What a fitting way to lose a game in every area. I rarely, rarely leave a Bears game early–something told me to stay at both miracle finishes in 2001 and I did. But with the Bears losing 27-17 with two minutes remaining yesterday, I did bail because I was disgusted.
Just this morning I am seeing the video of the amazing punt return play resulting in a touchdown for Johnny Knox that was called back on a stupid penalty. I have to say that is amazing, how could the entire Packers team follow Devin Hester and not the ball? So that is why we heard the stadium roar as I was half a mile away.
But regardless it was a loss, and the Bears were simply out-classed by the Packers in every area. Part of me thinks the game wasn’t as close as the score indicated, but in other ways it seems as the loss wasn’t as bad as the score indicated. But a loss, especially at home to the Packers, is a loss.
At the start of the season, I agreed with Dan Pompei of the Tribune that the Bears may be a better team in 2011 but finish with a worse record than 2010. Prior to opening day I even wrote that I had a sinking feeling that this season might start of like 1992, with a rousing win opening day, followed by losses in New Orleans and to Green Bay that might take the air out of the Bears sails.
Then after the Bears’ dominating win over the Falcons I convinced myself that I was wrong-that the Bears must be a team hungry to prove people like me wrong. They were going to start 3-0 and shock everyone, with enough gas left in the tank to make at least one more strong run in 2011. Looks like that feeling I started getting in the week before the New Orleans loss was completely wrong.
I won’t analyze the latest loss to the Packers too much here. The stats speak for themselves-Chicago’s worst rushing performance in at least 50 years. Horrible dropped passes, our franchise quarterback off the mark much of the time, stupid penalties. All this happening while our arch-rival Super Bowl champs continue to look like the class of the NFL. Not much more to say there.
What is sobering to this Bears fan is to start having to consider what the future holds for this team while the Packers look to be armed to the tooth and continuing to get stronger.
The Bears defense would be good enough to win some games for the team in 2011 as long as the offense could do its fair share. But at this point it looks like that won’t happen. And the cornerstone of the defense, Brian Urlacher, won’t be around after a couple more seasons, so defensively the window is closing.
On offense, the only franchise quarterback the team has had in my 32 seasons watching the team may not be the answer. Not due to his physical skills, but the recurring, continuing problems with his accuracy and leadership. On drive after failed drive Jay Cutler looked frustrated and mentally finished. When the Bears traded for Cutler I was brainwashed by his physical skills-skills no Bears quarterback has possessed in decades. This caused me to ignore the rumblings coming out of Denver about his true ability to win. I’m starting to see this and question whether he’s ever going to be the answer.
I’m also now getting convinced that the Bears’ receivers are indeed a joke-Roy Williams looks completely incapable or uninterested in being an NFL receiver.
So in summary, things aren’t looking good for the 2011 Chicago Bears. With the 3-0 Packers looking like they are unmatched in the conference and the 3-0 Detroit Lions looking like they’re for real, my hopes are not high.