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Tuesday, September 7, 2010
BBAO: Bears 'plan on winning a lot'

By Kevin Seifert
ESPN.com

We're Black and Blue All Over:

The Chicago Bears held what by all accounts was an interesting Q&A session with 2,000 season-ticket holders Monday night. More than a few fans expressed concern about the Bears' 0-4 preseason and their prospects for 2010, at one point prompting coach Lovie Smith to offer this response (via Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times):

"We plan on winning a lot of football games this year, and those comments you are making, I think this will be the last time we hear them from you.''

At this time of year, coaches have no choice but to offer positive appraisals of the upcoming season. This is the NFL's happy season, when everyone is undefeated (and also winless). But Rick Morrissey of the Sun-Times writes that fans "seem to know better this time around."
Morrissey: "If Lovie Smith had ever been publicly honest about his team -- like, just once -- maybe more people would believe him when he says everything will be fine. He'd have built up some equity by now. Fans would have disregarded the recently completed winless preseason because, really, what do four exhibition games mean? But when a coach has spent the previous six years insisting everything is swell even when it's not, people tend to withhold the benefit of the doubt. In fact, you'd need the Jaws of Life to extract the benefit of the doubt from many Bears fans."

OK then. As we've touched on a couple of times, I think much of the consternation is emanating from concern that the Bears will open the season with a home loss to the Detroit Lions, losers of 28 of their past 30 games. If that happens, Chicago's floodgates of negativity will truly be unleashed.

Continuing around the NFC North: