The Seattle Seahawks and Chicago Bears did whatever they could to give away Sunday's game at Soldier Field.
The NFL, however, dictates that one team must become victorious in a regular season match (unless the game is tied after 15 minutes of overtime).
The Seahawks won the match, the Bears lost a golden opportunity, and the entire Chicago area grimaced as Jay Cutler nearly wound up in a bodybag.
Here is the Ditka (good), the Spellman (bad), and the Mirer (ugly).
Mike Williams- After leaving USC, Williams joined the circus known as the Detroit Lions to become an NFL wide receiver....he was never heard from again. This year, however, after
being reunited with former coach Pete Carroll, Williams has turned a corner. Today, Williams reached career highs in catches (10) and receiving yards (123). Maybe that dude who used to make one-handed catches at USC isn't dead, after all.
Seahawks Offensive Line- A mish-mosh group stopped the Bears from getting any sacks, and were able to muster some necessary yards rushing (111). Nothing record breaking, but after the Bears' defense lit up Carolina, it was a good job. Devin Hester/Danieal Manning- The Bears might have the best 1-2 returning combo in the NFL. Hester's punt returns are reverting back to his 06/07 form, while Manning is consistently pulling big returns. The holding call that sent Manning's touchdown return back was a horrible call...but officials seem to call anything on a return. Anybody who thinks that was a hold has never played football before.
Chris Harris tackles- He had two tackles that sounded heavy. Didn't expect that.
Seahawks Blitzes- Were they confusing? Not really. These were basic blitzes that featured some basic jet blitzing, and feeds off the corner that confused a newer offensive line. Why did they work? See under (The Mirer).
Jon Ryan- I don't know if anybody remembers this...but Jon Ryan had arguably the worst day in punting history back in 2007 with the Green Bay Packers at Soldier Field. He dropped a snap, had a kick blocked...it was a sh--show.
Today, however, Ryan placed 6 punts inside the 20. His only mistake? Finding Hester between the hashes. Sure, it was a pretty big mistake...but Ryan had the Bears pinned for most of the second half.
Peanut Tillman- Had a tough time winning battles with Mike Williams...or any receiver for that matter. It wasn't a question of toughness. Tillman had 7 tackles, but he couldn't make plays on the ball. At portions of the game, the 'Hawks picked on Tillman specifically. That's bad news.
Bears running backs- 88 total yards rushing and receiving between Matt Forte and Chester Taylor. Is this a case of Cutler not utilizing them more often? Is this a case of Martz not utilizing him more often? Is it a case of the offensive line being so bad that the backs have to stay in all the time? I'm sure it's a little bit of everything. That being said, two talented backs like that can't combine for that many yards...I don't care how poor the offensive line is.
Bears receivers not knowing where the sticks are- This happened twice; once with Earl Bennett and once with Johnny Knox. Unacceptable. Completely unacceptable.
Brandon Manumaleuna- Is there a return line in St. Louis...kind of like the ones they have at Wal-Mart? "Um, excuse me...excuse me, sir...can I return this Brandon Manumaleuna, please? Because he's a heaping pile of sh&$...and he sucks."
Jay Cutler- I'm not putting him in 'The Mirer'. Cutler made some nice throws today. But the communication level between him and his receivers was not there today. Is that 100% on him? No. On Martz? No. It's everybody...but in the NFL, the quarterback has to rise above that. Too many plays were Cutler's passes were two steps in front of the receiver, or behind. I know in the Martz offense, you run to a location, not the ball. Well, the ball didn't get there...receiver's fault of Cutler's? Doesn't matter.
Julius Peppers- Sure, you can't depend on Peppers to be Mr. Everything every single game...but with Lance Briggs out, the Bears needed Urlacher and Peppers to hit a new level. For both, it didn't happen. It was more glaring for Peppers, who had a couple opportunities with single blockers, but still couldn't get the big play. Am I upset? Hell, no. Peppers will be back, it's just that today wasn't one of his better days.
Bears' Offensive Line- The Bears moved Chris Williams to guard, this week. Something tells me the flip-flop wasn't the only reason the offensive line was destroyed, this week.
The communication between the line was abysmal. On the line, each player has to read and give a call based on the look that they are given. The rotations in pass protection are based on talent and communication...that's it.
When a line hasn't worked much together, the communication aspect is dead. Seattle, knowing this, threw some basic blitzes at the Bears (especially from the corner), and the Bears couldn't handle it. On multiple occasions, the Bears had to rotate, or give a call to the backer to make sure a blitzer was being picked up.
This isn't high school.
In high school, a slow read can be taken care of...in the NFL, a slow read kills your quarterback. Seattle did simple things; like feeding right on a play, and sending blitzers off the backside. The Bears linemen were ridiculously slow-footed. With corners and backers blitzing, the Bears were regularly toast.
The Bears allowed six sacks, and helped the team run for a measly 61 yards.
If this isn't taken care of by the end of the bye week, Jay Cutler might wind up eating through a straw for the rest of his life.
Jay Cutler's blindside- I get it. Your line sucks. But a quarterback has to have some feel, right? Cutler has no feel on his blind side. Say what you will about players like Dan Marino and Peyton Manning who can barely move outside the pocket, one thing the two of them have is amazing awareness between the tackles...something Cutler lacks.
Bears on third down- 0 for 12. For the love of Jack Concannon!
No Sam Rosen!- We're stuck with the somber tones of Chris Myers? I love Rosen and his excessively loud Skokie-like voice. "ITS A CHICAGO BEARS TOUCHDOWN! AND REMEMBER, A SPECIAL WELCOME TO MY NIECE SARAH GOLDMAN WHO JUST HAD HER BAR MITZVAH AT THE TEMPLE HA'EM! BLESS YOU AND YOURS!"
A great man.
Next week, the Bears welcome Donovan McNabb and the Washington Redskins.
God have mercy on our soul!