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Back from Boston where I went to visit some friends. I watched all the football games and of course the game between the Bears and the Panthers.

I am still in denial from what occurred. Let me set the scene. We were in a bar called "Champions" in downtown Boston. It was a good sports bar considering there was more than ample space dedicated to big screens, flat screens and projection televisions. Really you couldn't turn or go any place in the bar without a view of a tv showing football. This prospect of football at every turn might be nightmare to some, but it was cool for me.

Another bonus was that I located myself next to a couple groups of Bear fans (one sporting probably the best 1980s era Ditka sweater ever seen), which helped immensely, especially since there was a family rooting for the Panthers.

I was lucky enough for my friends to join me. Not sure if they were rooting for the Bears to be nice or because they wanted them to win, but they all cheered, clapped, and jumped up and down with me which was great.

What was not great was the beginning of the game and really the play that killed the game and the tempo. I know football isn't won or lost on one play but hear me out on this one. Ok, if you saw the game you know the play. Charles "Peanut" Tillman trips and eats grass allowing Steve "I am the Carolina Panthers and Nobody Can Stop Me" Smith to go in for an easy score on the Panthers second snap of the game. Not to mention he made Mike Brown look absolutely ridiculous (I think the reason why Brown left the game was out of embarrassment), but anyways.

The Bears proceed to try and get right back into the game by having Grossman gun it the next two times they have the ball. Its a marathon not a sprint damnit! Somebody must have forgotten that the Bears where/are a running team. So the Bears continue to sputter falling further and further behind, which forces them to stick with the pass. Grossman isn't bad, but hes not Manning, he was 17-41 in the game. The Bears have no business passing 41 times and thinking they can win.

The Bears had some impressive scoring drives don't get me wrong and Grossman's drive leading into the half was very nice. Again though they need to be running, grinding the clock down, resting the defense, playing ball control. With Grossman throwing they simply weren't eating the clock enough. He was not efficient enough. Nor was he consistant. A QB that is consistant wins you football games.

This was compounded by the fact that the defense decided the playoffs was a great time to not show up. Corners were falling over themselves and for some reason they forgot Steve Smith was the best wide receiver in the game or the fact that he had 14 catches in their first meeting. Well I am sure his 12 catches, 218 yards and 2 tds will haunt the Bears for awhile. They are not going to be forgetting that.

Perhaps we should be happy that a team picked to finish last in the NFC central did so well. But, talk of next year and talk of over achieving is ignored and forgotten when a team like this, with a city like Chicago behind it, falls short. The tantalizing prospect of making it to the NFC championship was so close. Just one game! I am not going to be focusing on the Bear's next year until draft time.

Technically growing up in Olympia I could root for the Seahawks, but the tradition is not there. I will root for them, but the pain and joy I get from football really only applies to the Bears. Hopefully the Hawks can do well. They have a lot of quality people and I have always thought Homegren was a standup individual.

Bears QB not the best. Not even close.
Deadspin's game commentary.
Chicago Tribune's Full coverage.

2 interested person(s)

Eric said... @ 1/17/2006 09:30:00 PM

Those damn bears. More like the Bad News Bears. I still can't believe it.

Anonymous said... @ 1/18/2006 08:45:00 AM

i still dont belive it was the defense that let us down. the pain of being a true bear fan is tough and right now it stings. why get all the way to the playoffs and stop trying. WHY.

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