. No, neither of these players is going to the Pro Bowl. No, neither of these players are going to make Bears fans forget Dan Hampton or Dick Butkus. But they would be a solid, professional additions to a defensive unit desperate for such. (I’m assuming Mason Foster ultimately ends up in Chicago.)

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