Sunday, November 28, 2010

Bears 31, Eagles 26- ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?

Don't let the final score deceive you. Classic Lovie Prevent defense aside, this was a total asskicking of the team that NFL Network was describing as "this year's Saints." What excuse will they find to dismiss the Bears this week? You're looking at a damn good football team, folks, and I don't care who disagrees.

Onto the breakdown:

THE GOOD:

Jay Cutler: 14/21 (66.7%) for 247 yards, 4 TDS, 0 INTS, a 146.2 rating and one absolutely bullshit unsportsmanlike call where I was only too pleased to see him give the ref the asschewing he deserved. Cutler had undoubtedly his best game as a Bear and maybe as a pro. He threw in 17 yards rushing for good measure. In a game that was supposed to be about Michael Vick, Jay Cutler stole the day and didn't give it back.

Matt Forte: 14 carries for a 117 yards. He was outstanding and was a huge part of the clock-killing 3rd quarter drives that essentially sealed the game for the Bears. That a boy, Matty.

Johnny Knox: 3 catches, 68 yards and a TD to go with the recovery on the last onside kick.

Earl Mother Fuckin' Bennett: The best damn slot receiver the Bears have had in a long god damn time. He had four huge catches and two TDs. Shirtless manhug for you, Earl.

Devin Hester: He had 3 catches for 86 yards, both of which set up scores. He's learning how to come back to the ball when Jay has to scramble, and he clearly influenced the Eagles' gameplan on punts and kicks. Great job. Best game the wide receiver corps had all year.

Greg Olsen: He had only one catch, but it was the most impressive TD catch of his career.

The Front Seven: Urlacher, Briggs, and every single defensive lineman on the field had a huge game. Vick's final numbers look good, but for 3 quarters before Lovie unwisely eased up these guys forced Vick into his worst game of the year. Julius Peppers had one absolutely beastly sack in the first half to end an Eagles threat in the red zone. Idonijie, Melton, and Toeina continued to dominate the interior and even Tommie Harris got into the action with a huge tip that led to the game-changing interception. Boners.

The Bad:

Frank Omiyale: Guh. 3 of Cutler's 4 sacks should be credited to Omiyale, and he did his part as usual to ensure the Bears kept the league lead in false starts. Fuck you, Frank.

Lovie Smith: The gameplan was brilliant until the 4th quarter. I don't blame him for the last TD that was just plain miraculous, but the prevent defense with 11 minutes left in the 4th? He's lucky Andy Reid was determined to lose this game and kicked 2 nonsensical field goals, because the Bend but Don't Break came way too damn close.

Andy Reid: seriously, man. How does someone as dumb as you build such a consistently good football team?

Rick Morrissey: What aren't you impressed with this week, fuckhead?

Circus Trip Retrospect

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The Bulls just wrapped up the annual "circus trip", a 7 game road trip that takes place while the circus takes over the United Center, by coming back (again) to beat the Kings 96-85, leaving them with a 4-3 record on the trip (their first winning record on the thing since before you had the internet). Some seriously crazy shit happened on the trip, so let's recap with some quick Bull/Bears for each game.

Bulls 95 - Houston 92
-Bull: Nice start to the trip. The Bulls really needed to start strong against a bad Rockets team. Rose dropped 33 points before that became routine for him and the Bulls extended the Rockets' losing streak to 4.
-Bear: The Bulls got dominated in the 3rd quarter (30-14), their quarter of choice to get dominated in up until the last 3 games. Still, a nice win.

Spurs 103 - Bulls 94
-Bull: Rose dropped another 33 points, Noah grabbed 14 rebounds, and the Bulls looked great against one of the best teams in the west for a half.
-Bear: Once again, the Bulls got dominated in the 3rd quarter, 37-12 this time, and despite Derrick's 33 points he only has 4 assists and appears to be trying to do too much on the floor at times. However, this was the second game on the road in as many games, and it was against a great team.

Bulls 88 - Mavericks 83
-Bull: Rose drops 22, Taj Gibson is the star of the night with 17 points and 18 rebounds.
-Bear: To be honest this game was awful to watch. Both teams deserved to be put away, but nobody stepped up. The Bulls practically won by default. They tried to blow it in the third quarter AGAIN, with the quarter starting out 20-4 in favor of the Mavericks, but finished the third on a 13-4 run to make it more respectable. 18 turnovers for the Bulls... the list goes on. Beating the Mavericks is a great accomplishment, but make no mistake, neither team can afford to play like they did in this game and win a title.

Lakers 98 - Bulls 91
-Bull: The Bulls avoided the bad quarter and hung with the champs the whole game, the only thing that stood between them and victory was a barrage of Laker 3 pointers in the 4th that gave them 9 points in under 40 seconds. Rose hit 30 again and also managed 8 assists, Noah grabbed 13 rebounds and 4 steals, and the Bulls held Kobe to 20 points.
-Bear: The loss, and that's really it. It's ironic that they looked so bad in getting a win over Dallas and looked so great in losing to the Lakers.

Bulls 123 - Suns 115 (2OT)
(Look under this post)

Nuggets 98 - Bulls 97
-Bull: What a heartbreaker. C.J. Watson timed his 1 great game of the year perfectly (33 points), overcome shooting below 40% and not having Derrick for the night, and avoid a bad quarter for the 3rd time in 4 games... and screw it all up at the very end. Great night for Noah and Korver as well, and the bench showed how good it can be. Tough to take this one.
-Bear: John Lucas 3 missed two free throws to leave the Bulls with a 1 point lead with 13 seconds left. Then Melo misses a shot to win the game! There are 3 Bulls right there to rebound! Game ov... and the three Bulls knock the ball out of bounds, setting up Melo to hit the game winner as time expired. My heart hurts.

Bulls 96 - Kings 85
-Bull: Rose drops another 30, this time with 7 assists and 7 rebounds to go with it and the Bulls overcome a 13 point halftime deficit to beat a terrible Kings team. Not too remarkable.
-Bear: The Bulls were the first team to be losing to the Kings at halftime this year. That is how bad the Kings are, and the Bulls were down 13. Derrick once again picked it up in the fourth, but it has to be a bit concerning that the Bulls ended this trip by coming back from way down the last 3 games.



Overall, a great trip. The Bulls are currently 9-6 and are going to get even better soon with Boozer practicing tomorrow and hopefully returning Wednesday. More later, mostly about my inability to find Keith Bogans on the court (invisibility cloak?!) and musings about Thibodeau and of course the Heat (Shadenfreude!).