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Monday, January 25, 2010


GEAUX SAINTS! How awesome is it that the team of which I am a LIFE LONG fan, and have ALWAYS rooted for without exception, is going to the Superbowl! You're going down Manning! This won't be like your last Superbowl, when you trounced the Bears, that team to which I have no emotional connection whatsoever. GEAUX SAINTS!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The 2009 Bears- The Bad

Well, I was going to do a player by player breakdown of the bad players from the Bears this year before moving onto the coaching staff, but with the latest coaching changes, that's worth more of a discussion, so here's briefly a list of players on this team who suck ass and should probably die:

-Orlando Pace
-Frank Omiyale
-Olin Kreutz' rotten corpse.
-Greg Olsen (most of the time)
-Tommie Harris
-Nathan Vasher
-Danieal Manning
-Zack Fucking Bowman
-Al Afalava
-Kevin Payne
-The three-headed linebacker monster of suck (Hillenmeyer/Williams/Roach)
-Pretty much anyone else on the roster besides the ones I explicitly named yesterday.

Moving on-

The Bears fired 6 coaches yesterday. Let's look at each one-

-Ron Turner, Offensive Coordinator: Anyone that reads this site will know how fervently I defended Turner before this season. His system is not a bad system, and I don't believe he himself is a particularly bad coordinator. He's not particularly good either. He's certainly not innovative. Any moron could look at the offense this year and trace every problem back to the offensive line. Turner isn't responsible for putting that together. But he Is responsible for gameplanning around that, at least somewhat. He didn't. The continued insistence on "establishing the run" over the first half of the season cost this team dearly, as did his utter refusal (until After the team had been eliminated from contention) to roll Cutler out and utilize his mobility in order to buy time to pass. His wide receiver screens, while not as pointless as those used by Crowton, Shoop, or Shea, still sucked. I won't miss him, but he doesn't deserve 100% of the blame, either.

-Harry Hiestand, Offensive Line Coach: This is completely deserved. Name one offensive lineman the Bears have developed effectively during Hiestand's tenure. The only time the line was effective was during the 05 and 06 seasons, when a veteran heavy lineup really didn't Need coaching.

-Pep Hamilton, Quarterbacks Coach: Thank god. Can you name any three quarterbacks with more easily fixable mechanical and technical issues than Rex Grossman, Kyle Orton, and Jay Cutler? Can you name anything Hamilton did to fix Any of those issues?

-Rob Boras, Tight Ends Coach: Can I blame him for my hatred of Greg Olsen? It's not this guy's fault that Olsen drops everything and can't block, is it? If it is, he should probably just kill himself.

And assistants Luke Butkus and Charles London: Other than pissing the meatheads off by firing Dick Butkus' kid, I don't think this will have any effect.

Now, I agree with all of those firings. My problem that list is that it fails to include many of the people who needed to be fired the most, namely, the defensive staff and Lovie's cronies.

I understand that it was a pipe dream to hope that Lovie would be fired, especially after they won the last two games of the season. You'd think in a normal organization three playoff-less seasons would have a bigger impact than two games that allowed a team to finish 7-9, but hey, this is the Bears we're talking about. The fact, however, is that Lovie needs to have the circle of yes men that surrounds him removed. For God's sake, Bob Babich still has a fucking job. The rumors stating that Lovie had decided to make Marinelli the defensive coordinator are fortunately untrue, but that still won't change much.

With Babich and Marinelli and his fellow Cover 2 loyalists in place, the defensive coordinator that Lovie hires (probably Perry Fewell) will be surrounded and outnumbered, if he even wishes to change things. It doesn't matter who calls the defensive plays for this team. The scheme is broken. Tommie Harris is worthless. The front four has been mostly ineffective and wildly inconsistent for three straight years. The safeties all suck, and the corners can't keep up with anybody. The defense and the defensive coaching staff needs a complete overhaul, and Lovie needs to be stripped of as much of his authority as possible. That's not happening, so this team's fucked for at least one more year.

With some actual improvements on the offensive line (which won't be forthcoming if Angelo just signs this year's Orlando Pace or Omiyale on the market) and an offensive coordinator that tailors the offense to fit Cutler's strengths (like Jeremy Bates, the former Denver QB coach and current USC offensive coordinator that Cutler is supposedly lobbying for), this team can make marginal improvements and perhaps be in playoff contention next year, but if nothing changes on the defensive side of the ball the odds of winning anything are greatly reduced. In short, give up hope. Just give it up. It's going to be another long fucking year.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The 2009 Bears- The Good

Not that any of you should care, given that we are all LIFELONG Saints fans (at least until they get eliminated, since they've now gone 1-3 as my favorite team), but it's time to say a few things about the 2009 Chicago Bears. I had thought about writing more about them during the last few weeks of the season, but as they were eliminated from contention before showing any flashes of competence, it seemed best to wait until the end to get the story right. So here we go:

The Good-
- Let's just start off with my textbook defense of Jay Cutler. Half of those picks weren't his fault. Half of them were. That's still too many god damned harebrained interceptions, but let's look at the positives of his season first:

Jay Cutler in 2009-

-27 touchdown passes. That's the third best single season effort behind Erik Kramer (29 in 1995) and Sid Luckman (28 in 1943).

-3,666 passing yards. That's easily the second best in Bears history, right after Kramer's 3,838 in 1995.

-229.1 passing yards per game. That's 2nd to, you guessed it, Kramer's 239.9 ypg in 1995.

-60.5 completion percentage. That's the 2nd highest in Bears history (minimum of 10 starts) after Jim Harbaugh in 1993 (and for what it's worth, Harbaugh that year had just 7 td passes and threw 230 fewer passes than Jay did this year).

-1st in passing completions (336) and attempts (555)

-His 76.8 career (minimum 10 starts) passer rating as a Bear is, sadly enough, the 4th best in Bears history behind Erik Kramer (80.7), Jim McMahon (80.4), and Steve Walsh (77.9).

- And last but not least, at least his 26 interceptions are only the 2nd most in Bears history, behind Sid Luckman's 31 in 1947. Just to show how much the game has changed, Luckman actually made the Pro Bowl that year.

The fact is, despite the picks, despite the god awful line that allowed him to get sacked 35 freaking times, despite the inexperienced wide receivers and the lame duck offensive coordinator (sorry Ron, but you let me down big time this year), Jay managed to have arguably the second best passing season in Bears history. That says more about the ineptitude of this franchise than it does about Jay, but in all honesty there Are positives to take away from his efforts this year. The line needs to be tweaked. He needs more time to set his feet, because when he does, he's nearly unstoppable. Jay needs to stop rushing throws and hearing footsteps. All of this is elementary stuff that's been said about him throughout his career, and it's been said about promising Bears qbs in the past (see Grossman, Rex). This is fixable. There's no reason to give up on Cutler or doubt the wisdom of trading for him.

Outside of the QB-

Matt Forte- he had a down year this year. Not all of it was his fault. He was hurt in the offseason and the offensive line was so far below competent that if competence was sunlight they'd be the mole people. Forte deserves some of the blame, however, for his indecisiveness. Hit the hole, son. It's not gonna last long with your blockers. However, he's the first Bears rookie to rack up 2,000+ yards rushing in his first two years since Walter Payton. He managed to rack up 1,400 total yards from scrimmage in a terrible, terrible year, giving him 3,115 total yards in his young career. He's the surest bet to bounce back on this team, even more so than Cutler.

Devin Hester- He showed some real flashes of potential, as he always does. Had he not missed all or parts of four of five games he may very well have gained 1,000 yards receiving. I'm not sure he's ever going to be the #1 receiver, but I don't mean that as a Morrissey-style derogatory comment. He's simply not as smart as Aromashadu or Knox and they've just developed faster than him. As a slot receiver, #2 receiver, and deep threat he's still an extremely valuable player to have, and he'll continue to progress with Cutler under center.

Johnny Knox- The Bears should never let anyone forget that they got Cutler AND Knox in the trade with the Broncos. Given Denver's late season collapse and Kyle Orton's so-so finish, any moran who still thinks the Bears "lost the trade" should probably choke on his own taint and die. Knox was outstanding as a returner and slot receiver. He and Hester may have combined to make more frustrating and absolutely idiotic mistakes than any two wideouts in history this year, and they often cost Cutler dearly, but they also accomplished more than enough to give fans the feeling that with Cutler, Forte, Hester, Knox, Aromashadu, and, to a lesser extent, Greg Fucking Olsen, this unit is but an offensive line and a coordinator away from being truly terrifying.

Devin Aromashadu- Yes, we all had a good laugh at the meatheads who demanded that he start during the offseason. But even the meatheads can latch onto something sometimes. It's really a scathing condemnation of the coach and the GM that they took so damn long to get him on the field. I look forward to seeing what he does next year when he's Not stuck on the practice squad.

Greg Olsen- I suppose I should say something good about him. 60 receptions, 612 yds, and 8 tds are all fine totals for a tight end, but damned if he didn't feel like a disappointment. I still don't really like him.

Lance Briggs- He weathered the storm pretty well without help from....anybody. It wasn't his best season, but it wasn't his worst, which would have been excusable under the circumstances.

Expect the coaching staff and the rest of the defense to show up on tomorrow's article discussing what went wrong this season. That's going to be a much longer article and I'm tired of writing for now.