Just To Repeat Myself

Last week I made a plea for the firing of Lovie Smith as the Chicago Bears head coach, believing that Jerry Angelo's acquisition of Jay Cutler had earned him the right to hire another coach.  Today I honestly don't care.  Fire Jerry Angelo.  Fire Ted Phillips.  Cut whatever players neccessary.  As long as it means Smith is gone.  How is it possible that yesterday's performance in Minneapolis, coupled with the earlier season losses to Arizona and Cincinnati, are not enough to get a team's defensive coordinator fired?  Replacing Ron Turner - who has decided the only routes worth running are bubble screens and go's down the sideline - would be effective but underwhelming.  The entire staff needs to be shown the door.


And this is no longer about moving into a different direction or maximizing the talent on the field.  The Chicago Bears have become a terrible football team three years removed from an appearance in the Super Bowl.  They can't play offense.  They can't play defense.  If Lovie Smith is allowed to remain the head coach it will be a confirmation by the organization that less-than-mediocrity will be tolerated at Halas Hall.  They need to ask themselves if the hall's namesake would tolerate it.


I wanted to fly to Minneapolis yesterday and tear the GSH off every one of their jerseys.  They don't deserve to wear his initials.  They don't deserve our cheering either.  The coaches are out there.  The big name, organization-stabilizing coaches.  One of them needs to be brought here.  And if he wants Jerry and Ted boxed up and out of the parking lot before he arrives, so be it.  This is a time for definitive action in the face of a crisis because the devastation left by another year of this group might be unsalvageable. 


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  • I'll be the 1st to say I couldn't agree more. Time to go Lovie! He put himself in this situation and now he must own up to his decisions over the last three seasons. So long...

  • Jeff, as a long time follower of Da blog (and never a commenter) I had to today. I have been to EVERY home game this year, and drove from chicago to Minn for the game (6.5 hrs each way).

    The stadium is LOUD, and the number of bears fans was crazy! You could hear when the Bears were on defence "Lets go bears! lets go bears!" To the point that the vikings fans were booing US!

    With all of that we went silent at the half. I am done. I am selling the last couple of games. I will not give this team any more money until I think they are at least TRYING to win games.

    Thanks for the site. It pouts a voice to a lot of our thoughts.

  • Jeff,

    hate to be a fact checker....but Bob Babich is still listed as the defensive coordinator.

    Lovie/Angelo deserve a shot to build around Cutler. Be patient.


  • In reply to rockmamola:

    Rock, are you kidding dude?

    Wow, you're the same kind of guy who keep pushing his

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    I know posting to another blog on a blog is bad form, but I thought this was sad and sick and funny all at once. It's vaguely reminiscent of how Islamic extremists teach their kids to hate Americans at a very young age: http://beargoggleson.com/2009/11/29/young-viking-fans-kick-jay-cutler/

    Read some of the comments below the post, priceless.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    Babich may be listed as DC, but its official that Lovie is calling the plays on D and making the decisions. Babich basically got demoted back to LB coach for sucking earlier, he just kept the title of DC. Explain to me how you're the DC when your not calling the plays. Can you Coordinate a defense when you're not the one calling the defense? No. I've never been a Lovie hater, but there comes a time when things don't fit. This is that time. Lovie bears more blame than I have wanted to give him. I still think he did well early. Maybe it has to do with his inability to deviate from the cover two. Maybe we just don't have the players to pull off his scheme. But at the end of the day, the team and the coach no longer fit. I won't remember him as a bad coach or a good coach. I'll appreciate the years of defensive dominance and the Superbowl appearance. But the dance is over. It's time to tie Old Yeller to the tree and mercifully shoot him.

    RT on the other hand will get no such merciful treatment from me. He can be tied to the tree and tortured for the duration of the century. He deserves nothing but disgraceful ridicule. Give me a gun with one bullet and put me in a room with Brett Favre and Ron Turner and you'll see smoke coming out of my ears. My goal would be to get them to stand real close together, but you can bet I'd put Turner in front when the time came.

    As far as Angelo or Phillips is concerned I just don't care. I don't JA has drafted that poorly and heck, they did get Cutler here. I think getting rid of risky 1-2 round picks for solid commodities is good business with the insane rookie contracts people are throwing around these days. But, like Jeff, if they need to go to get a coach that will perform and stabilize the organization, then pack their bags. They can go too.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    Telling how TV Aikman called out that challenging that play was a sure loser, yet the Lovehammer tosses red flag. Who's talking to him in his headset anyway...He's that over matched as coach that he can't even use replay calls to his advantage with TV help! Forget clock management...his entire Off/Def look helplessly unaware as to what to do. Never have I seen them this disorganized. He lost this team in Cincy.... no doubt.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    I dont put the Bears there, BillW, because right now they have a talented offensive roster. And defensively they did not make improvements because they actually believed they didn't need them. It is not an incapability to build but a refusal to acknowledge their own limitations.

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    I don't know Jeff, it seems to me like the Bears are quite inept at building a good roster, at least as far as offense goes. Their best receiving option in the past couple years has been Bernard Berrian, who is an above-average receiver at best. Their offensive line is old, and overrated. Orlando Pace has been terrible this year, much worse than most people thought he'd be. Other than Cutler and Forte, and maybe Olsen, the Bears don't have that many talented offensive players. But hasn't that always been the story with the Bears, a complete inability to develope offensive players?

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    Jeff, where do you see this offensive talent? Cutler, yes. Forte, avg (good 3rd down back). Des, good all round TE (slightly above avg) Olsen, good pass catcher, pathetic blocker, Knox, could be really good in a couple of years, Devin and Bennett, avg at best, Jason McKie, next, entire OL, below avg. Everyone else is 2nd stringers to these guys (at least according to the coaches). That doesn't add up to a talented offensive roster in my book.

    Go Bears!

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    I believe that Earl Bennett is much better than most people give him credit for. The bottom line is that Cutler does not look for him much. He is open often, but Cutler throws to Olsen in traffic instead, so that the latter can drop the ball.

  • In reply to Mastodon:

    Here, here. Can't wait til my boy Roy breaks down Olsen's tape this year to show how unmercifully bad he is at football.

  • In reply to CanadaBear:

    I hear ya. Pure offensive talent - potentially ? - Cutler and Knox, Bell/Forte. That's it. We need at least a couple of linemen via FA and a 6'4 WR. Hester's learned enough to go deep occasionally. Experiment over, back to ST for the Windy City Flyer ...

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    I think when all is said and done it will be clear that Angelo has been the bigger problem in Halas Hall. Sure, he got Cutler. But he did so after not drafting any o-linemen on the first day of the draft until Chris Williams, a guy that has had medical issues and has been underwhelming. The team's offensive woes are more a result of the lack of talent on the line than the playcalling. Sure, Turner should go, but Angelo is the bigger problem there.

    On defense, Angelo is also the as big of a problem as Smith. Why? Because he's as tied to the cover-2 as much as Lovie, and has been partner in the personnel decisions that have led to many of the problems on defense. When he was brought in, he dismantled a good defensive line to re-build it in a cover-2 mold. If you bring in a coach like Cowher to run a 3-4, it'll have to come at the expense of Angelo.

    The one thing I'd place squarely on Smith's shoulders is the way they've bungled the safety position. I think Smith overestimated his ability to "coach up" great athletes into becoming great safeties, and that hasn't worked out. S has been the weakest position on the defense for years now, and it's still not fixed.

    I could be wrong, but I don't see this team firing both Angelo and Smith. And firing one without the other seems pointless to me. The bottom line is they both need to go.

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    And on the Jay Cutler thing.

    Do you know what you get when you plan your team around a good running back, a great quarterback, some decent wide receivers, and a horrendous offensive line? Matt Millen's Detroit Lions. That's the problem with the offense. The play calling is embarrassingly predictable, but the O-line is the biggest weakness on the team, staff included.

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    this is one helluva comparison b/c that's EXACTLY what the hell this team is. Detroit last year.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    Detroit had draft picks ...

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    the offense that is

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    I was excited about Pace for 2 reasons: it came right after Cutler AND I don't know jack about evaluating football players. I foolishly trusted Jerry/Lovie despite the failure of bringing in AA. It's THEIR job to figure out if a guy is an upgrade or not.

    Jeff - sorry, but I disagree about the offense having a talented roster. With all respect, that sounds like a Lovie quote. They seem to have SOME talent, but nowhere near enough.

    You knw, I'd be willing to start with trading Hester and Olson. Hester will never be a huge threat again; and Olson not only CAN'T block, he WON'T. How do have a running game with a TE who won't block? How can you contain a big pass rush with a TE who won't block? Those two in my opinion are expendable IF you can get value fro them.

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    so bears blog fanatics....any thoughts on the Urlacher comments?


  • In reply to FQD1911:

    Urlacher is so dumb. If he's dumb enough to say that then we don't need him playing football. Trade him, be done with him. Can't do that. Can't talk like that.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    Urlacher loves Lovie, because Lovie doesn't call him out for sitting on the sideline this season, despite having an injury he could come back from.

    Lovie won't trade him to the Patriots, like Cower would. And once Bellicheat understood he didn't have another Teddy B on his hands, Brian might get exposed. There is a reason his peers list him as "most overrated LB" in the anonymous player survey each year.

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    Lovie = worst time manager in the NFL
    Lovie = worst red flag challenger in the NFL
    Lovie = too loyal to mediocre coaches
    Turner = was never qualified to be an O Coordinator in the NFL
    Cover 2 = most antiquated D in the NFL
    Angelo = has no idea how to draft offensive talent
    Angelo = when's the last time he made a trade of personnel?
    Coaches = need to be held accountable for the worst season in a decade!!!

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    Am I only the only one who would question the Jobless Coaches? With the notable exception of Cowher, all of these big-name coaches (Gruden, Shanahan, Holmgren, etc.) were mostly FAILURES.

    Shanahan won two Super Bowls with some guy named Elway, and then was mired in mediocrity for a whopping NINE YEARS before finally getting canned after last year's monstrous collapse. (By comparison, it's only been three years since Lovie's SB run. I don't know if you guys remember that.)

    Holmgren was a decent coach, but a terrible GM who had to be stripped of GM duties so he could stay on as head coach. Then he left when the situation in Seattle started deteriorating.

    Gruden had one kinda fluky year with Tampa in '02, and won zero playoff games since then before getting thrown to the curb.

    Does all this mean I do not want Lovie fired? Absolutely not. He sucks. He needs to go. My point is, we were all salivating over a big-name QB until we finally got one, and look where it got us? Not to say that it's the QB's fault, either, but the point is that the whole organization is completely fucked, and just bringing in some big-name, giant-ego head coach will not solve all of them. This organization needs a complete overhaul. We don't need another Shanahan or another Gruden; we need another Josh McDaniels or Bill Belichick, a disciple of a winning coach who knows what it takes to win.

    When Lovie Smith was hired, I had never heard of him. That's fine. I'm all for anonymous but talented coaching candidates. But when I found out he was the DC of the Rams, I was like, WTF? The Rams? Even when they were good it was despite their defense, not because of it. Now, the Bears are bad because of their defense. Pathetic.

    Get another coach. We need a winner. But it doesn't have to be, in fact it shouldn't be, Shanahan.

  • In reply to Joist:

    What we need is another Jim Finks. And then a few years later we could survive some big-name, giant-ego head coach. You know, like Ditka.

  • In reply to Mastodon:

    Word up.

  • In reply to Mastodon:

    He's gotten the benefit of the doubt long enough. Smith's gotta go, Turner's gotta go, Marinelli's gotta go, and Angelo better get only one last shot with a new coach. They MIGHT eat Lovie's contract, but Angelos's too would be a pipe dream. Otherwise I'm becoming a Raven's fan; hell, they play Bear football better than the real Bears have in a decade.

  • In reply to Mastodon:

    I hope the Cowher rumers are true...Football is a game of emotions and I don't believe Lovie has any. 99% of the time he has a dumb founded look on his face like he is in the middle of a bad dream and can't wake up. He looks dazed and confused or has been high for the length of his tenure with the Bears. Despite the the addition of Culter, the Bears will be the in the pits of the NFC north with all the additions that Detroit had made this year; if management doesn't go out and spend the money to bring in Cowher or Shanahan as well as some other weapons on both sides of the ball. I still think the worst moves the Bears made were in '05 and '06 bringing back RT and letting go of RR. The Bears defence didn't lose the SB in '06 it was Lovie's poor coaching decision.

  • In reply to shawndgoldman:

    It should be noted that the Bears did TRY to significantly improve the offensive line in the offseason, we expected our first round pick from a year ago to actually be a man, and they brought in Pace (for the record, I didnt hear any fans, myself included, saying that was a BAD move at the time) and they probably made a mistake with Omiyale, but I dont think you can really fault the front office for the line woes...they made moves...at some point the players have to play...

  • In reply to Dmband:

    That's the point! There are two issues here:

    1.) Angelo isn't a good talent evaluator on offense.

    2.) Angelo hasn't taken enough shots at O-linemen to offset these deficiencies. If the guys on the roster suck, it's usually more the GM's fault than the coach's.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    I totally agree that with Lovie Smith the Bears have been going nowhere. Since going to the Superbowl, they have failed to develop anyone on defense from the draft. Lovie should be fired, and most of the people under him as well. Although, given the realities of the contract situation, I'm sure Lovie will be back next year. Which isn't a big deal, it's just another year of losing. Even with Lovie fired, this team is going to have a rough couple years.

    I think the big test for the Bears will be whether they do a good job the next couple years of rebuilding. I don't mind losing for a couple years, as long as the Bears start putting together some good draft classes.

  • In reply to millertime:

    We're hoping that the McCaskeys shock us and send Angelo and Lovie packing, eating the loss - and give Cower GM powers - also known as 'Tuna Power' and hope he can pull off what the Fins did.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    I've always been on the side of, there is no point firing a coach/GM unless you have something better. I've also been against firings mid season, but I was thinking about this from a logistics standpoint and I think I've changed my mind.

    What it really comes down to though is can Lovie and Staff turn the team around faster than a new Coach and Staff. I don't think they can.

    If Lovie is going to be gone at the end of this season anyway, we need to be looking at personel for whatever new scheme will be put in place sooner rather than later. In which case it makes sense to loose the existing staff sooner rather than later.

    I think that Lovie will be gone at the end of the season, only because Ron Turner has to be gone and what's the point bringing in an offensive coordinator if the entire staff is gone the season afterwards. In which case why not make a move now, while you can at least get the pick of other teams practice squads with a new scheme in mind.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    Yesterday was the first time that I voluntarily did not watch or listen to a Bears game (actually, I listened for about ten minutes). It was amazing how free I felt, not having to watch the utter stupidity and feel my blood pressure rising to unhealthy levels.
    Not sure I'll watch another game this year. Hoping I will, but this lack of effort/passion and sheer foolishness is revolting. I've seen some horrible teams through the years (most of 90s, 02, 04 come to mind), but I've never been absolutely disgusted with the team or players. They were often overmatched, but the D usually hit people and would keep us in it. There was pride and a feeling that it could get better. I only see it getting worse with this team.
    If Lovie isn't fired...

  • Fans with tickets to the upcoming home games stay home an empty stadium might get the attention of those upper level management idiots that fans will not tolerate the product being put on the field.

    In fact take it one further I would love to see a fan revolt for the Mon nighter on 28th of Dec, dont go to your seats until after the first quarter let the entire nation see Soldier Field empty on a Mon night game.

    Its disgusting it has to come to this when a lot of folks have been screaming for coaches head since 2007.....if we can see it how the hell do the people dealing with this on a day to day basis not see it. I dont care if the players enjoy playing for Lovie it sure does not show on the field! Fire them all.

  • The Trib is reporting that Hub Arkush said on the Score that the Bears have reached out to Cowher to see what it would take to sign him. The Bears deny this but Hub said his source is "impeccable".

    Rock - with all respect, I don't beleive Lovie has earned that shot to build around Cutler. Too much inneptitude has been on display this year. I dont' think Angelo deserves it either, since he seems to have no idea that more than Cutler was needed. Why trade a #2 after giveing up so many high draft choices - and then at that spend it on defense. That's not protectign your investment - that's foolishly thinking that all they needed was a better QB. No plan - it's like he's playing Fantasy Football instead of running a real team with real (human) players.

  • In reply to BillW:

    If Hub said a source was good - it's good.

    Goodbye Lovie and the Tampa 2.

  • Agreed Jeff.

    This organization needs an entirely brand new start (AKA, fire RT, JA, LS, TP, and all the right (wrong) assis. coaches) the second after the last game ticks down to 0:00, not after next year and another failed experiment. While I completely agree with the symbolic and emotional desire to fire them all now, I

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Thanks MB, you just made my day! :)

  • In reply to Mastodon:

    You know me, I just can't resist SC. It's sad, but it's amusing... kinda like feeding the lesser monkeys at the zoo. It's like watching them acrobatically try to catch the peanuts you toss to them, but you also know they're juuuuust dangerous enough to sling poo at you at any moment.

  • Rock, Lovie calls the defensive plays. That makes him the defensive coordinator, whatever title they give Babich. You can't be a Bears fan and make that comment.

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    I'm just telling you how the Bears themselves have it listed.

  • In reply to rockmamola:

    Your defense is what the organization tells you must be true?

    This is the Chicago Bears we're talking about here.

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    I think throwing the Challenge flag on the totally unwinnable call that Matt Forte was "down" because his hand was on the ground says it all. That is a poor coaching decision, and it wasted a timeout. Lovie is always throwing challenges on ridiculous things. It's just recklessness and wastes time-outs.

  • In reply to BearsChick:

    Lovie like flag. Flag red. Lovie like red. Red look like happy. Lovie happy.

  • In reply to BearsChick:

    At the least the FOX announcers called Lovie out on that.

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    billw what do you think they would say if cowher wants new oc dc ad gm

  • In reply to JeffHughes:

    DENVERBEAR - Well, first of all OF COURSE the coach would want his own DC and OC. (??? Maybe you're jsut a kid so I won't comment further.)

    Regarding GM - I doubt the Bears will do it. As much as I disagree, I think Angelo gets a chance to build this back up now that he got the "franchise" QB.

  • In reply to BillW:

    sorry to sound so stupid i was thinking of everybody demoting lovie

  • In reply to BillW:

    Bears chick, I couldn't agree more. I thought that moment from Lovie perfectly summarized his tenure here.

  • In reply to BillW:

    The Knox fumble challenge was laughable.

    I want to know exactly who told Lovie it was worth challenging.

    Did you see Lovie's post mortem presser?
    There wasn't enough fire in it to light a candle.

    Anyone else feel that lack of emotion is just another hallmark of this regime?

  • In reply to BillW:

    So I was playing a little Super Tecmo Bowl after the game and I finally realized where Turner got his playbook from. I've been preaching to rid Chicago of the disease I call "Lovie" and its nice to see that the vaccine should be out soon. Last I heard, Lovie is still looking around the stadium trying to figure out where he is at.

  • In reply to BillW:

    I didn't have a big problem with Lovie and the challenge flag. Of course it was hopeless but I've seen plenty of head scratching reversals in the last few years. Rarely does a wasted time out hurt you in the first half.

    I don't want Lovie back either but I still say JA is as much at fault as Lovie. Look around this team. How many blue chippers do we have? Briggs, Gould and Cutler (with better coaching and talent around him). Maybe Devin as a KR only. That's it. Really sad. Both the OL and DL are way below avg. Gaines Adams looks like tweener that would be useful in a 3-4 alignment (if he has any talent). Wale and Brown are just OK, Harris, Harrison and Adams are OK at best and awful at worst. There isn't one player on the OL that's even average.

    I'm all for Shanny or Cowher coming in but we need a GM along with them. Shanny is a terrible GM and Cowher has never done it.

    We stink BIG TIME due to a terrible GM and mediocre (at best) coaches. SIGH!


  • In reply to BillW:

    Jeff, I've read the blog since Cutler was signed and you've done a great job.....BILLW,Please tell me Hub Arkush is correct. They had the balls to make the move for Cutler, do they have the balls to ditch this staff?

  • In reply to whatwouldditkado:

    OK - Hub is correct. (If only it was that easy...)

  • In reply to whatwouldditkado:

    There are teams that are completly inept at building a quality roster. They get lucky with a player here and there and create the myth of being in contention as a result. Sometimes if things line up right they even can make it to the SB. But they tend to fall VERY rapidly after that. That's who we are. A few really good players in 2006 was enough for a great run. It was over essentially before the game itself was over.

    Who are these teamslately? St. Louis, Detroit, Buffalo, SF, for sure. Maybe Arizona. And certainly Chicago. I truly hope the media starts making those comparisions. We may not have hit bottom, but we fell a long way in a short time. That's not on the players - that's shoudl be obvious to anyone who has followed football rather than just watch the games.

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