Can One Game Derail a Season?

Matt Bowen at the Chicago Tribune writes about recovering from a bad loss like that the Bears endured on Sunday:

“I have never been a believer that one game can derail a season. Get through training camp, the first three months of the season and then fold after a bad loss in December? It shouldn’t happen, but it can if the proper adjustments aren’t made and these corrections stemming from Sunday aren’t treated with importance.”

I don’t have much doubt that this is true, particularly coming from an ex-NFL player.  But there is a danger here.

Certainly as long as you see the film and you recognize that you made mistakes, you know that you can correct them.

But what if you are D.J. Moore or Tim Jennings, who were both tabbed with covering Wes Welker one-on-one and got ruined?  What do these guys do when they get totally out classed not because of poor technique but because the other guy was just better?  What if you are their teammates and you are thinking the same thing?  What if you look at the tape and you think, “Man, our coaches got thoroughly played.  And they’ll never be good enough to keep up with these guys”?

Everyone from the front office down to the average fan knows that there’s only so much you can do to compensate for a lack of ability.  That’s how you get a loss of confidence.  That’s how one game can derail a season.

I’m not saying this is going to happen.  But if enough players saw these kind of things enough on tape, the Bears are going to have a long remaining three games.

It’s all about confidence.  It’s all about improvement.  Perhaps most importantly, its all about faith.  Faith in your coaches.  Faith in your teammates.  Faith in yourself.  Here’s hoping this team has enough of it.

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