Win or Lose, the Bears Are Still Underachieving

Six months ago, if you told me that the Bears could be 9-7 and in the playoffs, I would have said that the Bears overachieved this year. Looking back at the season, its hard to imagine that this season can be coined a success even if Jay Cutler and the Bears beat the Packers. The evolution of the offense has been nothing short of spectacular. I must give credit where credit is due, but its impact was completely neutralized when you look at how bad the defense became. I never expected the Bears defense to remain in the top 3 in the NFL because the defense is aging, but I never for a moment expected that the defense would be 29th in the NFL.

They can't stop the run. Even I could run for 100 yards. I'm almost certain that any running back in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl Game could go off for 100 yards and I don't even know who is playing in that game.

The Bears should not be in a position where they need to win to get in. There should be no reason why they lost to the Redskins, the Rams, the Vikings, the Lions (twice). yet they did. The common denominator in those losses were an atrocious defense. Yes, in some games the offense was not there, but the defense did not help the team.

For the Bears, this is what is at stake: 1 draft spot. Thats really what separates the Bears and Packers currently in the draft order. For the Packers, they could win and go on to the Super Bowl with Aaron Rodgers. The Bears defense is so bad that they could win on Sunday and they are just going to get embarrassed the following week by the 49ers. I have no faith in this defense, its pathetic.

Jay Cutlers legacy is supposedly on the line here this Sunday, but one game isn't going to define him. Win or lose, Jay will be back to lead this team next year. Not McCown or any rookie in this upcoming draft. Jay's legacy will be defined when he no longer plays for the Bears. While he is a free agent, I don't see any situation that he is not in a Bears uniform next year.

The Bears very well could win on Sunday and I am picking them to win. I want them to win, but in reality, a win doesn't mean much. This defense is too shoddy for this team to make a run at a Super Bowl. I've started thinking about next year and if Phil Emery can do to the defense what he did to the offense this past offseason, the Bears will be a force to be reckoned with for the next few years. I do not expect that the Mel Tucker will be fired after this year. With an aging defense, I think he will be spared. He did not have the personnel that he needed to be successful. Since he has coached in a 3-4 defense in the past and this off-season representing a transition year for the Bears defense. I do wonder if they will make that transition to a 3-4. This would rescue the Shea McClellin pick. This will be a busy offseason for the Bears.

In Emery we trust

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  • I don't know how you can say this team underachieved. They have the second highest scoring offense in the NFL. They have lost four Pro Bowl performers for all of part of the season, and a fifth wasn't signed until late in the season. They have an entire new set of linebackers and lost both starting defensive tackles. Its completely unfair to judge this defense at this time.

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    Let's take as step back and offer a little bit of objective analysis of what is going on here. After a near decade of incompetence, ineptness, and imbecility the Bears had more needs than resources this offseason and had to eat the elephant in the room. That was building an offense (I will not say rebuilding because the moron never built the offense). They made the (correct) decision to attempt to get another year out of an aging veteran defense with little depth and no developmental players in the pipeline. As good as Lovie was on the defensive side of the ball, most of his talent was inherited or bought, and when they lost one of their big names, the defense would struggle. That is also why the defense would fall apart later in the season. Ok so they positioned themselves, win or lose, to rebuild this aging defense this off season. No one expected the D to fall off as far as they did. To be fair, no one expected the O to perform as well as they did this past season either.

    Ok so what do we have on the D side of the ball? A defensive coordinator who has never done anything spectacular in the NFL. A line and backfield coach that remained in place from Smith's regime, and a linebacker coach that came with Trestman. This linebackers coach was a DC for Trestman at one point and was demoted. Schematically that falls on Tucker. Fundamental football falls on the position coaches. We have a defensive line that could not control their gaps, linebackers (two rookies) that showed no significant fundamental improvement over the course of the season, and two safeties that are a testament to Smith's incompetence and Hoke's inability to do his job.

    Ladies and gentlemen, there is no ONE coach or one player that will fix this D. There are multiple issues and it starts at the top. This Bears fan at a MINIMUM wants to see Phair and Hoke gone. Tibesar probably needs to go too. Tucker, I am fine either way. His hands were somewhat tied this year and he was asked to get blood from a turnip. I would not object to Tucker getting a shot with full control of his defense...I would not object to him being replaced. But this Bears fan believes that before they can rebuild that D...they need coaches in place that can do their job at the positional level. I am confident Emery will acquire quality players. He has a pretty solid track record in the making thus far. They need to ensure they have position coaches that can get the best out of the talent they are given, so they can give the DC what he needs to coordinate a defense. They need to ensure they have a DC that can bring it, and give Trestman what he needs to win football games. Just like on the is a team effort.

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