Idonije: 'We are better than them'
December, 11, 2011
By Jeff Dickerson | ESPNChicago.com
AP Photo/Jack DempseyLance Briggs said his offense scored enough to win, but some fans may argue.DENVER -- Forget for a moment that the Chicago Bears' third consecutive loss caused them to lose ground in the NFC wild card chase.
The genuine feeling of unhappiness in the club's postgame locker room arose from the fact the Bears truly believe they were the better football team on the field Sunday.
"It's frustrating because we are better than them," Bears defensive end Israel Idonije said. "We are better than that. It's just ones those you shake your head. At the end of the day it's on us. We have to find a way to get it done."
Idonije scoffed at the notion Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow was responsible for Denver's late-game victory, the sixth comeback Tebow has led in his short NFL career.
"I don't care about all that," Idonije said. "All that fourth quarter stuff ... it's about us. I don't care who is out there. At the end of the day, fourth quarter, you got to be better and make plays. Bottom line.
"It came down to us. Got to get a stop, got to play better down the stretch. I don't know exactly what happened but we had opportunities, so we just have to finish."
After being held scoreless for the nearly the entire afternoon, Denver put points on the board on each of its final three drives. The Bears' offense, especially running back Marion Barber, needs to shoulder some of the blame for allowing the Broncos back into the game, the defense is supposed to slam the door shut in late fourth-quarter situations.
"They found a way to win it," Bears linebacker Lance Briggs said. "Our offense gave us enough points to win the game. We go into overtime, we're in position and their team made a play."
Perhaps no player summed up the Bears mood following the loss better than safety Craig Steltz, who started in place of the injured Major Wright. Steltz turned in a solid performance versus Denver, but was visibly crushed and one of the last defenders to leave the locker room.
"It's tough to swallow," Steltz said. "We fought our butts off to the end and into overtime. It's going to be a long week."
That's probably an understatement.