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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  • Fuck a bench spot on the playoff roster, Coghlan is competing to bat cleanup.

    John Beasley 1 hour 54 min ago view
  • barely any...especially for an evening game. place looks 1/2 full at best to start the game.

    crunch 2 hours 16 min ago view
  • Listening on the radio. Are there any fans in the stands at all?

    Brick 2 hours 25 min ago view
  • "An MRI taken Monday on the right side of Jorge Soler showed no major damage."

    crunch 3 hours 26 min ago view
  • rare air though if he can keep it under 2. Sounds like Maddon already made up his mind though and Hendricks seems like the sort that would want to earn it. Guessing he gets a quick hook if he's still under 2 after 5 innings.

    Fwiw, he can give up 1 ER in 5 innings (or more) and still be under 2. If he gives up 2 ER, he would need throw 9 IP to keep it under 2. 1 ER in 4 IP would give him an ERA of exactly 2.

    In terms of WAR, it's still Scherzer by a lot (6.4), then Cueto (5.6), Lester (5.5), Kershaw (5.5), Roark (5.4), and then Hendricks (5.1)

    Rob G. 4 hours 40 min ago view
  • Boring lineup tonight in terms of guys trying to reach milestones -- no KB (40 HR), Addy (100 RBI) or JHey (can he keep it going?), and Lackey isn't really going for anything, plus the team has already reached 100 wins. I get the "rest" thing, although they will have 4 days off after Sunday, but....bleh.

    billybucks 5 hours 24 min ago view
  • Agree -- I think you want to keep him on a regular schedule.

    billybucks 5 hours 44 min ago view
  • Ramos torn ACL

    jacos 6 hours 12 min ago view
  • Sure, its not about his record.

    jacos 6 hours 13 min ago view
  • Do you start him Sunday or not?

    @jonmorosi Pitchers w/ sub-2.00 ERA in year of 185+ IP this century: Pedro ’00, Clemens ’05, Kershaw ’13/’14, Arrieta ’15, Greinke ’15, Hendricks ’16.

    Rob G. 7 hours 35 min ago view
  • Yeah -- that would be rough for him. But, Monty is getting people out, he's a lefty and he has experience working out of the bullpen. Hammel? None of the above.

    billybucks 8 hours 30 min ago view
  • even if he's not starting, abandoning hammel would be a bit of a 'screw you.' i think it might be -monty +hammel, but it's speculation.

    either way, someone's gonna be disappointed.

    crunch 9 hours 31 min ago view
  • Joe said he is leaning towards 11 pitchers and 14 position players.

    - 4 starters, Chapman, Rondon, Strop, CJ, Wood, Grimm, Monty. No dice for Cahill or Smith.
    - 3 catchers, Rizz, Zo, Addy, KB, Javy, Heyward, Fowler, Soler, Coghlan, TLS and then Sczcur over Almora?

    billybucks 9 hours 42 min ago view
  • Cubs 3B Jason Vosler made two really bad throws on consecutive AB in the 8th. Fortunately the game was no longer in doubt at the time  

    The first one was a one-hop lob that allowed the batter to reach base on an infield single, and the second was air-mailed so far over the first-baseman's head that it went over the fence and landed in Field #4.

    Arizona Phil 10 hours 17 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Despite the HR, Donnie Dewees is really more of a slash hitter (the HR was an opposite-field line-drive) who can accumulate lots of doubles & triples. He's also a good bunter and can get on base that way, too. Although he was thrown out trying to steal in the game, he's actually a good base-stealer and baserunner.

    Defensively he has plus-range and tracks fly balls OK, so he can play CF, but he has a rag arm that requires the middle infielders to go out further into CF to make relays.

    Arizona Phil 10 hours 18 min ago view
  • I don't know how many of you remember Bobby Knoop, who played 2B for the Angels, White Sox, and Royals back in the day, but he is a coach-emeritus for the Angels, and works with the infielders at Minor League Camp, Extended Spring Training, and Instructs. He's pretty spry for a 77-year old, and he really knows his shit.

    Arizona Phil 10 hours 45 min ago view