Game Comments: Packers Vs.Bears, 9/25/11


  1. The Bears played mostly in standard cover two defense. They did occasionally blitz from various directions.  All in all its a game plan that generally works well against the Packers at home.
  2. The Packers responded by trying to be patient with short passes.  Generally a good game plan against the Bear defense.
  3. Given 1 and 2, I was a little disappointed that the Packers completed as many deepish passes as they did.  They weren’t necessarily bombs but they were making big chunks of yards fast.
  4. Welcome back Henry Melton.  Nice game.
  5. Aaron Rogers is so good at that hard count that he apparently can’t keep his own men on sides.
  6. The Packers ran far too well against the Bears defense.
  7. The Packers found a mismatch with Lance Briggs covering Jermichael Finley late in the third quarter and early in the fourth.  They did a nice job of taking advantage.
  8. The Bears have to rush Rogers with more discipline.  He rolls out of the pocket and buys far too much time.


  1. The interception by Morgan Burnett was on a ball just thrown too far inside.  Throw it to the outside and that’s a catch for a lot of yards.
  2. The Bears inability to run the ball really hurt them this game.  I know they didn’t call many but they couldn’t get any yards that way, either.  The Packers were determined to make the Bears beat them through the air and they were able to do it.
  3. The Bears max protected Cutler pretty much all game.
  4. The Packers plan to combat this was interesting.  They spent much of the first half in a zone defense rushing three or four.   That’s in stark contrast to what they usually do which is play ferocious man-to-man defense.  Personally I thought this was a gift that the Bears, unfortunately, weren’t able to execute well enough to take advantage of.  They really should have moved the ball better today.
  5. Jay Cutler is down right gun shy.  Despite the fact that the Bears were in max protect and generally were keeping the pocket clean, all he had to do was see blitz and he was throwing off of his back foot.  Someone needs to talk to him and tell him that he can’t react like this.
  6. Probably related to 5, Cutler’s accuracy was pretty bad today.  It didn’t help that no one on the field was able to consistently catch a pass when he did throw it well.
  7. Johnny Knox has to stop complaining about close interference calls and he has to start catching the ball.  You don’t see the Packer receivers complaining because someone slapped their arm or hand.  They get tough and concentrate and catch the ball anyway.  Maybe receivers coach Darryl Drake should worry about telling that to Knox instead of worrying about telling reporters what separation is in the NFL.


  1. As usual Troy Aikman and Joe Buck were pretty good.  As usual they made a lot good points and they didn’t miss much.  Generally speaking I thought they were kind to the Bears this week (and it was much appreciated, at least by this blogger, because the game was otherwise quite frustrating).
  2. This was a unbelievably sloppy game penalty-wise.  It was bad on both sides and I think I’d be more upset if I were a Packer fan.  As noted above, Aaron Rogers’ hard count seemed to catch his own linemen more often than it did the Bears.
  3. Apparently the Park District is renting Soldier Field out as junk yard when the Bears aren’t playing now.  I don’t know what that was sticking out of the ground but if I’m the NFL, I’m really thinking about fining the Bears for it.
  4. The drops wee a travesty.  Cutler was inconsistent but the receivers made it far, far worse.  Some of those passes just don’t get any better.
  5. I was glad to see the Bears get two turnovers, something they’ve had a hard time doing.
  6. We’ve come to expect a lot out of Bears special teams.  They’ve been very ordinary this year.  Great idea on the last punt return with Devin Hester drawing the attention of the coverage team while Knox took the return.  Its a shame that it was ruined by a holding call that was nowhere near the ball.  I don’t know what Cory Graham did but I saw him tapping his chest as if to acknowledge the mistake so it must have been justified on some level.
  7. There was never a point in this game where I thought the Bears were in it.  There was certainly never a point where I thought they deserved to be in it.  It isn’t just that they couldn’t run the ball.  They also dropped passes and they committed penalties.   They did all of the little things that make the difference between a losing team and a winning teaming the NFL.  They had an opportunity to beat a Packers team that didn’t play well today.  They responded by playing even worse.  That’s very bad.

The Bears have some winnable games coming up now.  They need to clean up their act if they are going to take advantage.

Mike Martz Needs to Return to the Sideline for Jay Cutler

For an entire offseason, the NFL focused upon the comments Maurice Jones-Drew made on Twitter after Bears quarterback Jay Cutler left the game against the Packer in their playoffs last year:

“Hey I think the [Urban Meyer] rule is effect right now… When the going gets tough……..QUIT,”

Most questioned why Jones-Drew chose to take to Twitter to do this so quickly during the game.  My question, which he never answered, was what was it specifically about Cutler that made him do it.  I think we know now.

Cutler wilted early after the Saints hit him pretty hard on Sunday.  Its true he took quite a beating but he also brought some of it on himself.  Here’s how Dan Pompei graded him out for the Chicago Tribune this morning:


Grade: 4

Cutler had a near-impossible job in this game, and he didn’t help himself a bit. He held onto the ball too long in spots, especially on the first sack of the game that resulted in a fumble. That was a huge momentum-shifter.

We have to cut him some slack because of the beating he took. But his accuracy was awful. He was bailing out on throws. He didn’t have a good feel for where the pressure was coming from.

Cutler has to perform better in the face of pressure than he did Sunday.  His mechanics broke down.  He held the ball.  He was emotional.  In short, he was completely discombobulated.  To be fair, I would have wilted pretty quickly under this pressure, too.  But also to be fair, I’m not an NFL quarterback.

This was a situation where Cutler needed to be calmed down.  He needed to be reminded of his responsibilities.  He needed to be focused on the game plan, not the pass rush.  In short, he needed coaching.  And several shots of Cutler yelling and gesturing at quarterbacks coach Shane Day made is clear that it had to come from someone other than him.

Generally speaking I’m a big fan of the offensive coordinator calling games from the booth.  You can see better and you can call a better game when you are emotionally disconnected from the action on the sideline.  But in this case I think that, similar to what he had to do with the emotional Jon Kitna in Detroit, Mike Martz has to move down and help both Cutler and Day out.  Simply put, someone with authority and the respect of the quarterback needs to be there to remind Cutler that “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.”

Game Comments: Bears Vs. Saints 9/18/11


  1. There were lots and lots of Saints at the line of scrimmage for much of this game as they tried to stop the run and confuse the Bears with the blitz.
  2. The Saints coverage was pretty good. Jay Cutler couldn’t find his targets in tight single coverage. Similar to what the Packers did to the Bears last year, they did a nice job of taking them out of their offense.
  3. The Bears seem to be using play action effectively in the red zone.
  4. Matt Forte was running the ball so well. Just wonderful patience and vision.
  5. Its a shame that Marion Barber wasn’t ready to play this week. He would have looked like a cannon ball coming at the Saints defense after Forte spent most of the day shifting around them.
  6. It probably goes without saying but this was a poor game for the offensive line, especially on the left side. Lots of confusion. There’s work to be done there before the Packers come in and do the same things next week.
  7. As color man Troy Aikman did a good job of pointing out, the hits on Cutler were affecting his play. All of those good mechanics from last week went out the window. Cutler also paniced in the pocket early and often under pressure, often running when it wasn’t necessary. It all added up to a pretty rough day.
  8. Aikman also made a big deal about the imbalance in the offense. In Mike Matz’s defense, when the Saints are loading up at the line of scrimmage and leaving your wide receivers in single coverage, I can’t blame him for calling passes.
  9. I can’t emphasize enough what a poor game this was for the wide receivers. It wasn’t just the drops. Some of the routes were poorly run and they frequently didn’t seem to be on the same page as Cutler.
  10. Once the Bears fell behind and had to pass, this game became the worst I can remember having to watch. Worse than any game when John Shoop wa offensive coordinator.  Anyone who knows me, know how bad I think that is.


  1. The Saints running backs run hard and seem to be really strong.
  2. It also hard not to notice that the Saints block really well. Good fundamental ball club.
  3. The Bears mixed it up, blitzing occasionally but for the most part played straight defense. The Saints took what they gave them and kept it to short passes, dump offs over the middle and good hard runs. They waited patiently for the opportunity to hit Devery Hederson on the long touchdown in the Major Wright error in coverage.
  4. The Bears were letting the Saints off the hook on third down far more often than they should have. Part of that was the Saints offense but part of it was being out of position on defense as well.
  5. The play on the defense continues to be good up and down the line of scrimmage.
  6. I understand why Sean Payton thought the hit by Lance Briggs was late in the second quarter. From the backside I’m sure it looked like Briggs pouched him well out of bounds. But the replay from the front side who wed that Briggs hit the runner just in bounds and then disengaged.
  7. I thought the defense got tired in the fourth quarter, not surprising given that the Saints were working ahead and they were spending so much time on the field.


  1. Aikman and Joe Buck are ordinarily pretty good and they always make good points, as they did on occasion today. But I hate it when they do Bear games. It’s not that they don’t say good things about the Bears – they do. But they have biases that come across when they do their broadcasts. For instance, I thought the roughing the passer penalty on Jay Cutler was a little border line but wasn’t the “terrible” call that Buck, in particular, thought it was. There’s little doubt that Roman Harper continued with his hit well past the point where he knew Cutler didn’t have the ball. There’s also little doubt that he did take his whole weight down on Cutler when he didn’t have to. When it was pointed out to Aikman, he actually scoffed as if to say, “Yeah, so he broke the rule. Big deal.” Both announcers brought it up at least four times afterward in relation to the well earned Bear scoring drive and the replay was shown at least three times. All of this after they failed to note that Harper lowered his head and used it as a weapon to injure Earl Bennett. Pretty much any break, real of imagined, that appears to benefit the Bears is like the end of the world with these guys.
  2. Special teams were good, Sam Hurd interfering with a fair catch aside. The Saints punter had an unbelievable game. He gave them field position all game.
  3. The Bears need turnovers to succeed. They aren’t getting enough of them. Cutler coughed up the ball once but you can hang that on the offensive line.
  4. The offensive line, once again, was responsible for most of the penalties. That has to be cleaned up. The officiating this game specifically and this year in general has be abysmal. An unbelievable number of missed calls.
  5. Bear wide receivers were dropping the ball all over the field. It was an embarrassment.
  6. I found this game to be very disappointing. It isn’t that the Bears got beat. That happens, especially when you are playing a team as good as the Saints. What bothers me is that the Saints did it with the exact same defensive game plan the Packers used against the Bears last season. Lots of guys at the line of scrimmage, lots of blitzes and extremely tight press coverage. The Bears had an entire offseason to address the problems this presents and as far as I can tell, they’ve completely failed. They still don’t have a wide receiver who can get separation in these situations. The guys they have might have a better chance if they could legitimately threaten deep but as long as the offensive line is a work in progress and Cutler is running for his life, that’s not going to be possible. Until they solve these problems, they aren’t gong to beat any team that can do this to them, Packers included.

Game Comments: Bears Vs. Falcons, 9/11/11


  1. It definitely looked to me like the Falcons started the game selling out to the run. The Bears did a nice job of passing and loosening them up but I never did think that they used the play action like they could have.
  2. There were little picks with the offensive line here and there.   Game commentators Daryl Johnston and Tony Siragusa kind of got on Gabe Carimi and I thought there were times when J’Marcus Webb looked over matched against John Abraham as well. But generally speaking I thought the offensive line was adequate. They did a better job of picking up blitzes and stunts than most pundits thought they would.
  3. There was some awful tackling out there on the part of then Falcons.
  4. Matt Forte did everything he could to prove that he’s worth every dime. He’s not flashy and it’s deceptive in that respect. He made an awful lot of yards on his own today.
  5. Kudos to Roy Williams. Reasonable performance. No dropped passes.
  6. The Bears did a marvelous job of spreading the ball around today. Kellen Davis got a lot of balls. Even Dane Sanzenbacher got into the act.
  7. Jay Cutler looks great. Just great. Couldn’t ask for anything better in terms of accuracy and anticipation.


  1. The Bears didn’t seem to be too thrown by the Falcons no huddle offense.
  2. The Bears got plenty of pressure on Matt Ryan. They showed what the coaches have been saying all of training camp. That the defensive line is improved.
  3. What gets me about Atlanta is that sometimes they make plays that are practically impossible to stop. Ryan is deadly accurate. But they don’t do it consistently. Some of the dropped passes and poor execution, particularly in the second half, were inexcusable.  They’re a dangerous team if they get themselves together.
  4. Major Wright again got himself in trouble. He got blocked out of a long run that Michael Turner broke in the third quarter.
  5. Kudos to Charles Tillman for the job he did with some tight coverage today. He played about as well as I’ve ever seen him.
  6. Anybody seen the great Julio Jones? Maybe he caught one ball. Hardly what you trade away your draft for.


  1. Johnston, Kenny Albert and Siragusa did a decent job today.  It wasn’t anything special, perhaps, but its always nice to have one of the better announcing teams in town.
  2. Five minutes into the game and the field already looked awful.
  3. Pretty clean game for penalty-wise except for special teams on both sides.
  4. Very few drops for the Bears. A lot for the Falcons. It made a big difference in the game. Again, kudos to Williams for having on to everything that came his way.
  5. Special teams for the Bears were much improved over the preseason. Of course it helps if your kicker is putting it out of the end zone. Kudos to Corey Graham. He was all over the place.
  6. Obviously the Bears broke out of their preseason slump to got out and get some turnovers. Brian Urlacher‘s interception was wonderful. Jay Cutler’s late game interception didn’t hurt but in other circumstances it could have. It’s also worth pointing out how many near interceptions Cutler threw. Maybe they need to clean that up a bit.
  7. If I’m a Falcons fan, I’m pretty upset right now.  That was a poor game from a team that’s a lot better than that.  Poor execution, poor tackling.  These are the things that lose games.  However, I’m not a Falcons fan.  I’m a Bears fan and I’m pretty happy.  The offense looked every bit as good as they did in the preseason against what is ordinarily a good defense. The Bears defense looked as good as they usually do.  I had to sit all summer and listen to “experts” trash the Bears and predict that they’d “take a step back”.  That’s because no one outside of Chicago has been really looking at what’s been happening here, especially on offense.  I hope those experts are sitting up and taking notice now.  This might be a very good team in what might be the best division in football.

Roy Williams Will Get No Slack From Bears Fans

Mark Potash at the Chicago Sun-Times wonders if Bears fans aren’t going to be too quick to criticize new Bears wide receiver Roy Williams.

“Sox fans gave Adam Dunn two months. Will Bears fans give Williams two games?”

No.  He won’t get two games.  He won’t get two halves.

Potash and the other writers around town seem to believe Williams lack of personal accountability for his mistakes will work against him.  It might.  It certainly is something I found to be particularly irritating in past Bears like Cedric Benson.  But Dan Pompei at the Chicago Tribune points out that the Bears haven’t helped Williams image much either:

“Hired gun Roy Williams, who has underachieved for most of his career, was brought in and treated as if he were Brian Urlacher. Young, promising Johnny Knox was demoted before Williams took a snap.”

It isn’t as if Bears fans will actually be judging Williams on one or two games.  He has had a number of years in the NFL to show us what he can do already.  Recently they haven’t gone well.  He has one of the worst catch percentages in the NFL over the last three seasons at 48.1%.  He’s also got a history of doing perhaps the worst thing any receiver can have a habit of – dropping balls.  Over the last three seasons he has the highest drop percentage in the NFL amongst receivers since 2008 (via Kevin Seifert at ESPN).  His preseason has not inspired confidence in that respect, either.  Every dropped ball is a penalty for yardage that should have been gained.  They’re devastating.

I like the Williams signing because he should be able to get off the line of scrimmage in situations when Knox couldn’t.  But given his history, if Williams wants any love from Bears fans he’ll have to succeed immediately.

Lance Briggs Continues to Act As If He Has a Choice And Other Points of View


“On the business side, if the organization and management says that they’re not willing to talk about my deal or willing to deal with my deal now or during the season or during the end of the season or next year, then I know that my days here are numbered.’’

I’m sure that I’m like everyone else when I ask exactly what he means by “my days here are numbered”.  My gut feeling is that Briggs estimates his value to be considerably higher than the Bears (and many of their fans) do.  As Mike Florio at points out, Briggs would likely be forced to return a portion of his signing bonus is he did held out, meaning he’d be losing  money he’s likely already spent.  Right or wrong, I’m pretty sure the Bears will let him do so and pay him nothing if that’s what he and his many dependents prefer.

Of concern was the fact that runningback Marion Barber didn’t return meaning his calf injury might be more serious than the team (publicly) thought.  As expected, Corey Wooton also wasn’t ready to practice yet.

  • How much immediate help new Bears safety Brandon Meriweather will provide is an open question.  He’ll need to learn how the Bears play defense.  The Chicago Sun-Times quotes Chris Harris:

‘‘As a safety you have to learn ­everything that’s going on.  A corner doesn’t have to learn the entire ­defense. As a safety, you need to know what this linebacker’s doing because of run gaps. You need to know what this linebacker’s doing because of pass coverage or what this corner’s doing or what the other safety’s doing.”

But I doubt Meriweather will have much trouble.  Via Brad Biggs at the Chicago Tribune:

“We do things differently, we call things differently,’ [head coach Lovie] Smith said. ‘But once you kind of get by some of the different terminology, most coverages are pretty much the same. Most defenses are pretty much gap control. When the ball’s in the air, you go get it. When a guy’s running with the ball, you go tackle him. There will be some challenges, but when you have a veteran like that they normally pick it up pretty quick.’” 


  • You have to wonder how much the signing of Meriweather has to do with the paucity of turnovers the Bears have generated in the preseason.  Meriweather is a risk taker who can give up big plays but he’ll also make big plays.
  • Much to my surprise, the Bears chose to waive cornerback Joshua Moore rather than one of the many undrafted free agents they left on the roster (again, from McClure).  Moore, who was essentially redshirted in 2010, isn’t particularly big at 5’11” but the Bears knew that when they drafted him.  Apparently he didn’t show enough in terms of making plays in camp.
  • Pro Football Focus asks four NFC North questions of four analysts.  I don’t have a last name for “Ben” but I like his thinking in this excerpt.

“Who is the one player from this division you see having a breakout year?”

Ben: With Pisa Tinoisamoa gone from the Bears the door is open for Nick Roach to really make an impression this season. Roach has impressed in limited action at both MLB and SLB in the last two seasons and with a full time starting spot now apparently his, even as a two-down linebacker, this is the year that the Bears re-discover a strong linebacking trio. Brian Iwuh could get a chance to make a similar impression if Lance Briggs’ injury and contract issues continue to be an concern through the season.”

  • Scouts Inc.  previews every NFC team.  Here’s what they had to say about the defense of the Bears first opponent, the Atlanta Falcons:

“Pass Defense:
“Atlanta’s conservative 4-3 scheme is especially vanilla in the secondary. Without an elite cover group, it plays assignment-oriented football. That shifts pressure onto the front four to generate a rush, but the Falcons had only 31 sacks last season, 13 coming from DE John Abraham.

“Rush Defense:
“The goal of the D-line is to eat up blockers while the back seven fly to the ball. But the Falcons gave up 4.6 YPC last year, so a healthy Curtis Lofton must be a game changer at LB.”

Schematically this sounds like an ideal defense for the Martz offense to attack, especially in the first game when a confusing mix of blitzes might be disastrous for an inexperienced offensive line.


  • The penalty from the StarCaps case has finally come downKevin Williams and Will Smith are paying big time for the delay.  each is suspended two games but they are being fined four game checks.  According to Mike Florio at had they taken the penalty in 2008, they would have each paid roughly one-fourth of what they are paying now given their current salaries.  Add in the legal fees and your talking big money.

 The only winner in the deal was Pat Williams who, as we all know, was simply delaying the penalty until his career was over so he wouldn’t have to pay.

  • William C. Rhoden at The New York Times writes about the “Dream Team” Philadelphia EaglesVince Young stupidly put a target on their backs when he used the term to characterize the team which will always be over rated as long as he and the inconsistent Michael Vick are playing quarterback.

This team has set itself and its fans up for some serious disappointment.

“Fans in every NFL city think the Super Bowl host jinx is just a myth until it lands on their town. But there’s a variety of reasons why no team that has provided the stadium for the big game has ever played in it. And at the rate they’re piling up reasons, the Colts — host of February’s title game — might be the first knocked out of the running even before the regular season kicks off.”

  • Rafael Vela at the Cowboys Nation blog takes an interesting look at a couple of the blitzes that the Cowboys will see tomorrow night against the Jets.
  • Omar Kelly at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel points out the dangers of carrying two quarterbacks.  This is becoming a more common practice throughout the league but it could be a particular problem for the Dolphins.  Why?  Because they’ve gone from the starter to the third QB in a game twice in the last two years.  Not a good trend…

One Final Thought

Bengals runningback Cedric Benson is happy to be out of jail.  Via Joe Reedy at the Cincinnati Enquirer:

“I didn’t want to spend my bye week sitting in jail and wanted to get it behind me and focus on football,” Benson said.  “I’m not fit for jail. No one is. When you experience that you realize how much you don’t want to experience it again. It was a nice little wake up call so to speak and it was nice to taste that and hopefully never have to do it again.

hopefully”? “have to do it”?  Like its not avoidable and there might be another time when you have to do it?

I’ve got the under on whatever the length of time it will take Benson to stupidly get in trouble again.

Cuts Have Arrived and Gone but Roster Shaping Not Over Yet. And Other Point of View.


“This guy is straight out of a Rod Marinelli dream. Reed’s effort raises the level of play of everyone around him. And the word out of closed Halas Hall practices is the Bears haven’t been able to block him the last couple of weeks either.”

I have my doubts.  Reed had a good game and did flash some ability Thursday night but it was still against back ups.  He did n’t do a whole lot when given a chance before that with the big boys.  Reed might, indeed, be their guy but other teams are making their cuts as well and the last defensive end may not be necessarily on the roster yet.  Probably both he and Mario Addision should still be worried.

  • Pompei points out that second round pick Sephen Paea has been a disappointment so far.  Pompei thinks he still might be recovering from a Senior Bowl knee injury.  Paea certainly needs work regardless.  He doesn’t play with much leverage.  You can set all the bench press records in the world but it doesn’t mean anything if you aren’t a football player.
  • Fred Mitchell at the Chicago Tribune writes about wide receiver Dane Sanzenbacher.  Sanzenbacher will keep the last wide receiver spot.  But the job basically requires that you play special teams and what to do with him there appears to be an issue.
  • Greg Gabriel, Bears Director of College Scouting when Lance Briggs was seeking a new contract four years ago, comments for the National Football Post on Briggs’s current request for renegotiation:

 “If I’m the Bears I would tell both Briggs and [agent Drew] Rosenhaus to take a long walk on a short pier. If they don’t like it, then don’t play! Fine him the maximum for not living up to his contract. They will argue that he has outplayed the contract, but that’s not true.”


Tommie Harris  Colts
Brad Maynard  Texans
Justin Gage  Titans
Lousaka Polite  Dolphins

  • Defensive end Jacob Ford, who played a key role for the Titans the last few years, was cut.  Via
  •  The Sports Pickle brings you the Dancing Football Ref:

  • On a related note, Bears safety Chris Harris is apparently training to join him on the field as a dancing side judge:

 “The Texans believe they can get more out of safety Danieal Manning than the Bears did. Their plan is to play him closer to the line than the Bears did with their Tampa 2 scheme. Texans coaches believe Manning is more valuable around the ball. They are high on his toughness, talent and work ethic.”

The Bears knew that Manning would make a good strong safety and got plenty out of him at the position.  The problem is that they already have strong safeties and they needed Manning to be able to play free.  When failed in that role and as a nickel back, he was worth less than what teams like the Texans were willing to pay.

  • Pompei also points out that defensive end Ryan Kerrigan has looked very good for the Redskins so far.  I’m still wondering how the undersized Kerrigan will hold up in the 3-4.  I thought he was a better fit for a 4-3 team like the Bears.
  • Perhaps not surprisingly, the NFL season will begin without HGH testing as the NFL Player’s Union stalls.  I can understand why.  If testing is done such that players who are taking the hormone actually get caught, we would probably be looking at a very different game.   But I really doubt that will happen.

One Final Thought

What do you do when you receiver a brand new reel wrapped in a Packer’s bandana?  Perform an “exorcission” of course:

A Few Comments on Last Night Pre-season Finale

I’m not much on preseason games.  Its hard to make too many judgments, especially when it comes to the last one because backups are playing against backups.

  • It looks to me like the Bears are trying to find a way for Dane Sanzenbacher to make the roster.  If he does, he’ll have to play special teams and it looked like they were trying to give him an opportunity to show what he could do there.

    We’ll see if he did enough.  If not, he’ll probably be picked up by a team where special teams are less important than they are to the Bears.

  • Caleb Hanie looked happy on the sidelines last night and I’d have to say that the touchdown pass to Johnny Knox was a beautiful pass.  But, like most of the pre-season, Hanie was inconsistent.  It understandable when rookie Nathan Enderle holds the ball too long.  But Hanie is inis fourth year and he needs to make his read and throw.  You could argue that even the touchdown pass, which arrived only after the safety got over to make a play on the ball, could have been late.

    I like Hanie.  But I can see why offensive coordinator Mike Martz might want to ride him hard.  He looked awfully self-satisfied when neither he nor the fans and media should be really happy.  Hanie’s still not executing the offense like he supposed to nearly as often as he should.

  • The defensive ends, Mario Addison and Nick Reed, both showed well.  Against backups.  I’m worried about depth at defensive end.  The depth at linebacker also looks like a definite concern.
  • Chester Taylor generally did good things with his carries but he’s still not making yards on his own the way the other running backs are, including Kahlil Bell.
  • Roy Williams needed to play.  He’s being treated like he has a status that he has in no way earned in the pre-seaon.  He looks to me like he needed the work.
  • Marcus Harrison flashed too little too late.
  • The Bears left some potential turnovers on the field.  Zack Bowman needs to catch those easy interceptions if he ever wants his starting job back.