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How to Fix NFL Preseason in Three Easy Steps

| August 20th, 2019

This space has been belittling preseason football for a decade. These games have no relevance. They have never had any relevance. And they are a useless health risk.  It seems the entirety of the league has finally figured that out. And now the media has noticed!


Step 1. Two Games.

One of the biggest issues with the preseason is the ridiculousness of playing four games. The only reason these four games exist is because owners (a) can rip off their season ticket holders by forcing the purchase on them and (b) charge exorbitant rates to local television providers for the broadcast rights.  But networks are getting smarter and starting to realize these games not only have no value in their second halves, they have almost no value from the opening whistle. Thus you’ll notice endless commercials for local car dealers.

So cut the thing in half. And really push one of the two games as a developmental display. That means don’t play a single starter or relevant player. I would have been far more interested in seeing Tyler Bray play four quarters than seeing the Chase Daniel play with a bunch of guys he’ll never see in actual game action. Especially when you consider the Bears are a Mitch Trubisky or Daniel injury away from Bray being a pivotal component of their 2019 roster.

But the point here is ending the duplicity of the enterprise. Stop pretending these games are in any way a preparation for the regular season. It’s insulting.


Step 2. Free Entry, Half-Price Concessions Including Merchandise

Open the gates to everyone for the one game you’d be hosting.

Sell beer and soda and hot dogs for half price.

Sell jerseys and hats and all that bullshit for half price.

Turn this preseason game into a celebration of the fans. Make it ABOUT them. A father is way more likely to buy jerseys for the kids if the jerseys are $50 instead of $100. And he’ll definitely slam down a few $6 MGDs.

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Bears vs. Bengals Practice Game: A Running Diary

| August 10th, 2018

What follows will be a stream of consciousness blog, written in real time as I watch the the Bears and Bengals practice against each, in pads, with referees and paying fans. There will be no editing after the fact and, honestly, very little done while I’m writing. 


6:48 PM (All times presented in Eastern Standard)

One thing matters tonight: health. Here’s hoping every Bears starter that jogs onto the field, jogs off the field. The Bears starters could look terrific or look like total shit. Who cares? The season is still a full month away. Mitch Trubisky just met this entire receiving corps, with the exception of Kevin White. One would hope their chemistry would be drastically improved in September.


6:55 PM

I drink. A lot. But I also take off chunks of time, famously the first two months of every year. I haven’t had a drink in a week and it’s very funny to watch how my sweet tooth develops as a result. (There is so much damn sugar in booze.) Today I saw M&M peanuts at the grocery store and it was like the most beautiful girl in the world offered me a handy in the candy aisle. (Good name for a song – “Handy in the Candy”) I couldn’t resist. As I write this, I’m eating them like popcorn.


7:00 PM

I never knew Cincinnati was referred to “The Queen City”. Maybe in the second half I’ll google why. I’ve never been to Cincinnati. I can’t for the life of me think of a reason I would go to Cincinnati, unless Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park wanted to produce something of mine.

And the Bengals’ play-by-play guy just referred to the Bears as “the 0-1 Chicago Bears”. Do broadcasters really do that? They use win/loss record in the preseason to label the opponent?


7:07 PM

KICKOFF! Taquan Mizzell is back to return. So I see the Bears are very concerned with tonight’s game.


7:09 PM

Trubisky throws a bullet into the hands of Kevin White and he drops it. On the play, Trubisky got “roughed”. That’s what you want, your starting QB and the future of the franchise taking cheap shots from the league’s dirtiest team. In a practice game.


7:13 PM

Trubisky just took off on third down and I literally screamed “NO!”


7:15 PM

People seem to think I want them to hate the preseason too. I literally don’t care what anybody does for enjoyment, as long as its within the boundaries of the law. I watch Golf Channel 10 hours a day. I don’t expect other people to do that. I have multiple Fiddler on the Roof cast recordings in my car. I don’t care if you share my opinions. But that ain’t gonna stop me from sharing them.


7:21 PM

John Timu. Apparently got slower.

I have golf on my actual TV and they run commercials constantly for a local casino called Empire City. Here’s what I don’t get: why? The ad is just people walking out of the casino building with a pile of cash. They don’t advertise what’s special about their place. They just advertise that you can walk in without a lot of money and walk out with way more. Why does this require advertising? Everybody knows what a casino is. Just flash the address.


7:27 PM

Taquan draw on first down. Exciting shit.

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Saturday Night Should Be Glennon’s Last Chance

| August 17th, 2017

The preseason is meaningless.

Mostly.

There is one exception to this rule: when a team finds itself embroiled in a quarterback “controversy”. And the Bears, especially after the events of last week, now find themselves firmly in the midst of a battle at the most important position in all of sports.

From Rick Telander in the Chicago Sun-Times:

Now make Trubisky the starting quarterback.

Yes, he’s only 22 and started only 13 college games at North Carolina. And the NFL is mean and vicious and eats its young.

Again, so what? Life is hard and then you die. Maybe you’ve heard.

Trubisky ran a 4.67-second 40-yard dash at the NFL combine — the same as athletic Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson — and his feet never will be faster than they are now. His arm is a cannon.

This is not news around these parts. No one lurking in Media Meadow or strolling down Blog Boulevard has been as steadfast when it comes to what the Bears should do at quarterback, starting week one, starting against the defending conference champions. When the team boldly traded up and selected Mitch Trubisky in April, Trubisky immediately became the best quarterback on their roster. And there was nothing to debate.

Trubisky is a wow talent. Mike Glennon, the incumbent starter due to a hefty one-year paycheck and limited alternatives, is not. I’ve been prone to saying “Glennon stinks”. Maybe that’s my pithy way of saying, well, no, Glennon does in fact stink.

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