Defense. Offense. Defense. Offense. The Bears aren’t a good football team because they lack consistency from one week to the next. The only thing consistent is that one of the units plays badly.
Jay Cutler continued his abysmal performances in prime time with a five-interception game against the 49ers. I still contend that it’s more a coincidence than the time of the game, but it’s been bad nonetheless. He threw two more red zone interceptions — including on the last pass of the game — and continues to lead the NFL in that department.
I’m willing to do something I haven’t done all year and that’s place the blame on the Bears’ best player. Even though three of his interceptions weren’t his fault — Devin Hester slipped and fell to the ground on one, then Hester got blocked by the umpire on a second, and Kellen Davis was interfered with on a third — it is Cutler’s fault the Bears lost this game.
I truly think Cutler is pressing too much. He is fully aware of how bad his supporting cast is and he once again got beat up by the opponent’s defense.
In the second quarter, Hester probably had his worst series as an NFL receiver. He was flagged for a false start on one play and penalized for holding on the very next play. A few plays later was when he slipped and fell, which caused the one Cutler interception that led to the 49ers’ touchdown.
Greg Olsen had a nice game with 7 catches for 75 yards and Hester added 7 receptions for 48 yards. Matt Forte, who only had 41 yards on 20 carries, caught 8 passes for 120 yards to lead the team.
I have to give credit to the defense for their performance. It was far from perfect but they played hard and inspired defense, particularly in the second half. The only touchdown they allowed came after one of Cutler’s picks left them with a short field to defend. For most of the game, they held Frank Gore in check, but it was a 25-yard gain and a 23-yard gain that hurt them. Without those two breakout runs, Gore was held to 56 yards on 23 carries.
I also have to give credit to No. 91. It was about time he showed up. He played one of his best games of the season and it was due to a constant motor. He picked up one of the Bears’ two sacks of Alex Smith. Marcus Harrison recorded the other.
I was also pleased to see Charles Tillman record a forced fumble. It happened at the end of one of Gore’s long runs and the Bears didn’t recover it, but it was good to see that Peanut remembers how to do it.
It was much more a defensive game than I thought, but the result was the same nevertheless. The Bears have lost their fourth game in five weeks since their bye and there is no daylight in sight. While not impossible, it’s highly improbable they’ll win either of their next two games against the Eagles and Vikings. In December, they still have the Packers, Ravens, and Vikings. The only two games they look like they’re capable of winning at this point are against the Rams and Lions.
It’s quite possible the Bears could finish the season 6-10. And without a first or second round draft pick next year — and without spending big free agent bucks — the losses could start all over again next year.
- Free Agency: Is Shea McClellin done with Bears?
- Would Jahri Evans make sense for the Bears?
- Super Bowl 50: Peyton Manning, Cam Newton differences plentiful
- Super Bowl 50: Pass rush still most valuable NFL asset
- NFL Predictions: 2015 Week 21 Picks — Super Bowl 50
- Super Bowl Odds: Analyzing the lines for 2016 season
- Bears' Zach Miller seeking big free agent contract
- Cam Newton’s race comments off base, miss the point
- Dave Wannstedt offers solution to defending Carolina Panthers
- Phil Emery joining Atlanta Falcons scouting department