The Bears dominated the Titans in all three phases, with two phases showing up from the start and the offense kicking it in sometime around the start of the second quarter. From the very first play for the Titans, when Matt Hasselbeck fired a perfect throw to Kenny Britt only for Charles Tillman to pop it for an immediately-deflating fumble, things were clearly going to go the Bears way. In the end they got 37 points from the offense, 7 from the defense, and 7 from special teams, to go along with 358 yards on offense, a 229 yards, 3 TD, 138 rating day for Jay Cutler, 100+ yard efforts from Forte and Marshall, the startling return of the real Brian Urlacher, and Charles Tillman just doing that thing that leaves opposing ball-carriers double clutching the football and dropping to the ground whenever his fists come near.
The Bears finished with 51 points, their most since 1981. They had the most points they've ever scored in a first quarter, 28, and they're now 7-1 at the halfway point for the first time since they last went to a Superbowl. We supposedly have to wait one more week to find out whether we have a good team in Chicago, but I've already made up my mind regardless.
To the specifics:
-Brian Urlacher: He's certainly not what he used to be, but it was comforting to see him rack up tackles and make a great break on the ball to get the interception. I sure as hell enjoyed watching him shove Matt Hasselbeck out of the way like a minor nuisance. Someday, maybe as soon as next season, Brian Urlacher won't be a Bear, and I will be sad because of that.
-Corey Wootton and Nate Collins: Wootton's been stellar all year in reserve, but he got a chance to shine today with a blocked punt return TD and a sack to add to his growing list of great plays. Nate Collins justified his spot on the active roster for the second week in a row with a a pass deflection and three tackles. This defensive line's depth is utterly terrifying. In a good way.
-Sherrick McManis: blocked a punt, reminded me that he was on the roster.
-Charles Tillman: The man forced four fumbles today. FOUR. Jesus. He's just on another level right now. For a guy who was always better than he's been given credit for, Tillman's surpassed his own previous bests this year.
-Jay Cutler: He was patient when he needed to be, he took his shots when the opportunity opened up, the sack-fumble, unlike last week, was not his fault since he got killed before he even had a chance to go to his second read, and all three of his touchdown passes were a combination of arm strength, improvisation, and great accuracy. The second one, in particular, was placed right over the corner and safety where only Marshall could make the play. He finished 19/26 for 229 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, and a 138.1 rating, and his passer rating on the season is now back to a respectable 85.3. If he can keep making chickensalad out of this chickenshit offensive line, good things are in the forecast.
-Brandon Marshall: Noted SKO fan RV noted on twitter that Marshall's stats for half a season this year (797 yards, 7 TDs) would both have led the team for an entire year in 6 of the last 9 seasons. Real receivers are awesome. Hopefully Alshon will be back soon, so Marshall can stop carrying this entire offense on his back.
-Gabe Carimi: the "he's still young" excuse only works if he gradually gets better, not worse. He is, as Iggins! put it, a dumpster fire at right tackle right now. Webb had a hold and the illegal hands to the face that led to the safety, but he wasn't terrible otherwise, but Gabe is just a disaster and it's holding the entire offense back. Mike Tice had better have a damn good plan for keeping Cutler upright against Houston.
-Mike Tice: Just stop getting fucking cute. Oh, look! The Hester reverse when you're up 31-2. HahahahFuck you. Empty backfield on 2nd and 1 in the red zone? Brilliant! Your offensive line is always stellar when you broadcast "WE ARE PASSING" to the opposing D! Just stop it. Run the ball till they load the box, then play-action.
Brian Billick: Okay. We fucking get it. The Bears are feasting on easy first-half schedule. Get over it. It'd be one thing if they were just scraping by, but other than the Carolina game their average margin of victory over these patsies is 23 points. They're dominating the weak half of their schedule. We don't know HOW great they are yet, but we can at least say they are good without immediately having to dredge up a "but...".
That's it for now. The Bears have done all that we could possibly have hoped for in the first half of the season. The long haul begins next week, but have faith. This team is capable of doing great things. It's doing them right now.