Data Responds: Bears at Vikings

| December 31st, 2017

Sorry for the break the last few weeks. I haven’t been able to watch games live due to various holiday scheduling hijinks. Darn that real life for getting in the way!

Before we get into today’s game specifically, reports are that John Fox will be fired today. I won’t miss you as Chicago’s head coach.

In general, this game looked very much like a disinterested team playing out the string on the road for a soon-to-be-fired coaching staff against a hungry opponent playing to lock up a first round bye.


  • The Bears got the ball to start and opened with a heavy set Jordan Howard run into a stacked box for no gain. On their 2nd drive, they followed that up with a Jordan Howard run into a stacked box for -4 yards. Shockingly, both drives ended in 3 and outs. Oh how I am not going to miss that.
  • On Chicago’s 3rd drive, they threw the ball on 1st down! You’ll be surprised to find out that not being incredibly predictable actually worked. Of course, the Bears followed that up with a FB dive into a 9 man box on 3rd and 1 (why is Michael Burton still a thing?), which lost yardage and forced a punt. Before they could get the punt off, the Bears took a delay of game penalty, because of course.
  • Rookie QB Mitchell Trubisky had a bad rookie moment that resulted in a safety. Under pressure, he kept backing up until he was in the end zone, which was the mistake. He then threw the ball away to pick up an intentional grounding penalty, which is a safety in the end zone. My complaint is not with the grounding, but with the fact that he backed up into the end zone first. He could have taken the sack at the 3 yard line, and needs to know the field position situation there.
  • Trubisky also had a terrible throw in the fourth quarter where he missed a wide-open Dontrelle Inman because his feet were not properly set. Despite a clean pocket, he did something weird where he torqued his upper body, which caused him to put the ball far too wide and out of bounds. Those mechanical issues, and the corresponding accuracy concerns, have been a repeated problem this offseason, and are the #1 thing Trubisky needs to work on this offseason.

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Audibles From the Long Snapper: Ten Days Out From Camp

| July 17th, 2017


You know it’s the dead zone of the NFL calendar when Brad Biggs is doing deep dives into the fullback position. In his Trib piece he dissects what’s at stake for Michael Burton in Bourbonnais. A selection:

Burton enjoyed a productive rookie season for the Lions in 2015 before the position was phased out of the offense midway through last season. The Bears also have Freddie Stevenson, an undrafted rookie from Florida State, on the 90-man roster.

In order for a fullback to make sense on the 53-man roster, and more importantly the 46-man gameday roster, the Bears will have to make better use of the position than they did in 2016. Lasike was active for 10 games, on the practice squad for four weeks and inactive for the final two games. More importantly, he was on the field for only 76 offensive snaps and 34 plays on special teams. Lasike was a developmental player, and a broken wrist in the preseason led to a reduced role at the outset.

Sun-Times Survives?

Honestly, I don’t know what the work is like in the Sun-Times off the sports pages. Honestly, I don’t know even know the non-Bears sports pages. But the Bears writing in the Sun-Times is simply better than the Trib’s army these days. Am I biased? Of course I am. My friend is there. But my friend is also really, really good at his job.

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