Bears are currently in meetings at Halas Hall. Can't wait to discuss Sunday's 23-20 overtime loss to the Vikings. Have to say; that was one of the worst defeats I've ever covered in my 9 years on the beat.
Was the Bears' late-game strategy and field goal attempt the definition of playing not to lose rather than playing to win the game?
That's an excellent way to sum up the end of regulation/overtime, Jim. Marc Trestman is generally an aggressive head coach, but he tends to go into this conservative mode in short-yardage/goal line situations, and at the end of halves/games. The strength of the 2013 Chicago Bears is their offense. Can we all agree on that? That's why Trestman was brought here. So why in the world did the Bears not trust their offense (the strength of the team) to pick up an extra couple of yards on 2nd down to give Robbie Gould a shorter kick? I'm confused.
I was not able to focus on Jerimiah Ratliff during the game... how would you rate his debut? Any promise there?
Ratliff played 23 snaps on Sunday. He was credited with 1 tackle in the official NFL stat book but applied pressure on a couple other plays. I would assume that Ratliff will play more snaps versus Dallas next Monday. The Bears are easing him back in after he missed an entire year.
What's the biggest need to fill in the offseason for the Bears? Players or coaching staff and which positions?
Jeff: Do you think Coach Trestman is in over his head? He was so successful up here but he has made some questionable calls so far. Too cerebral maybe?
Dave, I wouldn't say that Trestman is in over his head. But his game-managment has been highly suspect this year. All the Bears can do is hope Trestman learns from his mistakes.
Jeff, love your work! Honestly, how do you feel about Mel Tucker? Is there any justifiable reason to keep Mel Tucker for 2014 other than injuries? He was yelling at his defense all day, but us Bears fans feel like yelling at him all season long! He was brought into run his own system, but I do not know what kind of system he wants to employ and run when he is still running outdated Cover 2 defense all the time and lack adjustments during the game is appauling. Makes him look like someone who lacks vision, philosophy and even worse, lazy.
I felt Tucker and the rest of his coaches devised a decent game plan to stop Minnesota. They stacked the box the entire game, and I felt for the most part, Craig Steltz did a really nice job supporting the run. But the Bears tackled poorly, and there you have it: Peterson rushes for 211 yards and the Bears lose. While I've been highly suspect of Tucker (can you blame me considering how poorly the Bears have played on defense this year), I felt that loss yesterday was more on the players. My sense is the players are split on Tucker. Some really like and respect him; others aren't entirely sold. But I do expect he will return in 2014. Let's see how the Bears perform next year on defense with, hopefully, better health and a possible change in scheme. I don't believe that Tucker is lazy or lacks vision, but this is a results driven business. If the Bears continue to struggle on defense, Tucker's job status will continue to be called into question. That's life in the NFL.
When is Lance Briggs coming back?
In a perfect world; Briggs returns to face the Cowboys next Monday. I don't think you can rule that out. But Briggs needs to practice a couple days before he can play on Monday night.
How could we not contract Richard Seymour for the year?????Veteran pro-bowler who could raise a ruckus in our opponent's backfield. Penny wise - Pound foolish?
Bears didn't have the cap space. Seymour wanted too much money. And there was no guarantee he would be motivated. Seymour seems to enjoy being retired.
I appreciate what McCown has done over the past few weeks, but people need to stop saying he should replace Cutler. Over the last few weeks, the offense has averaged 19 pts/gm. Wouldn't you agree that McCown is a quality backup and nothing more?
If Cutler is medically cleared to play, he is the starter. That's not really up for debate in the mind of the Bears. But I do appreciate what McCown has accomplished this year. He is definitly a quality backup, but a backup that can also win you some games in this system. Those guys are hard to find.
How good can Alshon be? Also, any chance we start to see some Marquise Wilson down the stretch and less Earl Bennet?
Alshon Jeffery can be a Pro Bowl, No. 1 NFL wide receiver. Earl Bennett had 42 snaps vs. Minnesota; Wilson got just 5. However, I do think the Bears will consider giving Wilson more playing time if the team officially falls out of it in the next couple weeks.
Omg.... Is Michael Bush still on the roster? 3rd and 1 yard to go with 3 minutes left in regulation. This is Michael Bush time! Forte is NOT a short yardage back. Another terrible coaching move by Mr. Trestman. Bush would have moved the chains, Bears run out the clock, kick another SHORT field goal and Bears win in regulation!! I actually think Lovie Smith would have inserted Bush on 3rd and 1.
Bush actually looked good on his one carry yesterday that went for 15 yards. Go figure. But going into Sunday, Bush had gained a grand total of zero yards on his previous 11 carries. So I don't think it was a guarantee that Bush was moving the chains in that situation.
Have the Bears ever had two 1,000 yard receivers in the same season?
The great duo of Curtis Conway and Jeff Graham accomplished that feat in 1995.
Jeff: Do you feel that if Cutler comes back against Dallas, that will provide any kind of upgrade over how McCown has played recently? I feel like the offense has been doing about as well as it can on the field and almost all the issues have been on the coaching side.
Cutler has the ability, because of his arm, to hit the big play down the field and score points in a hurry. To McCown's credit, he did connect with Jeffery for those two long touchdowns yesterday, but that's really not his style. So if the Cowboys light up the Bears' defense, which certainly could happen, the Bears are going to need all the points they can get. But it will be interesting to see how well Cutler protects the football whenever he returns. Throwing for 3 touchdowns in a game is great, but when you also turn it over twice, it tends to even out.
Is the Chicago media going to hold Trestman' feet to the fire about his dumb decisions?
What should we do? Rush the podium? I'm kidding, Jeff. Trestman will be asked about it when he meets the media around 1:30 p.m. BST (Bears Standard Time)....which could mean 2:15 p.m. CST.
Thank you everybody. The Bears just opened the locker room. We'll see what everyone has to say about the Vikings' loss. Enjoy the rest of your week.