Quick Game Comments: Cardinals at Bears 12/5/21

There isn’t a lot to say about this game. Both teams had similar offensive game plans. As is often the case, the difference in the game was the turnovers. The Cardinals had 4 interceptions that gave them 24 points. Its hard to beat that.

That’s not great insight. But sometimes great insight isn’t what’s needed.

The Cardinals have the look of a team of destiny about them. These are the sorts of things that happen. Interceptions by defensive lineman, tipped passes that result in interceptions. There have been a rare years when the Bears have looked like this over the last 30 years. The 2001 team is the prime example. You have to make the most of them, and I think Arizona is doing that.


  • The Arizona defensive game plan seemed to be to play zone and let the Bears matriculate the ball downfield and shoot themselves in the foot. Which they did. The Bears concentrated on taking the underneath passes to David Montgomery and running the football. They were limited to less than 5 yards per pass.
  • It seemed to me like the Bears ran the ball pretty well today. So I was surprised to see that the running game only resulted in 112 yards. Nevertheless I can’t imagine what this game would’ve looked like without David Montgomery on the Bears. His 21 rushes for 90 yards and 8 receptions for 51 yards meant a great deal to the Bears offense today. I hate to speculate as to how good he would be on another team that could better take advantage of his skills.
  • I’m used to seeing offenses pick the fenders that are in man demand coverage. That happens all over the league. But I don’t remember seeing teams pick defenders while in zone coverage quite as much as I saw the Bears do today. It was interesting to watch. The slot receiver runs a rude such that he basically cuts off the defender of the outside route. It worked pretty well.
  • Arizona got a lot of pressure on quarterback Andy Dalton through the blitz today and he handled it pretty well. He didn’t rush for a lot (6 yards) but I was surprised at how elusive he was in the pocket.
  • It was nice to see a team other than the Bears get a delay of game penalty coming out of a time out. The Cardinals did so with 2:30 left in the first half.
  • The Bears repeatedly attacked Jalen Johnson and, despite his interception, they had some success doing so. This may be something to keep an eye on as Arizona progresses into the playoffs.


  • Personally, I think the Bears defense did a reasonably good job today. They were simply put into a lot of bad spots with a lot of short fields resulting from interceptions that the offense gave to the Cardinals.
  • Nevertheless there were a number of mistakes made. They did a poor job of keeping Kyler Murray in the pocket and forcing him to throw from there.The undisciplined pass rush allowed Murray to rush for 59 yards in crucial situations including a touchdown. In fairness, a lot of defenses have failed to do that.
  • Without Murray’s yardage, the Cardinals ran the ball for 76 yards which I consider to be a good day’s work.
  • Although many will be surprised that Kindle Vildor started this game at cornerback opposite Jaylon Johnson, I was not. Unlike most of the people in the press box last week, I did not think Artie burns their very good job throughout most of the game. Vildor is certainly less than ideal but of the two he’s the better player.
  • I thought it was interesting that the Bears chose to have Johnson follow DeAndre Hopkins around the field today. Johnson didn’t do a bad job, all things considered. Hopkins is a game record and Johnson held him to two catches for 32 yards, although one was for a touchdown.
  • It’s unlikely that the Cardinals felt the need to target Hopkins much today. They spread the ball around reasonably well to a wide range of receivers and simply attacked the rest of the Bears defense of backfield with some success (11 receptions for 123 yards).
  • The Cardinals seem to like to run the end around play to use their speed to attack the edges. The Bears must’ve seen this on tape and they were well prepared for it. They stopped a couple of these plays for negative yardage.


  • Mark Schlereth was the guy to do this game as color analyst. Rainy day where it was largely about what was happening at the line of scrimmage. This is his forte. I thought he and Adam Amin did a good job of highlighting the principal points.
  • The Bears were dropping the ball all over the field in the rain today. At least twoof the four interceptions were passes that should have been caught in my opinion. These sorts of things can be lillers for an offense that struggles to make big plays.
  • The Cardinals were surprisingly undisciplined today with 8, often foolish penalties for 64 yards. They got away with it for this game, though. The Bears had 6 penalties for 45 yards and they didn’t seem to be as damaging to me.
  • Of course, turnovers were the story of the game. The Cardinals got four interceptions and they resulted in 24 points, as I stated above. There isn’t really much more to say about it.

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