The Run Game

Peter King ranks the Bears fourth in his pre-summer Power Rankings,
stating that "If Cutler can lead an offense that puts up 400 points,
only a point and a fraction more than a year ago, the Bears should win
12." I love the idea of the club winning twelve games (and wouldn't
mind a Super Bowl either) but history tells the story of a team that
lives well NOT by the quarterback but by the man running the
football.

Why, you say? Why are you trying to take the pressure off the man
you have heralded as the savior of the franchise? (I'm not) Aren't you
just covering your ass in case he becomes a colossal failure of
Elizabethan proportions? (He won't)

The 2006 Chicago Bears had only 3 games all season long with under a
hundred yards rushing - 2 against the brilliant rush defense of the
Minnesota Vikings and 1 in the statistical anomaly known as the Monday
Night Miracle in Arizona. Three games. All year. Under a hundred yards.
For that they received a trip to the Super Bowl. (The '85 Bears had
only 2 all season long, including the playoffs.)

2007? 12 games under a hundred yards rushing. 2008? 10. Get the picture?

Now I'm not arguing that strength at the quarterback position won't
lead to more success in the run game. It certainly should. But Ron
Turner's Chicago Bears offense won't depend on just Jay Cutler or Matt
Forte or acquiring Anquan Boldin. It will depend on the confluence of
many, existing parts. Cutler's presence will be threat enough but he
can't turn the ball over. Orlando Pace has to protect the blindside.
Frank Omiyale has to become a viable starter. Someone has to catch the
ball. If these things happens, Forte and Jones will find holes and find
success.

Because in the Lovie Smith era, no statistic has more coincided with
victories than rushing yards. Not turnovers. Not rush defense. Nothing.
If this team is moving the ball on the ground, they are winning. Facts
don't lie.

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