Over the last several months, I’ve been converting the 2004 Chicago Bears season from VHS to DVD, which requires me to watch most of the games to some degree. I’ve just started on the 2005 season. I can see such a difference between those early Lovie Smith Bears defenses and the versions we’re seeing in 2007 and 2008. I’d like to comment on those.
Which I will do another day soon, not on the day I commute to my office at 3:30 a.m.
For today, I’d like to give my prediction on what’s going to happen over the final 4 weeks of the Bears’ season. What do I want to happen? I want the Bears to go 4-0 over the final 4 weeks of the season, fueled by an emotional resurgence, then storm through the divisional and championship rounds of the playoffs on the road. Just like the 2007 Giants, after they had been written off by everyone after the regular season.
I realize there are those that stop by here and have ripped me in the past, indicating I’m not a fan if I don’t think the Bears will go 18-0 every season. That’s fine. They’ll rip me again because I don’t think the 2008 Chicago Bears will make like the 2007 New York Giants. As I’ve said before, that’s the position I put myself in by writing a blog.
I don’t think the Bears will pull an ’07 Giants because that team became hungry to win once the playoffs began, pulling off three upsets on the road and arguably the biggest Super Bowl upset of all time. To me, the 2008 Bears are looking more and more like they’re overpaid and just don’t care about winning more than protecting the final years of their fat contracts. I think guys like Matt Forte and Kyle Orton are hungry. I think Olin Kreutz will always be hungry as long as he plays. But Charles Tillman, Brian Urlacher, Mike Brown, Tommie Harris, Adewale Ogunleye in particular look to me like they entered into “past their prime” stage in 2008, or they’ve lost some of their fire. As far as FS Kevin Payne, I hear some of the media rave about him, but mixed in with his big hits are lapses in judgement or missed tackles.
Best-case scenario to me, the key is beating Jacksonville this Sunday, believe it or not. If the Bears do beat the Jaguars, they will face must-win’s against New Orleans AND Green Bay, then another must-win at Houston to keep pace. I do believe the Vikings will lose 2 more games before the season is over, but that will be for naught unless the Bears win at least 3 of the 4 and Green Bay loses at least 1 of their 4.
My fear is, if the Bears collapse against Jacksonville, based on what I’ve seen from a lot of these players, they will just throw in the towel on the rest of the season, finishing 6-10. If that happens, my original prediction of 7-9 will seem generous.
I would like nothing more for people to be able to tell me how wrong I was if the Bears go 4-0, host a winning playoff game, and go on a tear in the playoffs. But if someone tells me they seriously have seen evidence this season that would make them honestly conclude that is likely, they’re kidding themselves.