I'm not trying to beat a dead horse here, or kick my friends in Chicago when they're already down. (In fact, they've been down, for years and years and years now). But watching that game yesterday, I only had one question I kept asking myself and my group of friends at my bar who'd been there all day, getting fired the fuck up for kickoff and what they expected to be an amazing turnaround season, (besides "what the fuck was I thinking taking this team to win more than 7.5 games?") was: "what the fuck does this team do all offseason?"
This year we actually know what they did, they spent money for the first time in forever. Ryan Poles convinced George and Virginia to open the checkbook and spend some of that more than $75 million in cap space they had coming into this season. Poles started off the offseason with a bang, trading down from the first overall pick in this upcoming year's draft in a package that got wide receiver D.J. Moore from the Carolina Panthers. Right off the bat they inked deals with Tremaine Edmunds, T.J. Edwards, DeMarcus Walker and Nate Davis. They'd later add Travis Homer (rb) , Andrew Billings (DT), Robert Tonyan (te), D'onta Foreman (rb), Dylan Cole (lb), Rasheem Green (DE), punter Ryan Anderson, and the legendary Nathan Peterman.
So they spent.
They actually drafted well for the first time possibly ever, receiving B+'s from all around for the most part. (Pro Football Network, NBC Sports, Mel Kiper Jr.) Even after trading down, they still had four selections in the top 64, and addressed immediate concerns (line) and down the road.
All steps forward and in the right direction.
So you assholes that love to clown Chicago fans for being optimistic are just being dickheads in this regard this year. This wasn't "same old Bears and same old Bears fans" like it is every other year. There was real, legitimate optimism coming into yesterday because there was real genuine football leadership and competency in the front office (or so it seemed) for the first time in forever during this offseason.
So what the fuck happened exactly?
Of course, yesterday was Game 1 of a 17-game season. So it's drastic to say the sky is falling, the season is over, the Justin Fields experiment is a disaster, Eberflus is over his head, etc.
But I do think yesterday was a microcosm of just how inept the Chicago Bears are as an organization overall.
First off, there is flat out zero excuse to look as flat as they did, at home, against your historic rival, who by the way happens to be "down" for the first time in 20+ years. The thoughts of, "we may actually catch Green Bay on the way down this year, while we're on the way up, beat their ass and regain a little respect in terms of what was once a pretty real rivalry" could not have only been had by the Chicago fanbase. The players and organization had to have shared them as well.
So where was the fire? Where was the smell of blood in the water and going for the Packers' throats?
This was the biggest Bears game in years. It was hyped up as the dawn of a new era around here.
Yet the Bears came out with the same vanilla, "kitty by the door" bullshit gameplan they've ran since the Dick Juaron days.
(Have you EVER seen an NFL team that runs more screens and bubble screens week in and week out than the Bears? And yet can still NEVER break one for big yardage? It's wild.)
And spare me the "Fields can't throw deep garbage". There's a difference between "can't" and "won't".
Regardless of the totally uninspired, lack of urgency, or desire, or whatever sports clichè you want to use for heart yesterday, here were some dumbfounding facts about the Bears yesterday-
The Bears drew a penalty on THE OPENING KICKOFF. THE OPENING FUCKING KICKOFF OF THE SEASON!
Starting things right off with horrible field position, they were stuffed on two straight plays before running a horrific play call on 3rd down. 3 and out to punt, giving Green Bay and their new QB a short field position.
Love came out and marched right down the field for 6 which prompted former Bear announcer calling the game, Greg Olson, to remark that it was "a dream drive for Jordan Love."
Exactly what you want to gift to the guy you've been waiting 17 years to replace the guy who haunted you endlessly.
This new-look Packers offense scored on their opening drive of the game, scored on their last drive of the first half (momentum), and opened the 2nd half with a score on their first drive.
The Packers were 60% on third-down conversions. They were 100% on 4th down. They scored on every trip to the red zone.
I'm as sick of posting puking gifs as you are of seeing them but want a combo-stat that will really make you puke?
Most pressures allowed in the NFL in Week 1: Chicago Bears (25)
Fewest pressures allowed in NFL in Week 1: Green Bay Packers (2)
Where was the blitzing to shake him up, get him rattled, or anything of the sort? How do you let this kid come into your house, settle in the way he did, and pick you apart with a bunch of no names, like he's a seasoned veteran?
Fields and the Bears meanwhile threw the ball more than 10 yards JUST THREE TIMES all game. THREE passes of more than 10 yards! That's on 37 attempts.
Remember stud #1 WR DJ Moore? The guy who they traded the #1 overall pick for essentially?
Yah he was targeted 3 times also…
And that wasn't even the worst of it. The worst of it has a name and the name is Chase Claypool.
This was all day.
This sack of shit couldn't have cared less being out on the field. He's been a bum since he arrived in Chicago, and is leaving the offense shorthanded each time he's out on the field. Get him off this team. Kick him off the tour Doug!
This makes it hurt even more -
All game, the Bears were shooting themselves in the foot with procedure penalties. Holding calls. The line, TEs and receivers all firing off the ball at different times. It looked like the preseason for this team.
Which again, leads me back to my question, what the fuck does this team do all offseason?
How was nobody working with Justin Fields day in, and day out?
The poor kid looks beyond lost out there. Which is forgivable your rookie season, behind a God awful line where you're running for your life every down. But this is year 3. This was Fields 28th start. Why is he still showing the same bad habits of not even pretending to go through his progressions or look downfield, and going straight into a tuck and run?
I know the line is still dogshit. Improved, but still dogshit.
So why aren't coaches rolling him out, running play action every play (like San Fransisco and Miami do so well) for him to buy him an extra second or two and enable him to extend plays with his legs?
Why is it the same "meet the new boss, same as the old boss" shit they were doing, and not doing, with Trubisky under Fox and Nagy, with this new cast of characters coaching staff?
Because like any organization, it all starts at the top.
I fully understand that George McCaskey is in the position that he's in because he won the sperm lottery, and to no merit of his own. But how are you 67 years old, and the only "job" you've had your entire life has been to run and manage a professional football team, and you can't figure it out? It's literally all you have to worry about. You'd think by luck, and the 10,000 Hour Rule that after a while you'd learn at least the basics through osmosis or something wouldn't you?
If you were looking at this entire situation from a scientific perspective, to decipher what the issue was, using the scientific method, you'd look at the decades and decades of data. Since George Halas passed away and left the beloved team to his widow and children, there have been hundreds and hundreds of new faces in the front office, on the sidelines, behind center, and on the field. Save for a two-year blip in the system (Hurricane Ditka, Sweetness, and the '85 Defense);
it has been the same exact results over and over and over. So you look for what the one constant or common denominator is. And that's the McCaskey family.
This city was on fucking tilt all day yesterday before 3 o'clock. People were everywhere, dressed in blue and orange. Every bar was packed. Streets were buzzing. Spirits were high. As I said, it was "a new day". Fucking Dick Butkus flew in to be at the game!
By halftime, it was like everybody's dog had died. Bars began clearing out. Soldier Field began clearing out in the 3rd quarter! (watch slide #7)
I'm sick of seeing this city let down by its football team. I've seen how electric it has been when they manage to squeak into the playoffs, I can't even imagine what it would be like around here if they were to go deep in the playoffs.
Chicago is a football city. Bears fans deserve better. Granted, it took decades, but even the Lions and Browns have figured out a way to turn it around. Why can't this franchise?
p.s. - don't be shocked if poles packages together the bears 1st rounder with the Carolina 1st rounder to trade up (if they even need to) and land a QB poles is confident in coming out in next years draft.