Chat with Jeff Dickerson
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, ESPNChicago.com reporter Jeff Dickerson stops by to chat about the Chicago Bears.
Dickerson is a Bears beat reporter and weeknight host on ESPN 1000.
Send your questions now and join Dickerson Monday at 12:30 p.m. CT/1:30 p.m. ET!
Jeff Dickerson (1:30 PM)
Welcome. Lovie Smith just wrapped up. Let's talk about the 8-5 Bears.
Jeff, all teams have injuries. It is pretty clear based on our last two years in December that as the season progresses, teams make adjustments to beat Lovie's Cover 2 and our coaches do not match those adjustments. If the Bears miss the playoffs, do you think Lovie is gone or will he be given one more year?
Jeff Dickerson (1:31 PM)
I believe if the Bears miss the playoffs they will be forced to make a head coaching change. Can't miss the playoffs 5 of the last 6 years. How in the world could the Bears sell that to their fan base?
Jay [via mobile]
Do you see the Bears winning Sunday against the Packers?
Jeff Dickerson (1:32 PM)
No, I do not see that happening. But I could be wrong, obviously.
Bill Hambric (Ogden, Utah)
Is it time for a new defense? New young coaches are coming and winning or younger player are stronger or is it we just need to draft better?
Jeff Dickerson (1:33 PM)
I think it's time for the Bears to have an offense that can score some points. I know the defense is older, and that Adrian Peterson had a huge 1st quarter yesterday, but I put that loss dead on the offense. Score some points!!!
Johnny Blaze (SOUTHSIDE)
Why was Armando Allen on the field for 3rd and 1 in the 2nd half? Isn't that what michael bush was signed for?
Jeff Dickerson (1:34 PM)
Michael Bush re-injured his ribs on the toss play towards the Bears' sideline. That is why he only got 2 snaps the entire game.
Adam, Ia [via mobile]
Will Cutler be available to play on Sunday?
Jeff Dickerson (1:35 PM)
I think Cutler will play.
JD-How did James Brown play yesterday?
Jeff Dickerson (1:36 PM)
Lovie Smith just told us he thought Brown did some good things. Brown got 42 snaps, so he actually played more than Edwin Williams (36). But the mere fact an undrafted rookie who began the year on the practice squad had to play yesterday, just shows you how bad the offensive line is.
I know Lovie has to be positive but his statements after these last few losses are ridiculous. I have appreciated his time here but I think he has to go if/when they dont make the postseason.
Jeff Dickerson (1:37 PM)
In fairness to Lovie, what is he supposed to say? He needs to keep the team playing for him so he can't exactly rip them in public. His comments don't bother me. His offense does.
Has any consideration been given to moving Tice upstairs during the games. I don't see any advantage to having him on the sidelines. The play calling during the last several games seems to be a problem.
Jeff Dickerson (1:38 PM)
Tice also coaches up the offensive line during the game, so he needs to be on the field for that to happen. Not sure if moving Tice upstairs would help the situation.
Hank (Drving back from Minny)
Bill Belichek said that it is better to get rid of a player a year to soon then to keep them a year later then you should. How many years ago should we have gotten rid of Devin Hester?
Jeff Dickerson (1:39 PM)
The trade value for Hester last year was around a 4th round pick. Safe to say the Bears probably wish they pulled the trigger. Not sure what the market holds for Hester this upcoming offseason. Maybe a 5th or 6th?
Josh, Minneapolis [via mobile]
Being a Bears fan living in Minneapolis there's nothing more than pains me than knowing Mike Tice is still the offensive coordinator for the Bears. Yesterday, his game plan was clearly to beat the Vikings by the air with Cutler attempting a season high 44 passing attempts completing only half of them. Meanwhile, Forte was averaged 6.5 yards per carry (2nd highest of the season) on only 13 touches. I know I'm on the smartest guy in MN but why did Tice feel the passing game was the way to win. Going into the game the Vikings were ranked 16th passing and 13th in rushing. I mean Forte showed the Vikings were vulnerable with a couple breakaways and he only used Bush once for 6 yards! Run the ball! We've lost 4 of the last 5 and I'm putting 2 of the losses directly on Mike Tice and his poor play calling. Thoughts? How much longer do you think Tice has with the Bears the organization? The Ravens dismissed offensive coordinator Cam Cameron this morning. Please tell me the Bears will do the same with Tice.
Jeff Dickerson (1:41 PM)
Josh, I think if the Bears miss the playoffs there will be an entirely new coaching staff here next year. Tice will land a good job coaching an offensive line somewhere, and that will be it.
Maybe this is me just looking to place blame every week, but seriously, why is Kellen Davis still a starter? And WHY does Cutler continue to throw his way? Good throws go dropped, and he doesn't even go after the bad throws. He's big, but I know he has more than a 2 inch vertical. Go get the ball!
Jeff Dickerson (1:43 PM)
Good question, Pat. The Bears must feel they have no other legitmate option behind Davis to justify a change. I disagree, and here's why: it's not as if Davis can catch, so start Matt Spaeth. At least the blocking will be a lot better and you'll have a player giving you maximum effort on every play. That's what I would do.
Tice is in over his head. What are the chances he comes back next year as the offensive coordinator?
Jeff Dickerson (1:44 PM)
Not looking great.
I'm sick of hearing so many bears fans discuss next year/offseason plans when this team is still 8-5 and has a good chance of making the playoffs. Sure, we haven't played well recently and the injuries are piling up. But why does everyone assume if we do make it that we'll be one and done? That's why you play the games right? Playoffs are a new season. This team is still talented.
Jeff Dickerson (1:47 PM)
True, it's not over until it's over. But the Bears have beat Green Bay one time since 2009. The Packers have a shot to wrap up the division next week. Then, the Bears have two road games to finish up the year, where anything can happen. 10 wins usually gets you in. 9 wins sometimes does not. Can the Bears win 2 of the next 3? Will they be able to recover if the Packers come to town and kick their teeth in on Sunday? Who knows. But the prospects really don't sound all that promising, that's why people feel as if the season might be over.
Chris See (Chicago, IL)
This may sound like a joke but it's a serious question-- do you think the Bears players are afraid of the Packers? Do you think they get nervous and scared before they play them? They just have such a terrible record against them over the past few years, especially in big games like this. I mean, there isn't a single person in this city who actually thinks the Bears are going to win on Sunday, which is pathetic considering its a must win at home.
Jeff Dickerson (1:49 PM)
I think the Bears know they can't beat the Packers and it drives them crazy. But I don't feel like the Bears are afraid of Green Bay.
Philipchicagosportsfan (Corona, CA)
I know Jeffrey dropped a big pass yesterday, but is he entirely healthy? Some people say it takes more than two weeks to come back from his procedure?
Jeff Dickerson (1:50 PM)
He felt good enough to play 57 snaps. I don't think he was hurt, I just think Jeffery was rusty from missing so much time this season.
Kevin (Joliet, IL)
Do you think Cutler misses Olsen? Seems like Olsen would be making catches that for some reason Davis can't make.
Jeff Dickerson (1:51 PM)
Yes. I think Cutler misses having a player like Olsen that can catch the ball from the tight end spot.
What is it about Jay Cutlers spiral that makes his receivers drop it? You mean to tell me Devin Hester has bad hands?
Jeff Dickerson (1:52 PM)
That was one of the worst drops I've ever seen. At least Earl Bennett was concussed vs. Seattle when he dropped the ball down the fied. Hester has no excuse. Bad.
What do you think the chances Chicago cleans house on some of its veteran players such as Urlacher, Peppers and Briggs for younger players at them positions?
Jeff Dickerson (1:53 PM)
If a new head is hired, there will be roster turnover. I don't think Urlacher would be interested in a rebuilding process. But I'd keep Briggs and maybe see if Peppers can renegotiate his contract.
Jacob (Las Vegas)
Why is the coaching staff consistently running Devin Hester out on the field as a wide out? Do we not have any other viable option on the team?
Jeff Dickerson (1:54 PM)
Must not. Hester lined up for 54 plays at wide receiver yesterday, about 44 too many.
Christopher (Mesa, AZ)
The Bears need to revamp the offensive line, get a semi quality tight end some additional talent at wide receiver and start to replace an aging defense. Are you confident that Emery will have a plan to address all of this with Lovie at the helm. Lovie's track record is not that great in building a great offense.
Jeff Dickerson (1:58 PM)
Christopher, I agree with everything you wrote. The Bears need to upgrade the offensive line, get a new starting TE and get another WR because Jeffery and Bennett have a hard time staying healthy, plus get some help at LB, etc. But I don't think Emery's plan has anything to do with Lovie Smith. Regardless of who the head coach is, I'm pretty sure Emery also sees these issues and will do his best to address them in free agency or the draft.
I know there's still "a lot of football left to play" as Lovie likes to say, but if the Bears fire him after this season, who would you see as candidates to replace him?
Jeff Dickerson (1:59 PM)
I really don't know. Mike Zimmer?
Is Forte and Bush back at 100%? Why did they not run the ball yesterday?
Jeff Dickerson (2:00 PM)
Bush was not 100%. Forte is, or at least close to 100%. Lovie said Bears passed the ball more because they got down 14-0.
Positive signs out of Alshon yesterday, no? He looks like he could provide a semi-credible threat opposite Marshall.
Jeff Dickerson (2:01 PM)
Agreed. Bad drop, but he's a talent. He just needs to stay healthy, that's been Jeffery's biggest problem.
Jeff Dickerson (2:01 PM)
Thank you everybody. Have a great week.
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