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Week 9 Game Preview: Bears at Titans

| November 6th, 2020


Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears.

Even when they are laden with Covid.

But let’s not bury the lede. It’s Arlington Hambright Week!


Thoughts on the Tennessee Titans

The Titans are a pretty easy team to understand.

First, they are not good defensively. They give up nearly 400 yards and 26.3 points per game. They might have the least impressive pass rush in the sport. They do manage to take the ball away and their +8 turnover margin is a big reason they’re 5-2 and tied atop the AFC South.

But with the Bears starting this collection of misfit toys on the offensive line, will they even be able to exploit obvious deficiencies?

Second, and not surprisingly, their offense is all about Derrick Henry. In the era of running back committees, Henry is averaging 23 carries a game and he’s the most productive back around. If Henry is running well, that opens the play action game for Ryan Tannehill. (Hell, even if he’s not running well, he’s always one carry away from an 70-yard touchdowns.) Two things the Bears should be concerned about:

  • The quarterback getting outside the pocket and picking up big chunks of yardage with his legs. He does this 2-3 times a game at pivotal moments. On third downs, I’d consider spying him with Roquan Smith.
  • Jonnu Smith. When you put on Titans tape the kid jumps off the screen. After seeing the Bears struggle to contain a 78 year-old Jared Cook a week ago, the younger, more athletic Smith should seriously concern them.

Saluting Nashville: Five Favorite Dolly Tunes

(5) Islands in the Stream

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(4) I Will Always Love You

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(3) Hard Candy Christmas

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Forte’s Exit Leaves Hole at Running Back

| February 18th, 2016

matt-forte

There is no question Matt Forte lost a step and little disagreement about the Bears decision to let him go. But the reality of the situation is that by exiling Forte the club has created a big hole at the running back position. Forte, even after injury and the emergence of Jeremy Langford, was getting nearly 60 percent of the carries and was the team’s best back by every conceivable measurement.

Langford is most known for his speed and explosiveness but Forte led him in runs of fifteen yards or more by the staggering total of 10-3. Ka’Deem Carey is known for running hard and breaking tackles but — according to Pro Football Focus — Forte averaged more yards after contact (2.24-2.05) and broke a tackle once every 9 touches. Carey did once every 9.2 touches.

Even if you were to combine Langford and Carey into one back, they weren’t as good as Forte. Langford averaged 1.76 yards after contact and broke a tackle once every 17 touches and Carey has never had a run longer than 15 yards. (He’s had runs longer than 10 yards just twice.) Forte also averaged about a half-yard more per carry overall than the other two combined.

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