The Bear Truth: Holy Crap the Bears Won

I'm gonna let The Bear Truth website evaporate into the Internet ether over the next few days, but I'll occasionally post some thoughts on here and be sure to team them up with a Cubs related post for those that do not wish to discuss football.

To the recap...

The Good: They won and they did it easily. Color me surprised. The defense was outstanding, holding a good offense albeit not great offense to two field goals. Classic Lovie Smith defense, bend, but don't break, force some turnovers with Old Man Urlacher's full out dive being the play of the game. The fumble return for a TD was just the icing on the cake, and that one was pretty much all on Matt Ryan. The only real mistake on defense was the Michael Turner 53-yard run.

Cutler and the offense looked good for the most part. A 107.8 QB rating and 2 TD's with over 300 yards looked good in the boxscore. A lot of that yardage was on well executed screens, but it's not like anyone doubts Cutler's ability to throw it downfield. And a lot of good offenses and QB's can get their yards on well-executed short yardage throws. I'm just happy the Bears finally know how to execute a proper screen. Roy Williams made the catches that he didn't in the preseason. And is just me or is refreshing to know that third and long isn't an automatic death sentence to the offense? They actually seemed to play their best in those situations.

The Bad: Cutler was sacked 5 times, some of that is the offensive line, some of that is Mike Martz's offensive scheme, some of that is Cutler. Cutler first half could have went from great to disastrous with two tipped balls in traffic that didn't get picked. Cutler missed a ridiculously open Kellen Davis in the red zone on a brilliant bootleg playcall with the TE and 3 linemen sneaking the opposite way. It might not be the easiest throw on the run, but I'm guessing he's made it in practice and it's a play who just have to make.

Mike Martz's playcalling with a 24-point lead that led to the INT returned for a TD. Martz has his strengths, running out the clock is not one of them...or protecting the QB.

The Ugly: Brutal road game at New Orleans this week and then the Packers at home in Week 3, so pretty close to a must-win for the Bears and they delivered.

Comments

I thought that me being one of the writers there would serve you better. Fuck people.

I blame Real Neal. Only cuz I pulled him out of my cranky hat.

Was it really 5 times?

I don't worry about M's play calling unless it's a close game.

I read the line was ok. NO? I couldn't see the game.

one sack was a slide near out of bounds near the end of the game that he probably would have thrown away, but wanted to keep the clock running.

The O-line did well getting out on screens and stuff, but certainly got beat a few times and badly. I recall Webb twice and the new guy from Wisconsin at least once.

A lot of new bodies on the O-line, it'll take some time to gel together. That being said, I don't have a lot of faith in them either.

I think I have better faith this year than last. I know a lot of median dudes were upset over Kruentz getting kicked off, but if he was the captain, last year's ship sunk bad.

who would have guessed that Orton vs. Grossman still isn't settled?

Based on last night's performance, it's Grossman FTW

I thought it was settled along time ago that Sexy Rexy was better.

Eh....Orton is steadier....Grossman will make more soul crushing INT's....
Grossman: 41 games 54.4% comp, 42 TD/40Int, 5.6 yds/att, 72.1 rtg.
Orton: 62G: 58.1 comp%, 71 TD/ 48 INT, 6.2 yds/att, 79.6 rtg.

Orton's last two seasons in Denver have been much better than Grossman's ever been.

Agreed.

It's not about the eyebrows, Mr B.

other than Orton being decent the last 2 years and Grossman having one foot out the NFL door, sure it was settled :)

Grossman looked pretty damn good Sunday though from what I saw, someone finally got through to him to step up in the pocket and not run backwards, at least for one game.

I always preferred Orton, but I'm biased as a Purdue fan.

I hope you do continue to post a Bears article per week here. It's a shame that the other site didn't take off the same.

More Good:
Cutler played under control and moved the ball well down the field. Hester finally did something with a screen pass. O-Line didn't get their asses completely handed to them. TE's seem to do what the offense looks for them to do. Knox and Williams both caught some balls down the field. Kahlil Bell is still better that Chester Taylor. The offense scored early and gave the defense a lead to protect.
The defense held the Falcons to two field goals - extremely impressive. Tillman had a monster game. Urlacher had one of his best performances that I can recall. Jennings continues to defy the odds and play like he's not 5'8". Peppers continues to be a game changer, and Melton looks like he might really be a three-technique. Podlesh is a really good punter, and special teams are solid as usual. Gould is killing those kickoffs from the 35.

More Bad:
No real running game. I can think of four times off the top of my head that Forte was dropped for a loss about when he was taking the handoff. Webb needs help to consistently block anyone and he still had a bunch of penalties. Not much of a push from the line on the run.
The defensive line's success was against a backup C/G combo. Briggs didn't stand out to me much.

More Ugly:
I would like someone to break Roy Williams' hand/fingers the next time he makes the first down signal. I always thought that was a horse shit celebration when he was a Lion, and he's attached enough to it to keep it up. Act like you've been there before, son!
I have a hard time believing that we'll be able to take down the Falcons and Saints in successive weeks. I don't think our secondary can play man-man well enough and Brees will find the open man in the zone with all the weapons the Saints have. I hope I'm wrong again

The entire Houston Texans crowd yells "FIRST DOWN" (encouraged by the stadium announcer) when they get one. Two things that always bothered me about that is like you said, you're supposed to get first downs, don't congratulate yourself. The second is that it gets the crowd all riled up when your offense wants it to be quite.

The Saints' best wideout is hurt. Hopefully that will help, but I am looking for a fantasy defense to stick in against the Saints at home.

Forte did rush for an average of 4.3 yards per carry, so it wasn't all bad in that area.

I'm very happy with Forte. My point was more that the O-Line allowed penetration enough times to keep his yardage down. If those 4 runs go for 3-4 yards per carry that's a swing of 24-30 yards, then he's near 100 yards rushing on the day.

I think to some degree the offensive line sets up like they're going to pass block, regardless of the play call, sort of like a draw. I didn't watch the game, but that's what they did a lot last year.

I'll have to watch for that. I know they're bigger this season, but they don't seem to have that push off the line. I guess I'm a believer that he who controls the line of scrimmage wins, and I am surprised that the interior of the line can appear to be pushed around and still have a successful day. Maybe I'm being a little too hard on the line, but I feel like they're a weak spot on the team

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  • been like that everytime I've been there too including Jack Murphy/Qualcomm Stadium. Cubs travel well. It was pretty loud for Angels/Cubs this year and decent for Dodgers/Cubs but Dodger fans definitely turn out better than the Padre fans.

    Rob G. 1 hour 22 min ago view
  • When I went in the 2007-2008 range, it was at least 75% Cubs fans.

    blockhead25 1 hour 34 min ago view
  • Jeff Sullivan on Kris Bryant's lack of clutch hitting in 2016. Very good stuff, unsatisfying conclusion (it's probably random).

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-one-problem-wit...

    John Beasley 1 hour 36 min ago view
  • I was at Tuesday's game in San Diego. It looked like half of Chicago was at Petco. We were much louder than Padres fans.

    BobbyD 1 hour 36 min ago view
  • We may have a chance to catch one in October. Although hell, I couldn't deal with my co-workers if we lose to them.

    blockhead25 1 hour 56 min ago view
  • think I have to miss this series too (also was at the Arrieta game last year). But in my case, just had a busy weekend with work and kids have a bunch of activities and we made it to Opening Day in Anaheim and a couple of games in Wrigley this year which we normally don't get too...so not feeling like I'm missing out this year.

    Rob G. 2 hours 9 min ago view
  • they're awful

    Rob G. 2 hours 11 min ago view
  • I hope the Cubs play three good teams.

    Jackstraw 2 hours 13 min ago view
  • First year I'm not going to a Cubs/Dodgers game in a long time. 4 month old baby kinda changes plans around. But the no-hitter I was at last year can last in the memory banks for awhile.

    I think Dodger Dogs are awful. I love hot dogs, but those are crap.

    blockhead25 2 hours 48 min ago view
  • ayyyy...get a doyer dog, then.

    crunch 3 hours 8 min ago view
  • I'm going to be at this one! Am told a Dodger Dog is just a long hot dog. Disappointing.

    Charlie 3 hours 10 min ago view
  • If my math is correct, if the Cubs play .500 baseball for the rest of the season, they will finish with 99 wins. I only just confirmed through Baseball Reference that 97 wins last year (and 2008) were the most Cubs wins in my lifetime. I think that last year while Arrieta was pitching better than Cy F. Young I didn't really get or appreciate what he was doing. I'm trying to try to grasp in the moment just how fucking remarkable this season is.

    Jackstraw 4 hours 2 min ago view
  • This is awesome.

    https://twitter.com/JeffNuich/status/769227069788131329

    (CSN Chicago will air Vin Scully's call of the Sunday Cubs vs. Dodgers game...well for an inning at least)

     

    Rob G. 5 hours 1 min ago view
  • I figured this was going to be the most meaningless regular season in Cubs history...and it is pretty much on point, although I certainly didn't think we'd have close to a 14 game lead.

    But, one bad hop in game 1 in October could change absolutely everything we will remember about this year.

    blockhead25 5 hours 39 min ago view
  • oh he's great, there's like 10 great pitchers in the NL right now that can flat out dominate though. Picking #2 (behind Kershaw) doesn't matter much to me right now. Much like whom the Cubs will play in the playoffs won't matter much, they're gonna be good teams.

    Rob G. 5 hours 52 min ago view
  • The Cubs great pitching has a lot more to do with their great defense this year and plenty of good luck  (#1 in ERA, #4 in FIP behind Nats, Mets and Dodgers with a rather ridiculous .258 BABIP against Cubs' pitchers).

    Cubs pitchers do strike out more hitters than Giants pitchers and do walk more hitters than Giants pitchers so that's a few more balls in play. Cubs' pitchers actually have a higher groundball rate though. Crawford is just really good and baseball happens.

    Rob G. 5 hours 54 min ago view