The Rodgers Rhythm

Last year, the Packers embarrassed the Bears at Lambeau Field 37-3.  Aaron Rodgers had all day in the pocket; completing balls to Driver, Jennings and Lee (and six others) by owning the center of our defense.  To add insult, Ryan Grant and their big offensive line dominated our otherwise sturdy rush defense to the tune of 145 rushing yards and a fifteen minute edge in time of possession.  It was the Bears worst performance of 2008 and it made me dry heave in the Josie Woods toilet.

Beating the Packers Sunday night will come down to breaking Rodgers' rhythm.  The Packers have had a much-ballyhooed preseason of offensive dominance and the only way to injure their confidence is to disrupt their rhythm right out of the box.  An early sack.  A well-timed interception.  A three-and-out.  Rodgers completed over 68% of his passes in the two games a year ago.  He threw 69 times and was sacked nil.  It's not surprising that he was a massive Alex Brown hand from going 2-0 against the Bears in his first season as Packers quarterback. 

And as successful a preseason as this was for the Bears, a dangerous trend continued.  Trent Edwards went 10-for-10.  Eli Manning went 7-for-10.  Kyle Orton went 12-for-16.  Starting quarterbacks this preseason completed 80% of their passes.  The old axiom of establishing the run will be ignored by opposing offensive coordinators if the Bears continue to allow easy completions/yards in the passing game.  When opponents are connecting at an 80% clip, why bother putting a tailback on the field?  Teams used to run to setup the pass.  Look for the opposite to be true against the Bears in 2009.

That's why the first few series will be so important for the Bears defense Sunday night.  This is the finest passing attack they'll face all season long and if they allow Rodgers & Co. to move up and down the field at will, they'll be in for a long evening.  Our offense can not be expected to gel for 40 in their first full game of action.  It's imperative that the defensive unit - all but one of which returns from last season - set the tone for 2009. 

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  • first?!

  • Thats some scary shit.

  • I'm hoping the techniques our corners were using in the preseason were just a vanilla smoke screen. If not Rogers can hit those quick slants all game.

    I think part of the reason those routes were open last season is Babbich was calling a very safe game, meaning we were in cover 3 a lot. I'm hoping Lovie makes the corners to play a more physical game. If both Bowman and Peanut are back there that's a distinct possibility.

  • I think this team needs to seriously considering putting bodies on these receivers at the line of scrimmage and trying to clog the slant passing lanes with the linebackers.

    But that's just me.

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    Finally someone who agrees with me. A friendly forearm shiver to the chest within 5 yards of the line of scrimmage will:
    1) Slow down the play and give the D-Line more time for a sack.
    2) Take away the quick slants which have been lacerating our secondary for far too long.
    3) Piss off the receivers and give them something else to think about than what their FIRST DOWN taunt looks like.
    What

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    I, for one, will be surprised if Peanut is there. In general, I am not much of an optimist and Jeff's talking points on this thread are all WELL FOUNDED and have me concerned.

    I would sign-on to his "bodies on receivers..." suggestion in a heartbeat. But Lovie and Rod are committed to that Tampa 2 and, correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think crowding wideouts is a part of the T2 equation.

    Another worry: The Packers have a new and dangerous-looking tight end.

    Make no mistake, I think we are going to have to be patient and are likely to endure an 0-2 start while the offense gathers enough rhythym / momentum to really take some heat off the D.

    The best defense against a good offense is to keep them off the field. Good as he is, Aaron Rodgers cannot hit Greg Jennings on a slant while they are both seated on the Packer bench.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Thank You Albert, That was the point I was just going to make is that I too am concerned about Rodgers haveing a practice day with our defense...but...BUT I sure feel a lot more comfortable with the our offense this year than I did the last 3 yrs. The game is won by those who score the most points. So the door swings both ways. If their DC has been watching our offense play.. they could be just as nervous as we are. In my mind Jay Cutler is a better QB than Arron Rodgers is so it will be a very fun game to watch.

  • In reply to RogerMinton:

    In case you missed it dude, Rodgers was #4 in yardage and passing, #6 in QB rating last year. Cutler has proven ZILCH so far.

  • In reply to Randy:

    Meant to say yardage and touchdowns.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    We need to ensure we DO block their corners they blitz endlessly and like earlier said our front 4 will hold the fate of our beloved bears! BEAR DOWN!

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    If you look at the last few preseason games, the Bears have been quite aggressive on defense including pressing WRs at the line. Of course you can't press all the time but the Bears have been aggressive with their coverage for most of preseason including showing the mug defense against the run. It's dangerous, however, because there's more of an opportunity for a CB to get beat deep. The Bears have shown in the past they're willing to give up the short stuff to prevent the big play deep, but I like what I've seen in preseason.

    I thought Peanut was a lock for week 1, but it looks like it's closer to 50/50. You have to believe the starting corners are going to be Bowman and Vasher, but personally I'd rather see Bowman and Corey Graham. I'm a bit concerned about Danieal at FS if they're going to start him there - Payne would obviously be next most logical choice. And as much as I'd like to see the Volcano erupt I do worry he is a bit green in terms of NFL football.

    While some people might think that Sunday Night could be a shootout, I believe points are going to be hard to come by. The Bears defense might give up a number of passing yards, but they usually find a way to create a turnover or get stingy around the goal line. I think the key on defense for the Bears is obviously hot Rod Marinelli. If the front four can get to Rodgers the Bears should be able to create takeaways and give Cutler and Forte more opportunities to put up points on offense. Throw in Dave Taub with Robbie Gould and Devin Hester on special teams and you have a signature Chicago bears victory.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    the easiest way for the Bears to defeat the Pack this year is to legally and cleanly hurt Aaron Rogers. Alex Brown needs to use his huge Bear Paw and annihilate him, Pisa needs to chase him down when he scrambles, Barrison needs to sit on him. A concussed Rogers sitting on the sideline can't throw quick slants or deep fades.

  • In reply to hollywood1:

    And that's gonna be real easy, since GB doesn't have any O-line or anything...dude, you're a weiner.

  • In reply to Randy:

    Funny, the same is being said of the Bears not having an O-line either.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    hope i'm not the only one watching fsu v. miami. it's an unbelievable ballgame.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Per WGN Sports tonight: Peanut pronounces himself 50/50 for the opener.

    Bear coaches need to get into the officials ears early and often regarding Al Harris. My bet: Harris will yet again be allowed to play with his mitts all over our "unproven" wideouts all day while our corners won't be allowed to look cross-eyed at Jennings and Driver without flags flying left and right.

    And yes, beware the corner blitz. Woodson wrought absolute havoc blitzing against the Cards 2 weeks ago.

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Lovie's calling the plays this year remember. Tommie Harris is allegedly recovered from his particular malady. Urlacher is ten pounds of muscle bigger. Pisa is is in the house. Marinelli knows the score and has our boys schooled up. Our D will be hungry and mean and in Rodger's face all day. Urlacher will be blitzing up the middle which they won't be expecting. I'm cool with Bowman and Vasher at the corners, one of whom is a pro bowler. Blood on the highway. This is still going to be a high scoring high octane high casualty shoot-out no doubt, with JC - the Second Coming - somehow pulling it out of the bag for an awesome victory. I hope. Special teams will be the difference.

  • In reply to IrishBearsFan:

    You do realize if your basing your opinion on the bears blitzing up the middle from what you saw in pre-season, the packers will be more aware then you will ever be that its coming. for god's sake it's their job and its called game planing and if you think you know more about what the bears will do then the packers, who might i add pay people to watch and analyze what they do, you are ignorantly mistaken. nufsaid

  • In reply to Albertintucson:

    Those preseason stats of opposing QBs won't mean a thing come Sunday night. Both Manning and Orton were ineffective with their completed dinks, neither team moved the ball against our first team vanilla defense. We played pre-season-show-em-nothing football and didn't stunt or blitz. You just know Marinelli is going to have us stunt like a real defense, Lovie will call intuitive blitzes. They can't run the ball against us so we know we're up against the gunslinger. Lovie will get us out of this. His first, his last, his everything is to beat Green Bay. And we will. Blood on the highway ....

  • In reply to IrishBearsFan:

    Your blood, not ours...37-3. I'd like to see a repeat of that.

  • One big difference this year boys and girls JAY CUTLER BEAR DOWN!!

  • I think we're going to see more physical coverage from the CBs, especially if Peanut is back there. But it all depends on what's happening with the front 4. I think Ogun will play better this season. Brown played well last season and I think he'll be the same or maybe a little better. I think Adams is an upgrade from Dusty. Of course none of that really matters if Tommie is playing on one wheel.

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