Sunday, December 20, 2009
No snow job: The Bears are awful
By Jeff Dickerson
Jay Cutler threw three interceptions against the Ravens in the Bears' loss on Sunday.
This was the first Bears game I've missed in the last six years (thanks weather/United), but you didn't have to travel to Baltimore to come to this conclusion: The Bears are an awful football team.
There are very few people you can say are part of the solution, and not the problem. It was encouraging to see Matt Forte run the ball well in the first half, and Earl Bennett continues to make solid contributions -- Devin Hester should never return another punt in 2009.
After that, what else is there to say?
Jay Cutler is a train wreck, and if the Bears don't find a way to fix him in the offseason, this franchise is doomed for the foreseeable future. All that money, all those draft picks, and this guy can't protect the football in the red zone?! Cutler's first interception to Dominique Foxworth was inexcusable -- how does he not see the guy? You've got to give Jarrett Johnson credit on the second pick, but again, it comes as the Bears were trying to punch the ball in the end zone. Demoralizing, to say the least.
The play calling continues to be suspect, especially on the failed goal-line series. Why try that pass to Greg Olsen on fourth down, when the margin for error is so slim? Seems like a play better suited for second or third down. And why don't the Bears ever call a bootleg for Cutler so he can roll out of the pocket? The only time Cutler moves outside the tackle box is on a busted play. Why is offensive coordinator Ron Turner so opposed to that line of thinking? Didn't we all see Cutler scramble with a lot of success in the first half? The guy can run, let him!
The defense was average, although the Ravens were working with a short field a lot because of Bears turnovers. Zack Bowman -- who did not look one-hundred percent -- struggled in pass coverage, as did Corey Graham on the first touchdown throw to Todd Heap. Charles Tillman was also burned on a touchdown, while Kevin Payne continues to take bad angles when chasing down ball carriers. Gaines Adams got extra playing time thanks to an injury to Adewale Ogunleye -- and did nothing. In fact, Adams got worked over by rookie offensive tackle Michael Oher, like Adams, a former first round pick. However, unlike the Bears newest defensive end, Oher can play.
It's tough to say why the Bears feel things can get better with this current regime in place. Will they feel the same way after the Bears lose to Detroit on Jan. 3? Because, let me tell you, that is a real possibility.