Rapid Fire Thoughts From the Preseason Opener

Rapid Fire Thoughts From the Preseason Opener

I sat down to watch the Bears first preseason game expecting to be bored out of my mind.  Surprisingly, I was not.  I actually found the game quite entertaining and also very, very interesting.  Here are my rapid fire thoughts, in order of importance.

  • Even elite, top of the first round left tackles struggle their first year at the position.  J’Marcus Webb clearly has the ability to succeed there but I have a feeling 2011 will be up-and-down.  I’d imagine the Bears will slide protection schemes in his direction to minimize damage.
  • Roberto Garza’s center exchanges were solid and he, like the rest of the line, had a great push in the run game.  His pass protection?  Shaky.
  • I was surprised to see the defense play with such speed and intensity this early in the preseason.  Three distinct standouts: Henry Melton, Major Wright, Tim Jennings.
  • Amobi Okoye will have a terrific chance to make this roster, especially with Marcus Harrison looking like he spent the entirety of the lockout eating corned beef hash directly out of the can.
  • Vernon Gholston played like Vernon Gholston but I was surprised to see the attention Rod Marinelli was giving him on the sideline.
  • I may have overstated the importance of the Bears re-signing Corey Graham.  He looked in no way capable of playing corner for this team.
  • Jay Cutler and Caleb Hanie give the Bears their best quarterback tandem since McMahon/Fuller.  It’s clear from just what the cameras captured that Jay Cutler is taking a more active role in leading this team.  (And Mel Kiper Jr. deserves credit for predicting Hanie would be a very successful pro.)
  • Who the hell is Eddie Williams and can he go away now?
  • Same for Josh Davis.  Even on a team with a subpar offensive line, #76 took the cake.
  • Marion Barber and Kahlil Bell both looked like elite downhill runners.  I don’t know that the Bears will consider carrying four backs but I’d hate to see Bell drop to the practice squad and end up in the Lions or Packers backfield.  Chester Taylor’s days may truly be numbered.
  • I liked what I saw from Brian Iwuh.
  • I did not like what I saw from Chris Conte. He’s small and Steltz-like.
  • Kris Adams is smallish but might be a player worth developing at wide receiver.  As most eyes were on Dane Sanzenbacher, it was Adams who stole the spotlight in the second half.
  • Nathan Enderle displayed touch and poise throughout the second half.  He’s very raw but the tools are there.
  • Here’s something I read in between the lines: I think the Bears are going to combat some protection woes with a dynamic screen game in 2011.  It was the most practiced play on the field Saturday night.

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  • First. Our "starting" o-line gave up four sacks in the first half. Pathetic and unacceptable.

  • So what comes FIRST, Webb learns to play, or Cutler dies?

  • In reply to SC Dave:


  • In reply to SC Dave:

    SC, I'm picturing Hank Hill as I'm reading your Bah!!!

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    I was pumped to watcht he o-line so sure that it must have improved from where the left off last year. To my surprise they looked worse. Everyone is going to say it's only pre-season but the o-line must gel together and that takes time. Cutler again had to run for his life and looked very uncomfortable in the pocket. Can't blame him as he had over 1200 lbs. of angry men wanting to dry hump him as he's laying lifeless on the ground.

  • In reply to JAB1:

    After we lost Kreutz it had to get worse. I know he was bad last year, but he wasn't 100%. Angela played poker with Kreutz' contract and Olin's ego played back. We all got screwed. Olin. Angela. The Bears. The fans.

    I didn't see Garza really, so I can't comment, but I don't hear/read much that was good. We know Spencer sucks. Someone tell me how good comes from any of this ....

    Reliance on the run perhaps, with playaction-rollouts off the back of that ... but will Martz realise that and go with it?

    Pass protection-wise, Webb is not going to go from super-bad to good NFL Left Tackle. Can't teach speed.

  • Jeff, I'm not as optimistic as you about Jamarcus Webb. He looked overmatched on just about every play I saw. Hopefully Carimi can continue what he showed on Saturday because he looked far more impressive than Webb. If he can hold his own then they can shift the TE over to help Webb. There was a alot of pressure from coming from the middle of the field as well. I know it's early but this was the Bills not a dominant D like the Packers.

  • I'd also reserve judgement on this "And Mel Kiper Jr. deserves credit for predicting Hanie would be a very successful pro". Hanie has been adequate given his limited opportunities but very successful is a stretch. I do love your optimism though Jeff. The only thing I feel optimistic about is the D and special teams as usual. O looked like dog shit yet again.

  • In reply to JAB1:

    I disagree with you wholly on Webb. I thought he actually played well. The offensive line gave up two coverage sacks where the QB held the ball far too long and two of them on zone blitzes up the middle, not off the edge.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Webb got bitch slapped by Merriman, got beat and had to hold to keep his guy from killing the QB and the only successful run plays were to the strong side except whn Barber beated his way to break some tackles. I stick to my statement that Webb looked overmatched at best.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Agreed - there was a holding penalty/sack where Webb got beat upfield, but Jay couldn't step up into the pocket because Louis didn't block his guy AT ALL.
    And the Hanie sacks were coverage sacks.
    Everybody wants to sound like a genius for predicting that Webb is going to have problems - well, of course he is - he's playing LT in the NFL. You WILL get beat from time to time.
    The interior of the line (mostly Right Guard) needs to get better. And the good news is that Carimi looked terrific.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    And it's not like Merriman bullrushed him into next week; Webb steered him upfield like he's supposed to, but there was no pocket left. Is he supposed to block every rusher?
    It's a shame we didn't have time for Spencer to get in and learn the playbook well enough to start at Center, because this line would be much improved with Garza back at his natural spot.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Not every rusher, but get in front of the one he's assigned to block would be nice. I'm not saying Webb doesn't have a shot to be good, but to depend on him to protect Cutler's blind side is scary to me. I will agree that Louis looked like horse shit though. What's frustrating is these are the same bullshit problems we come on here and criticize every year. We have a championship caliber defense and special teams and even running game but without the pass protection to maybe just maybe keep our QB from getting manhandled 5-6 times a game would be icing on the cake.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Yes the middle of the o-line has to learn to play together. Garza has to make a tricky transition as a center/pass protector. I still believe he should play LG and they should start Spencer.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Again, Spencer was rated the 27th center in the NFL last season by PFF, and has been one of the worst pass blocking centers in the NFL over the last three seasons. I don't get why he should be a starter.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Those two sacks from the blitzes up the middle were actually the RBs fault. Forte and ??? Chester maybe, whiffed it on the block.

  • Forte isn't very good at pass blocking, but Barber is - Forte might lose his starting spot ....

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    I agree with you Jeff. Webb had his hands full with Shawne Merriman who was much faster, & a majority of the Bills sacks were due to coverage with Enderle being the worst offender holding on to the ball. As I stated in my assessment, the Bears run blocking helped moved the ball very well. I was also very impressed with RB Harvey Unga who seem to run hard and with a lot of determination. All told, the Bears offense racked up 164 yards on the ground with a 4.7 yards per carry total.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Jeff, you said Webb 'clearly has the ability to succeed there {at left tackle}' - but based on what? His ranking as the worst RT in the entire NFL last year? Being beaten by speed rushers everytime there's a pass play? How has this seventh round pick given you cause for optimism?

    If it's on this game alone, then fair enough, I only saw the first qtr and I was tired at that.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Jeff, you said Webb 'clearly has the ability to succeed there {at left tackle}' - but based on what? His ranking as the worst RT in the entire NFL last year? Being beaten by speed rushers everytime there's a pass play? How has this seventh round pick given you cause for optimism?

    If it's on this game alone, then fair enough, I only saw the first qtr and I was tired at that. But this was the Buffalo Bills remember. He has more to do in the NFCN.

  • In reply to IrishSweetness:

    Also, listen to what Tice says about Webb in "Tice on Oline"
    This guy is not a J Webb fan, he's just on the roster and Tice can't get rid of him. I want to see Levi Horn get a run.


  • Caleb Hanie is already in the NFL longer than most predicted and is going to have a better career than Alex Smith, David Carr and Matt Leinart combined.

  • And to say they "looked worse" is to ignore their dominance in the run game. You can't pick which plays you choose to evaluate.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    But we have to pick and choose. They were good in the run game last year and looked like shit in pass protection. This year? The same exact thing. Martz's offense is a pass offense. The NFL is a passing league now. How do you pass when your QB is on his back or concussed?

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    But we have to pick which way we choose to evaluate. That was their only strong area last year as well. We have to watch the pass protection as it cost us a trip to the Super Bowl last year. Our run game hopefully will stay the same as last year but if we don't improve on pass coverage we will get killed this year. I know it's pre-season but I didn't see any blitzes from Buffalo. They beat us straight up off the line.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:


    In game 1 of the preseason. I could not be happier. Scheme will come. As the season wears on, and the D'd get beaten up, that number will bring us into the playoffs with a chance to get into the Super Bowl.

  • In reply to Viva:

    Hopefully that number carries on through the season, and it stands an even better chance of doing so if we get rid of C.Taylor.

    Bit worried about Barbers durability though, not sure if he can play like that for the whole season.

  • In reply to Jeff Hughes:

    Perhaps 'looked worse' means in pass-pro. We can hardly be better losing our pro-bowl center. Carimi can't block at five positions.

  • am I blocked or something? Everytime I try to post a response it's not showing up.

  • Obviously the O-line will be key to Cutler's sucess this year but I'm not too worried at this point. Pre-season means nothing. Look what St. Louis did to Indie, but indie didn't play any of their most important starters. If was fun to watch the Bears sucessfully run the ball and even the 3rd string D looked agressive and hungry.

    Yes, Webb and the O-line are a concern this season but I think they'll step up and do the job.

  • My anti grade for Saturday night.

    Martz: A. This cat knew what to do with Cutty after three plays.

    Webb: A+. Webb pulled off the heist of the century by convincing Tice a broken tooth equals great potential.

    Jerra: A+. Nobody could have ignored our most glaring weaknesses better than Mr. Angelo.

    Defense: F. This group once again failed to match the offensive lines enthusiasm and commitment to excellence.

  • I am not real concerned with the O-line yet. I think Garza will go back to RG and Spencer comes in at center before we get to game 1; 4 sacks is a lil misleading to just look at. 3 of them were in the first two series and 1 of those was Hanie's fault for missing his read and holding the ball too long. After they settled down they were fine and gave up a sack on a stunt, it gives them things to work on and experience.

    Barber will be fine, he has run like that his whole career, and he is a change of pace back, he is essentially everyhing we need behind Matty. Bell looks too good to let go, Chester is gone.

    You know my biggest concern from the whole game? The f'n punter, I thought we got rid of Maynard for only averaging 43 yds per punt, I didnt see Try-Pod boot one over 40, even the one decent punt was like 45 and that rolled 12 yards. We better not be punting from our own goal line very often this year.

  • In reply to Urlacher FTW:

    Maybe Tri-Pod was sandbagging and using his 3rd leg to punt this game?

  • In reply to Michael L:

    He was doing everything else out there...why not?

  • It's easy to over analyze the first preseason game after a lockout that limited the players ability to shake off the dust from the offseason. I loved what our special teams, backfield and defensive units were able to show me. So far I am encouraged and I hope the Line gets their act together before week 1.

  • I wanted to throw out a few things this morning.

    I’m not going to offer up a worried review of the first game for a few reasons:
    • I did last year and the only strong criticism that held us was that the oline was the worst garbage in the league (again), I want to wait and see this year…
    • I didn’t see a gad damn single play except a couple highlights afterward on espn, because I totally forgot about start time (was setting up my PS3, back online baby!! Handle MB30SD… GP, Johnny, look me up mainges) and by the time I hit one of the links, it was all full (damn it!)
    • I saw our 2010 season on NFL Yearbook last night and when you show only our highlights for 30 minutes it tends to pump one up and make one very hopefull
    • I do learn once in a while
    • Side note: Line brightspot… amazing what a true sub-30 1st rd draft pick gift will do for you huh Angelo?

    Thus, I’m not going to detail my dejavu feelings when watching high(low)lights of this Oline that is guaranteed to get the bears shuffle multiple times again this year - hopefully like a couple of you have said spencer at C and garza back ar G. Shocking but I can’t be as optimistic as Viva about our run average against a 2nd and 3rd string BUFFALO BILLS team just yet - if we carry that through the preseason I will feel better - there is no doubt we've improved our run blocking at first glance. I just hope tice can find the right combo to get pass protection working before Jay dies. I will be excited to see the next game.

    What I did want to talk about is how our management is turning the Chicago Bears into the fucking bush-league joke of the NFL. What the fuck is Angelo and his merry band of morons doing to our proud franchise? Jesus christ, is this guy fucking kidding??!?! Read this….

    “League VP of officiating Carl Johnson told me he got a call from his officiating observer at Soldier Field a few minutes before the Buffalo-Chicago kickoff Saturday night, saying the Bears planned to kick off from the 30. Johnson told his man on site to tell the Bears they had to kick off from the 35. But the communication to the Chicago sideline wasn't working, Johnson said, and so the Bears weren't notified until after their second kickoff from the 30.

    As Johnson told me, there is a way for teams to not kick the ball into the end zone if they choose. They can simply have their kicker boot it higher or kick it so the ball doesn't go past the goal line. But they can't choose the yard line they kick from. As Competition Committee chair Rich McKay told me: "Membership didn't vote on this because it was a game enhancement. They voted for it because of player safety.''

    It'll be interesting to see if the league comes down hard on the Bears for choosing to interpret a playing rule they way they wanted to, not the way the rule is written. As far as how the rule will play when the season begins: History shows when weather gets bad late in the season, kickoffs don't travel as far. My guess is touchbacks will happen on around 40 percent of the kickoffs this year

    Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/peter_king/08/15/camps/index.html#ixzz1V6hxUzzJ”

    Yeah, that’s fucking brilliant… know what… I’m going to find a school zone today and drive through it at 100 mph. When I get pulled over guns drawn, I’m going to tell the cops… “Yeah I saw the 25 mph sign, and I thought that it was a pretty lame suggestion, so I just did whatever came to mind... what’s the problem pig?”

    Can we please fire angelo… yes, I know… it was probably more of a coach's decision, but I don’t want to rile the lovie protectionist on the blog. I’m just sick of inching closer to being talked about as part of the NFL village idiots (bengals, raiders, etc…). I thank god our players are solid (except the oline) and buck whatever moronic shit our management does. Sigh.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    "Better to seek forgiveness, than ask permission." Interestingly enough, Robbie Gould said that the rule was indeed ambiguous, and DT was pushing the envelope. I like it.

    How is it that we see things this differently?

  • In reply to Viva:

    viva, I am pretty much a seek forgiveness person, but after the raven debacle, it just makes us look bad. It just struck me as a dumb way to handle it.

    Btw, you ever thought about being either a therapist or becoming a priest? I think you'd be really good at either (seriously).

  • In reply to Viva:

    I agree with you Viva. I actually like the message theBears sent to the league. They basically implied that the new rule sucks and it will hurt our team more than most. Good on you Lovie. I like to see him stand up against silly rules that hurt his teams commitment to excellence in the 3rd phase. Anyhow's, that's how I see it.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    sure, I get it Trac. Thumb our nose at the league and just another of their inane PR-focused rules. Fuck you goodel!

    ...but it got us where again...

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    I thought it was kind of funny actually...
    What games are you guys going to play on PS3? I am going to swap out COD Black Ops today I think.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Your analogy is a bit off. It's more like doing 50mph in a 55 speed zone. Unless the new rule (as well as the old rule) specifically states that the ball must be kicked from the 35, rather than that the kick should be made from no closer than the 35, I think DT is on to something.

    Also, just because the league changes the rule because of "player safety" doesn't mean that the rule makes players safer, nor does it mean that teams that work around it make players less safe.
    1) All else being equal, closer kickoffs=more touchbacks=fewer returns. But along with that, more touchbacks=slightly fewer scoring drives after kickoffs, offset by slightly more scoring drives after possession changes Meaning more punts, potentially more turnovers. Both of those situations are at least as dangerous as KOR. Maybe there's less speed involved, but you have less organization and more guys changing direction, and doing things they aren't used to doing (i.e., offensive players tackling, defensive players blocking). In the end, I have to say the change would be a wash for player safety.
    2) The NFL isn't run by idiots. They have to know that this wll do jack shit for player safety compared to mandating the custom mouthguards, safer helmets, and other seemingly easy fixes. And they have to know that this rule will end up, at best, slightly lowering scoring. And they have to know that teams will adjust their schemes so that the KORs they can make will be riskier--so as to maximize returns o a rarer occurrence. So what's the real point of this? I hate conspiracy theories, but in this case, I think that the owners who proposed/voted for this change want to reduce some of the volatility in games. They don't want teams getting lightning-strike scores (or big yardage returns) that can undermine the dominance of the team that just scored.
    3) I'll bet that with KOs coming from the 35, teams are going to try a lot more onside kicks. The further up the ball is moved, the less risky an onside kick is. You get a 10- or 15-yard penalty against the defense on the PAT, and suddenly you're kicking off from the 45 or 50, and a failed onside kick only results in giving the opponent possession at their own 45 or 40.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Also to be fair, the Bears did notify the officials what they were planning to do -- communicating their belief in their interpretation of the rule and the latitude it allowed.... and the officials let them. So it's not really like your speeding analogy at all. If the rule is written so clearly, why did the officiating crew let them do it?

    I don't think it made the Bears look like idiots at all. Remember when Indy tested the impact of the new referee position during the pre-season a couple years ago? That was much more intrusive, and it brought nothing more than a few grumbles. Heck if anyone looked like idiots it was the NFL for not clarifying this rule a long time ago when they had all off-season to do so.

    Also as was discussed in a prior post, I'm not sure the new rule will hurt the Bears as much as conventional wisdom would suggest. I do like Toub testing the limits of what's allowed -- it shows he's constantly thinking of how to best deploy his guys situationally.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Technically mb it should be up to the officials to know if the rule is an option and to enforce it properly, plus if they really wanted to be pricks they could false start once every kickoff

  • In reply to Urlacher FTW:

    There's no false start on kickoffs, but they could probably draw delay of game penalties... which would comically achieve the same effect.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    What an excellent plan!

  • MBP, I'm down with anything youz guyz want to do.

    I just picked up Black Ops, but I also have the MMA game, red dead, and a few others. Whatever you guys are up for... only problem is I can't get sound to work (which greatly diminishes the experience).

    I'm going from my PS3 to my projector via HDMI --> DVI, and I tried going from the PS3 to the projector for sound from the multi AV to the RGB plugs, but nothing seems to work for sound. Any ideas?

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    So, you are trying to send the video signal to the projector via DVI and the audio signal to the projector via AV cables?
    And this is all direct, no switches/receivers in the middle?
    If not, I'm wondering if putting an HDMI switch in the middle would resolve it...but it sounds like it is a common problem when running HDMI from the PS3 into a DVI device - the PS3 evidently shuts the audio signal off when it detects the DVI component.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    hmmmm... so I'm screwed?

    I did try going from the PS3's multi-AV out to the projectors rgb sound and S-video first... that didn't work so I tried the HDMI->DVI

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Does the projector have an optical sound-in? And what do you have the audio out set to in the PS3 system settings?

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Try changing your audio output to "Audio Multi-Output".

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    A couple of other questions,
    1) what audio inputs does your projector have available? Optical?
    2) what is the PS3 system setting for audio set to?

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    You cannot do that. Once the PS3 detects and decides HDMI is the transport, it will push sound that way.

    If you replaced the HDMI cable with the multiAV and don't get sound via the white cable, then it might be something else.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Gee, can we go back to the Federal Reserve or something?

  • In reply to SC Dave:


  • Oh I love the "lets not sign anyone because they'll take reps away from others" strategy. If my coach would have had this mentality I could have played every position and been a one man football team. Of course he didnt because its retarded and he's not Angelo.


  • "Want a corner? Sniff around Philadelphia. "There are going to be some good players we're going to have to let go,'' Andy Reid said Saturday. And not necessarily on waivers. If your team wants Joselio Hanson and has a spare third- or fourth-rounder, the Eagles are probably in a dealing mood."

    No clue about this dude, but yes please. I believe we have a spare one of those... along with no desire for angelo to use it picking up yet another steltz and/or la favor next year.

  • Anybody get an update on Bowman's stinger?

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Nada out there on the interweb that I can find. I thought he'd dislocated his shoulder at first. That was a nasty hit.

  • Bryant McKinnie, Nick Kaczur, Mario Henderson, Max Starks, Flozell Adams, Mark Tauscher and Langston Walker are among the tackles available, and free-agent guards Leonard Davis, Brian Waters, Vince Manuwai, Shawn Andrews and Reggie Wells are still out there.

    Angelo said the Bears wouldn’t close the door on signing another veteran on the offensive line, but he indicated they want to give some of their younger players a chance.

    ‘‘At some point, you have to let these young guys develop,’’ Angelo said. ‘‘You bring in [a veteran], and he takes reps away from Lance Louis. So you know what? This young guy is on the shelf again. At some point, you have to believe in his traits, and then you have to let it play itself out.

    Come on. After watching Lance Louis play on Sat. night, we gotta go get one of those guys.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Agreed - at the very least, the very absolute least, we need better depth and if that means Louis sitting, so be it. He sucked in pass protection.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    fuckin A man your right on that!

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    I almost choked on my beverage when I heard one of the announcers say during the game, "the Bears have added a lot of depth to their O line this year".

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Asiata AND Louis sucked ? Add in CW .... Jebus ... we really don't have any guards ? Mang .... No guards, no Center, one good tackle. Holy bananas.....

  • In reply to gpldan:

    hahah @ Angelo's quote ‘‘At some point, you have to let these young guys develop,’’ but the question lies can you DEVELOPED them properly?

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Just say no to McKinnie, the guy is a turd... and I don't say that about many players.

    Starks, Adams, Tauscher, and I think Henderson are all old and have had recent injury issues to boot. I'm a bit amazed Andrews is still playing -- that guy's been through the wringer. I haven't looked at all those guys listed but I'd venture to say there is probably a reason most or all of those guys are still available.

    Does that mean one or more couldn't help? No. But it's a gamble. So is trusting your coach when he believes he can develop a guy. Either way you lay your bets and then go with it...

    It's clear which path they've committed to taking -- and generally it's the height of folly to start down one path then switch to an entirely new one 1) before you know it won't work, and 2) after all the best options for the other path are already taken.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Leonard Davis was a guy that got mentioned a bit - he sounded like a salary cap casualty, not a broken down old mare.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    I love the photo of angela and Urlacher together. Urlacher is not thinking good thoughts ....

    ‘‘I’m a greed for talent, but you can’t be a glut." said Angelo. Bad grammar and vocabulary apart, if one was greedy for talent then why couldn't you be a glutton? Isn't that the point of football? Having as many good players as you can? Tool.

  • Can someone please clarify Johnny Knox status? is he our # 2 WR or 3 or 4? I saw Williams and the Hester at 2. I will fuckin choke someone is Hester starts in front of Knox.

  • Knox is behind Williams as the X receiver. Hester is the Y receiver so they're considered different positions. I didn't get an impression of Williams saturday night since I was at a draft party and missed most of the game. Regardless, if I were Knox, I'd be pissed. Is he better than Hester? Definitely. Seems to me it should be as easy to shift Knox from X to Y as it is to shift Garza from G to C.

  • In reply to Jokey:

    It's not necessarily that easy to switch positions. For that matter it isn't easy for Garza either -- they only did it because they had to, and because Garza has some experience playing C. Amongst the WRs, only Bennett and the backups have learned/practiced multiple positions.

    But beyond ease, you wouldn't necessarily even want to. The traits you want in an X are not the same as for a Y. And beyond that, what Martz wants in his Y and X is what matters. Anyway Knox is pissed, that much is clear. He should be asking what he needs to do and where he needs to improve to get on the field though, not stewing...

  • In reply to Michael L:

    I don't think he's pouting, which is a good sign. But I do think he's a better receiver than Hester, and that the two have similar body/running styles, and comparable speed.

    Hester's top gear is probably a touch faster, but he doesn't reach that until he's untouched for 15 yards.

  • In reply to Jokey:

    Similar (both are small and fast), but their strengths and weaknesses are very different... as are what's asked of them from their respective positions.

    Knox chief strength is his route-running. Bowen, for example, sees him as the best pure route runner on the team. Knox next best trait is speed but I haven't seen much agility, slipperiness, shake-n-bake, or body control. His most obvious weaknesses are strength, attacking the ball, setting up defenders, using his body against defenders, and maybe awareness/field vision.

    Hester by contrast is not a great route runner (but is getting better every year). However his greatest strength (besides the obvious open field running and vision) is his agility, explosive cuts, and slipperiness. After that comes fantastic body control. Other strengths include ability to set up defenders. He will also attack the ball, has good awareness, and has some ability to physically handle defenders. His biggest weaknesses are route running, defeating the jam, some situational awareness, and techniques for handling defenders on top of him or in stride -- all of which he has improved every year.

    Hester's upside appears still unlimited and he hasn't hit a noticeable wall with any of his weaknesses -- in fact reps and experience has consistently improved all of them. From what I know, the Y position fits his traits very, very well. Who doesn't think he can eventually be better than a Joey Galloway or even a Willie Gault?

    By contrast, Knox's weaknesses are a much bigger concern -- it's not clear they will ever get significantly improved. He's a good receiver for sure, but a great route runner is exactly what you want in an X... but he doesn't have the physical defender handling skills to do everything you want with an X. Plus he just does not fight to protect the QB on badly thrown or semi-dodgy balls. OTOH you have a receiver in Roy Williams who doesn't have those deficiencies. Simply put, they think RW is a better X, and Hester is a better Y. That's Knox's dilemma right now...

  • In reply to Michael L:

    I agree with Jokey on this one. Based on some interviews I've seen, Knox doesn't appear to be angry and is embracing the competition aspect and wants to fight for a strating spot. I believe him when I saw and heard him speak on this. Also, I actually think Hester is a better route runner than Knox (makes sharper cuts, is cleaner on running routes, etc.). Yes, Hester has better lateral action, but Knox can prettty much get away with going straight ahead based on his speed. I also think Knox has the ability to seperate more than Hester for whatever reason. I don't think shake and bakeing is what differentiates an X from a Y. Hester was better on using his body to protect against and box out defenders last year and fought for the jump and bad balls more efficiently than Knox last year. But, overall, I think similarities in body type and speed are enough to make the transition smooth for Johnny. Plus, he's a more pure WR as he's been playing the position his whole football career. Martz may see it as fitting a square peg into a circle, or whatever that saying is, but I don't. Like I said, I would start Knox at WR and move Skunk to full-time KO AND punt return.

  • In reply to Crown:

    Plus, Knox gaining 13 pounds of muscle will help him fight for balls better.

  • In reply to Crown:

    Yeah I think so too. But he still has to prove that it will shore up that weakness in his game.

  • In reply to Crown:

    Having moves isn't the difference between X and Z, but I'd say as a general rule a flanker will have more downfield-oriented routes whereas a split end will run more complex or short/intermediate ones. Running perfectly distanced and timed routes is essential for the X, as is beating the jam because he lines up on the LoS. By contrast, a flanker lines up off the LoS and doesn't necessarily need to be perfect in his route-running but needs to be able to beat defenders.

    Hester may be crisp, but that isn't what makes a route runner. Knox got open more last year because of his precise routes. I trust Matt Bowen's assessment of route running in particular, since he's a former NFL safety that studied WRs for a living, and he watched all of them closely at training camp last year (this year too).

    If you think the transition would be smooth, and Knox would be better at flanker than Hester... why do you think Martz hasn't given him any reps there?

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Solid points and analysis as always, Michael. As for your last sentence, did you forget that this is the guy who went with Todd Collins over Hanie last year?

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Doc: No I haven't forgotten, much to my chagrin... Collins sucked pretty hard, although to be fair he did well in practice and in the pre-season -- so it would be pretty hard to tell he was going to fold so badly in a real game.

    But really there's no defense. However no matter how good you are as an evaluator, there are some you just get totally wrong. Even Belichick swings and misses at times. That doesn't mean Martz's judgment should be written off.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Err, what about his performance against the Panthers in week 5?

    Yes it was just one game, but if I was the coach viewing that situation he would have been out the door before I had even bothered to open it.

    Also, while I am enjoying your analysis, the judgement of Martz should never be consulted in Chicago again...to run through some examples

    (a) never ending fetish for 7 step drops
    (b) bringing in Manboobeluna and continually playing him
    (c) drafting LeFevour (i blame them all for letting the bengals pick him up off the the practice squad)
    (d) drafting Enderle when he could easily convince Bulger to play here for a year or two

    I could say more but thinking about it makes me queazy. And while I hope for the best this season, I hate how invested we are becoming in the Martz offence.

    Other than that, excellent analysis Michael.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    I mean I understand how you felt about the Panthers game (I was appalled too, don't get me wrong)... but coaches can't get in the business of judging by one game. If they reacted like that to every disaster, they'd be out of a job fast.

    He did demote Collins after that game in fact, but a few weeks of practice plus the bye must've convinced him it was an aberration and that Collins would be ready if he needed to go again. Do you go by one game, or an entire career + what you see in practice? Martz isn't even close to the only one who'd go by a career + practice.

    As for your other points, Manu I covered in another post, but the dude's knee was seriously injured and it's obvious now that it never truly recovered from arthroscopic surgery.

    As for Bulger, do you bring him in for top dollar and hold back Hanie yet again? They made a choice to develop him and trust in him... that's why they drafted Enderle and even LeFevour. The whole Collins/LeFevour thing was an emergency detour after Hanie separated his shoulder last pre-season. It just ended up working out poorly because LeFevour looked good in his games and Cincinnati had a ridiculously stupid QB situation. Most of the time, those rookie fifth-rounders make it onto the practice squad. You can't blame Martz for that -- that was a calculate gamble taken by JA that he got unlucky on.

    I understand the desire not to get too invested in Martz. But really this offensive roster still looks pretty good I think even if Martz leaves. Of course, for Jay's sake I'm hoping for continuity and Martz success.

  • I'd start Hester over Knox at the same position.

  • I've got Knox at #5 in terms of talent, Fres.

  • Well as for Webb, I do see some hints of potential but who knows wtf is gonna happen. He is at that point where he has two roads, One to be Good, or the other to be horrible. Which will it be?

    As for Chris Williams, I hate to say it but I believe we have a drafted BUST in our midst. Prepare to be disappointed.

    Chester Taylor is D O N E. DONE!

    Defense all around look great, and I strongly believe it may be a 2005 2006 year. Fingers Crossed!

  • No offense intended but I would much rather prefer an 85 year.

  • Fres, the only two linemen that did NOT get any flak from the Chicago reporters and experts was Williams and Carimi. All the rest took some flak from the reporters that I have heard. I personally thought Williams played a decent game and I think you are a little premature to lay the bust on him.

  • In reply to #76 Mongo Murph:

    I agree Murph. Williams was ok. I want to see all of preseason before I grade that kid out.

  • In reply to #76 Mongo Murph:

    Williams actually did look solid out there. I was shocked. He was a bright spot in an otherwise swiss cheese o-line Saturday.

  • For what it's worth, here's a line grade from the game.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    that was cool. thanks trac.

  • Yes Taylors gone 4th and 3 trainwreck #45 your in!

  • I think Tice gets wooed by what Louis can do on the sled. He's got power in the legs and his punch is good when he lines it up.

    In fairness to him, he was lined up across from Marcell Dareus, and that kid is a monster. 6'3 319 and a power machine. That kid has Bruce Smith ability and can anchor the Bills D this year. But Louis gets owned when he's not firing off the line.

  • In the spirit of kind spirited ribbing our Bears with seems to fast becoming a tradition, I couldn't help myself here.

    Uncle Larry basically says, "move along, nothing to see here".

    I realize it’s only preseason, but nothing about the offensive line showed any indication of improvement the entire game versus the Bills. Every quarterback seemed to be under pressure, on the run and had very little time to make throws. Are we to believe Mike Tice has done anything to protect Jay Cutler this year?


    Not only is it the preseason, but Saturday night’s game was the first time the starting offensive line played together as a unit. Ever. Given the need to build cohesiveness up front, I think it’s important not to draw any conclusions from what transpired in the first half against the Bills. Plus you can’t put all the sacks on the line; the quarterback not getting rid of the ball also factors in to some of those plays. Are there concerns about the pass protection? Absolutely, especially after last season. But let’s allow this to play out and see what transpires the rest of the preseason. And while the pass protection was shaky Saturday night, the line did an excellent job of run blocking at times as the Bears rushed for 164 yards.

    How did Major Wright fare in Saturday’s preseason opener? I was unable to watch the game.

    Robert H.
    Madison, Wisconsin

    I thought free safety Major Wright did an excellent job. He was all over the field and made three great open-field tackles on the first two possessions. As I’ve said before, the biggest question with Wright is durability, especially given his hard-hitting style of play. If he can stay healthy, I have no doubt that he’ll be a big asset this season defending the run and the pass.

    When I first learned of Brad Maynard's departure I was most concerned about the breakup of the excellent Mannelly-Maynard-Gould field goal team. Considering Gould's two misses Saturday night, one of them from close range, is this something to be worried about?

    Erik G.
    Cheyenne, Wyoming

    I wouldn’t worry about it. The 56-yard field goal attempt Robbie Gould missed had enough distance, it just drifted slightly wide right. And the 33-yarder came with undrafted rookie punter Spencer Lanning as the holder. I have confidence that Adam Podlesh—who has replaced Brad Maynard as the punter and holder—will do fine in both roles. He previously served as a holder for kicks with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Pudlush Sucked balls. Hopefully he gets better, but from what i saw of him he had a major case of "pussy leg" going on where his labia were sticking to the sides of his legs making it impossible to get any distance on his punts...

  • hee hee

  • Minora or majora? I missed the game...

  • Want to see a bust? This is a bust:


  • In reply to gpldan:

    "Maybe" the Bears will call him?

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Haha, cute, except:


    I'm not sure what I think of this... =)

  • Lions could be a problem this year, and how about the shout out to Scrappy at the end of this article...


  • In reply to gpldan:

    I don't think it's a sign of fear or weakness to acknowledge your adversary's strength gp. I think they will give us and GB a run for the money this year. Like I said a couple of days ago, "be very concerned about the Lions". Swartz is my kinda coach.

  • GP, MBP, thanks for the help... I'm in bidniz!!! I had only set one of the PS3 outputs to multi-avi. There was a second. I changed it and immediately started hearing the clicking of menu navigation. OORAH!

    Ok, now on to business gents. Where, what game, and when? MB30SD's the name, let's set up a showdown.

    Oh, and animal control just removed (forcibly) a 4' rattler from my yard. Fucker almost killed one of my pups (the dumb one who didn't think that deafening sound of a nasty rattle meant NOT to bark and bite at the thing). Man those things are mean looking.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    dang man, a 4' rattler? yow, good thing that's gone...

  • In reply to Michael L:

    yeah Michael, it was nasty. Never been that close to a live/free one... scary snake. The head of that thing was huge.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    That's what she said.

  • In reply to GuinnessPlease:


    Well played, well played.

  • In reply to GuinnessPlease:

    to be honest Guinni... I was actually leaving that one putting over the center of the plate for the coach to hit out of the park. I actually pictured it in my head.

    Didn't expect it to come from you. Maybe a sneak attack by Crown or Doc, but not you.

    Well done.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Awesome - glad I didn't return COD-BO today (no time at lunch).
    I'll look you up on the network in a bit - keep an eye out for deadrabbit or some variation thereof.
    At least they rattle, I guess; evidently we have cottonmouths out here. Man do I hate snakes.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    I have to agree with Shady MBP. After just a couple hrs, it's definitely not the revolution it was billed to be. Basically like the last one with different maps.

    Any you guys played “Black”? Great FPS. I am looking forward to checking our red dead too. Any other suggestions?

    Yeah, them’s nasty too. They do shake their tail like a rattler though... I seen it on the tv. (I seriously can't watch enough Swamp People... Troy sings when he speaks. It's magic)

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    While I own an xbox and not a PS3, I would recommend Heavy Rain, its a bit slow to begin with but it picks up and I've heard nothing but good things about it.

    If you want a non-serious game I would possibly try Dead Rising 2. One of the most random games out there.

    I could think of more but thats all I've got off the top of my head.

    PS Red Dead is a very good game beware online though, as people who have been playing it for ages will spawn kill you until you reach the verge of throwing your console through the tv.

  • In reply to DYLbear23:

    I recomend putting the controller down and fucking a real live women, with your penis.

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Snakes and jellyfish are not cool.

  • Oh, and this should give Irish some gas: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/15/opinion/stop-coddling-the-super-rich.html?_r=1&src=tp&smid=fb-share

  • In reply to MB30SD:

    I don't care how much of an "investing legend" you are Warren, it's the spending, stupid.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    Actually, he's pretty smart - maybe he's just part of the Illuminati franchise that's running the Fed for the Rothchilds - but no, just raising revenue by a few billion doesn't solve the larger deficit problem.
    You know what also doesn't? Just about every economic policy I've seen put forth and enacted by people calling themselves "fiscal conservatives" since I've been old enough to read a newspaper.
    It doesn't "kill jobs" to take a larger cut of capital gains, and it's sure not morally or economically satisfactory for a guy with $50 billion in net worth to pay about half of the marginal rate that I do.
    So, maybe rather than gutting good social programs to preserve his marginal rate, since we won't or can't address our health care problem in a serious fashion, we could raise his rate SINCE HE"S VOLUNTEERING TO PAY IT.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    He's volunteering himself (supposedly) but not all his billion dollar compatriots. If he was genuinely volunteering himself, he could just send the IRS a bigger check... which obviously he doesn't.

    Anyway the problem is that even raising his rate won't stop the need to gut programs. As you said, raising revenue by a few billion won't solve anything -- and that's all this move would do. $5.698 billion to be exact, using Warren's numbers... which is basically a drop in the bucket. That won't even pay for the year-on-year increase for some of these programs. So this is really a red herring (or a PR move).

    But you're absolutely right that (almost) nobody talk about solutions that actually might work -- by either crappy party. Even this "deal" is a joke -- it doesn't cut actual spending at all, it only "cuts" against a baseline of increased future spending. So it isn't reducing the deficit... it isn't even keeping the deficit from widening -- it only slows down (slightly) how fast it's widening! And that's assuming these promises are even kept, which they probably won't since it's almost all backloaded on a 10 year schedule!

    No, the problem is most definitely spending, and there is no real effort being made to change it. I realize there aren't any true simple answers or solutions. You know what's really insane though? We could have zero deficit right now -- a balanced budget -- if we just rolled back spending to 2006 levels. 2006! Seriously, we're talking trillion dollar deficits and as a nation we can't fathom living on a budget from 5 years ago?

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Thank the guys in the tinfoil hats that screamed about socialized medicine two years ago, and on the other side, the K-street guys who lobbied for Big Insurance that managed to leave us with a broken health care system.

    And two and a half extremely expensive wars that were supposed to pay for themselves.

    And a recession that was largely driven by Wall Street and Main Street deciding that if a little debt is good, then 30x that debt is event better.

    I understand the point you''re making - the problem is that the nondiscretionary part of the budget has exploded in the last five years - hence you can't just roll it back. To take that money off the spending side of the ledger, you have to take it all out of discretionary programs - which guts our social and physical infrastructure.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    All that is true, but it isn't just that. Even the total cost of the Iraq war as of last year or so (~8 years running) clocked in around or under $1T. That's not even the size of today's deficit. The wars were unnecessary and enriching to a few big powers at a cost to the American people, but really it masks the problem of 1) ballooning budgets, and 2) constant addition of hundreds and thousands of new programs every year.
    The recession was terrible of course, but again most of the profiteering off TARP and Fed/Treasury intervention was a one-time expenditure. It doesn't explain the insane budget deficit today.
    Yeah, I understand that both sides have ballooned since 2006. But not all of the discretionary is critical infrastructure (not even close I suspect), and also I think we need to be real and understand non-discretionary benefits need to be cut back moving forward and in some case possibly phased out entirely. (Non-discretionary doesn't mean it can't be touched, nor its structure changed... just that it isn't voted on as part of the annual budget.)
    As I said, there aren't easy solutions. But I think too many people are trying to either bury their head in the sand while crying foul or else leverage the problem to win political favors... and nobody is seriously tackling the real problem -- that not just today's spending, but the future trajectory of spending, is simply unsustainable.
    No social program will be any good if it breaks down the system. I know conceptually people just haven't accepted the idea of running out of money -- we can always tax somebody to get it, or just print more right? But right now we as a country are doing the national equivalent of running up a big credit card and only making minimum payments. Our debt is now a sizable fraction of our _total_household_wealth_ -- that's the value of liquidating every lock, stock, and barrel in the entire country. This is bad enough except there's no sign of even freezing the deficit, much less shrinking it, much less eliminating it, much less actually paying down any of the debt.
    I know it's always wrong to sound off alarm bells, because somehow they figure out ways to circumvent things, cut deals, and delay the worst of the damage to someone else's term... but there's just no way this is going to disappear without eventually facing some hard truths.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    Exactly Dave. If you make $60,000 and spend $100,000 a year for three straight years, you will have a debt crisis.
    Warren is probably also a hypocrite. I'm sure he spends huge sums of money on tax attorneys to find every tax break he can get away with every year. I'm sure when he flies to a dinner party in New York it is classified as a "business expense."
    I WAS friends with a real estate developer who makes millions a year and pays NO taxes. He was a very powerful player in Wisconsin politics until Walker took over. He met with Governor Doyle (Democrat) a few times a month and was on the Building and Planning Commission. State and local politicians were kissing his ass all the time because this commission decided what projects got funded. He used to take family vacations all the time on private jets (including kids and grandkids) and they were all "business" expenses, because he could afford the right tax attorneys. Small business owners can't do that. When I called him out on this issue on a snowmobile trip a few years ago, he got pissed and refuses to return my calls ever since. I guess everyone else should pay more taxes for the betterment of society, except for him. From what I've heard, his love of Obama hasn't worked out so well for him. The millions a year are going in the opposite direction now, as in losses. I guess it's not a smart to push policies that cause large businesses to close shop in your community, lowering the value of your real estate. You make your own bed, you can sleep in it.

  • In reply to TheFifth:

    What exactly was your point? Rich people tend to be tax-dodgers and douchebags? Sounds like you're running in the wrong crowd.

  • In reply to TheFifth:

    The solution is clearly to eliminate corporate taxes on all businesses. After all, businesses never pay tax, they only collect it on behalf of the government - and in the process waste untold billions on totally non-productive work like filling out tax forms and paying tax lawyers to dodge the rules instead of figuring out how to beat the Chinese or Malaysians, or Indians, or whomever.

    I suggest people unfamiliar read the FairTax. Coupled with an immediate decade long freeze on federal spending at one half this year's levels, it MIGHT give us a chance to avoid the meltdown of America.

    Are you running with the wrong crowd Posse? It sure looks like envy dripping from your post.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    Hardly. All you mentioned was how the millionaire buddy was a prick.
    Weird how tax reform was never a priority this year during the whole debt ceiling meltdown.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    The problem with the statement "Rich people", is that the term is totally subjective. In my case, as a business owner, I went to the bank with hard earned equity that I had scraped and saved up over 10, 15 years. I am still in the process of paying off my loan and even though I have built up equity over the years through paying down my bank note, my annual salary/take home pay is about the same as a full time McDonalds employee. According to the government, because my loan is being slowly paid down and equity is being built up in my company, I am considered rich and am thrown into a tax bracket that quite frankly is burdensome. Every dollar earned has the bank and governments name on it first and I'm the last to get paid. Now I'm not complaining, just stating a fact. Owning a small business that technically meets a certain tax bracket criteria is very deceiving and the threat of more burdensome tax thresholds is very discouraging to small business owners who spend most of their lives working for peanuts just to be able to pass something onto his children when day. Most people don't understand how this works and I suggest that we should be very careful when making assessments as to who is rich.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Kudos man. This country could use more people like you, willing to take risks to bring something valuable to the community. It's a group of people that used to be much more common, but is disappearing as they worked over (bent over) by the system supporting our government.

    Once that class truly disappears, I really don't know what things will look like.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Evidently my sarcasm was lost in translation. My point was that I didn't get much out of Dave's post other than that he had a millionaire friend who sounded like a hypocritical jerk. I couldn't extrapolate anything else from the tale other than "rich people are...".
    If we want to talk tax policy, fine - but anecdotes don't do much.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Thanks for your comments Brownie. I really wasn't trying to oppose anyone's point of view, I was just hitting the subject from an angle that even I didn't understand prior to starting my own company. The reason I think this is such a hot button topic is because all sides of the discussion have valid concerns. I always think of Rodney Daingerfield in "Back to School" when he confronts the professor on the practical truths of running a business and I laugh because even though that scene was very funny, there is a lot of truth to how Daingerfield explains the ins and outs of running a business. There's book knowledge and then there's practical application. I just think the practical application viewpoint has been trampled and discarded as myth when in all actuality its the textbook approach that is the more often the myth.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    No doubt - I understand the difference, believe me. I think there's a real danger in conflating small business owners with the ultra-wealthy.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    I'd seriously like to hear your rationale for the statement that corporations never pay taxes.

    And while we're on the subject, please explain to me how you'd cut the federal budget, discretionary and non-discretionary, in half and not cause the "meltdown" that you think is around the bend.

    You also buy into Irish's gold-bug manifesto too, don't you? I've yet to hear one of you explain how you have a static money supply and not throttle the American economy with massive inflation - forgetting the absolute ludicrousness of switching on to the gold standard at any point in time, much less in the middle of a massive global recession.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Ask GE why they didn't pay one dime of taxes last year when the company made more profits then ever before? Than my friends is called corporate welfare which is a totally different animal. I'm not saying this doesn't happen with other businesses, only Washington is incapable of using discernment as to who is doing this. The problem that business owners have with people decrying foul is that the small business owners run the risk of being thrown under the bus when addressing these giant companies tax loopholes that milk the system. Washington has a hard time administering practical solutions to these problems without causing more problems and that is what business owners are concerned about.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Sorry, Trac, that was directed at SC Dave and that the universal statement that corporations don't pay taxes.
    I agree wholeheartedly with your other comments.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    No problem Brownie. I enjoy this kind of dialogue.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    I really should just stay out of these political digressions, but I guess I'll take a stab...
    For your first question -- my guess is Dave was implying that corporations basically pass on corporate taxes directly to their customers. Hence he asks why not just tax them directly and avoid the indirect system which costs billions in compliance and enforcement (an entire essentially non-productive industry)? No loopholes and no complex code would mean no IRS, no tax compliance industry, no tax courts, and much less burden on all businesses (particularly small ones).
    Halving the budget would be quite tough, no doubt. It might cause a meltdown perhaps, but a very different kind than the one we're trying to avoid. The rate of increase in spending every year is widening the deficit and compounding the total debt, requiring China and others to finance it. When they stop becoming willing to do so, it's not just a matter of a system shock of having the spigot turned off. Serious problems will ensure, more akin to defaulting on a mortgage, but worse. Tightening the belt now though would be a shock too, but more like the spigot flowing less freely. It'd be like a recession, but it wouldn't affect our standing with creditors the same way which is a big difference. If the US stops being the world's reserve currency, and if T-bonds suddenly become heavily discounted... prepare to see prices literally go through the roof.
    Now halving might be seriously tough, and perhaps unnecessary. But who knows? A good start would just be to roll back to 2006 spending levels -- just 5 years ago. That would eliminate the deficit immediately. Then finding less painful ways to cut spending and ease into a smaller budgets might leave a lot less people hurt in the wake. Definitely some of the "rich folks" could step up and try to help people who slip through the cracks or fall short of making ends meet.
    As for the gold standard -- it's not a panacea. However your characterization is a bit off. A gold standard doesn't mean a static money supply. It means the government (or Fed) has limits on how much money it can issue. That doesn't cause price inflation -- actually it tends to cause slight price (and wage) deflation over time. That's the chief argument against it. In fact every time we've weakened the gold standard (finally breaking 100% free in 1971), significant price inflation took effect.
    In a nutshell, when money is not tied to something of relatively fixed value, it becomes free to be valued at whatever the market views it at. That's why price inflation happens. Invariably too much money is created (because the temptation is too high) and that dilutes the dollar's value, driving prices up. Even in the rare instances where the money supply is contracted, prices don't go back down because nobody believes the situation will be permanent (and they are right). The end result is that the purchasing power of the dollar only goes in one direction -- down. Thus poor and middle class people keep losing ground, even as they get raises. They are working more hours today (and in a majority 2 worker homes now vs 1 worker before) to bring home less purchasing power than in the 70s. This is seriously messed up when you consider how much technology has improved the achievable quality of life since then. The biggest justification for the gold (or any commodity) standard isn't for big-picture economic "stability" but it's to keep the rich from robbing the poor -- i.e. simple economic justice. The rich are the ones that benefit massively disproportionately from an unrestrained printing press. (However, a backed dollar helps but isn't enough -- to fix the problem you need to eliminate or at least put a check on fractional reserve lending.)
    Anyway, sorry for those that don't care to read about this political/economic shit. Can we get back to the football talk? =)

  • In reply to Michael L:

    You're right - I mischaracterized the gold standard by saying it would cause "inflation".
    Deflation was the correct term.

    You would not agree that it's a non-starter?

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Well it's a non-starter, but not because it would cause some sort of disaster or panic. Well rich bankers with their array of polis in their pockets might panic a little... =)
    It's a non-starter because nobody who is in a position of power stands to benefit in the short or medium term by such a change. The Fed does not want restraints. The regional banks do not want restraints. The bank owners don't want restraints. The friends of bank owners, and the movers and shakers on Wall Street who benefit from the free flow (and preferential flow) of capital do not want restraints. The well-heeled big business corporatists do not want restraints. Therefore politicians backed by such people do not want restraints. Am I sounding like a broken record yet? =)
    Bottom line is that it's a non-starter, but only because 90%+ of politicians are owned by banking/finance interests either directly or indirectly through the party fund. If the public actually understood it and cared, maybe that could overcome those odds... but only a small percentage of people even understand how the system works. Of those that do, a large fraction of them are wooed by Keynesian nonsense or central banking propaganda that reassures them that a centrally managed monetary policy not only stabilizes and protects our economy, but is essential -- we _need_ those levers to control the economy. So yes unless any of that changes, it is a non-starter.

  • In reply to SC Dave:



  • In reply to IrishSweetness:

    And if 'The Secret of Oz' was shown to every American, this nightmare is over within weeks. Once people knew what was actually happening, and what the fed is, it's all over. It's entirely available on Youtube.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    Smaller business owners should get the tax breaks, large corporations should be the ones that get hit. Tax the rich instead of hurting the ones that can't afford it. Proportionally the corporations aren't going to 'hurt'. They just make less massive profits.

  • "According to sources, Larry Fitzgerald has a clause in his contract that prevents the team from using the franchise tag on him. Larry Fitzgerald is in the final year of his 4 yr/40 mil. extension." -ESPN

    Jerry...what the fuck are you waiting on? Give Ginny a kiss on her lips (not the ones on her face) and sign that man.

  • In reply to FQD1911:

    Bring a dust broom.

  • Tonight's Bear Trivia Question:

    Last guy to wear #24 before Marion Barber.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    give me a hint. Was it in the last decade?

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Jerry Azumah,

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Azumah was 23

  • In reply to gpldan:


  • In reply to gpldan:

    Another meaningless signing. Gee, thanks a lot gp.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    I take it he played in the game where a dumbass personal foul on a punt cost us a win....I vaguely recall that stupid loss, much like several other stupid losses that year.

  • In reply to gpldan:

    Dave Williams?

  • Slow news day if ESPN is keeping this stupid story going...


  • Well I agreed not to be negative, but c'mon. Thank you MB for basically putting my thoughts into words earlier. The o-line is crap and management is a joke. Angelo is banking on Tice to bail him out of this mess, the only problem is Martz is running the show and he just can't help himself. He's even showing Enderle as the 2nd string QB:


    Enderle showed some skills with the arm, but he looked like the human statue Todd Collins.

    Might as well add my two cents regarding the PS3. The best thing about COD are the Zombies. You need a slayer for Kino der Toten? All you do is call your boy Shady. The multiplayer is just okay, there are a lot of people (kids) who do their own thing instead of working as a team. The spawning is rapid so games go very quickly if you get a bunch of kids who haven't taken their meds and run around getting wasted. The campaign isn't bad, but it's not great - even a bit confusing until the end. Overall it's a good game, but the COD franchise has so many followers they can release anything and it will sell. Personally, I can't wait for Battlefield: 3 - it's going to be like Christmas on Oct. 25th when it releases.

  • In reply to Shady:

    Per Hanie/Enderle

    Marv Levy said, "if you start listening to the fans on how to run your team, it won't take long before you find yourself sitting with them".

    Martz will do what Martz want's to do.

  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    That's the problem, Martz doing what he WANTS to do not what he NEEDS to do.

  • In reply to Shady:

    Still haven't checked Battlefield out on the PC, but COD Modern Warfare 2 was pretty cool.

  • Is it ironic the Bears challenged a rule implemented for player safety and the play resulted in a player injury?

  • In reply to Shady:

    Toub was asked about that -- his response was the rule was to reduce concussions and Wootton injured his knee. I.e. one had nothing to do with the other.

    Of course you could say it's ironic anyway from a karma standpoint, which maybe it was.

  • In reply to Shady:

    No, it's the exact opposite of ironic.

  • In reply to Ufficio:

    Heh, good point. Phrased the way it was, it is indeed the opposite of ironic.

  • Could not watch the game, so stuck with reading articles and blogs. But don't need to be a rocket scientist to understand that 4 MF sacks allowed by our starting Oline in one half is completely unacceptable. Where the hell is the accountability? If Tice doesn't make some moves I really doubt his knighthood as a great Oline coach. Did Spencer look OK? I read Garza got bitch slapped for a sack. At some point Tice must show his hand, does he tow the company line or start asserting himself. If Cutler loses life and limb due to Oline, I place blame on Tice too, seems he's beyond reproach for some reason. I am stoked about the Barbarian, and can't wait for him to steamroll Woodson and the rest of the F Packs secondary on 10 + yard runs.

  • In reply to GuinnessPlease:

    How many hurries were there? If Cutler gets happy feet because he knows Webb or whoever is totally untrustworthy .... then we know what happens there ... and it's not good.

  • It's Monday, time for the Packers to get their wet, sloppy Peter King BJ


  • In reply to gpldan:

    No going there. Reading Peter King feels way too much like feeding a troll.

  • can someone explain why garza can only call the blocking schemes from center, i have never played organized football....does it look so different from guard, that it can't be done......i am hopin garza is just getting reps for future plan B's if spencer can't go

  • In reply to huntinbare:

    The short answer is that he has to communicate out calls to the entire line -- from the center that's 2 players away max... 3 if you include the TE. From a G spot, that's 3 and 1 away.

    The other reason is that the view is different. From C you can see the entire defensive front better. From G your view of the other side is much more obscured.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    thanks... i was thinkin that would be it.everything happens so fast i am suprised any planned order or call holds up. can lesser players really learn to funtion as a unit and continually outplay the superior players.....will carimi's side of the line be the path of choice on short yardage situations

  • To those who have been ignoring reports from all camp observers that the WR standing out most so far this year is Hester, or at least doubting it... here's Hanie now weighing in:


    I know some of you want to see him fail as a WR (which personally I just don't understand), but I think at minimum you have to acknowledge that he still has significant upside.

    Meanwhile, it seems like Knox has been handling the demotion like a pro -- focusing on taking care of business. Recent articles make it clear he never suggested he was thinking trade and that was purely the media (kudos to Drake on an awesome testy exchange and defense of Knox). I think Knox will be alright...

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Hurd has made some amazing snags from the few reps he gets. Williams looks solid from what I've seen. But it will all come down to what happens behind that line ....

    Does anyone on here want to see Hester fail? If he catches it in the open, he's our #1 weapon I would have thought ....

    Knox bitched loud and hard from what I read. I'm okay with him on ST duty.

  • I definitely don't want Skunk to fail at WR. We paid him big reciever money. I really hope he succeeds and was arguing on this blog that we should be patient with him and that he showed reciever potential last yr. I just think Knox is a pure reciever that will prove his worth this year. He had big stats last year and I like what he's done in the off-season. You and I know there is a big difference between looking good in practice and doing it on game day.

    Plus, I don't fully trust Martz's talent evaluation after the Collins queef last yr. I think the guy gets so adament on what he thinks works, that he becomes inflexible. His ego limits his ability to be objective. Many pedestrian fans could see that Hanie should have been #2 the whole season last yr, but the Wiz was determined to have a back-up QB, because "that works" in his system.

    Now, there's this: http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/football/bears/chi-bears-hanie-upset-after-yielding-secondteam-reps-to-enderle-20110815,0,145502.story

    For once I agree with Shady's football opinion that Enderle looked to actually be Collins but 20 years younger. This guy will not make it in the league. Absolutely NO mobility or ability to get away w/ pressure. I don't know how he thought he looked better than Hanie.
    ManofMoohlah was Martz's guy, we could have gotten Boldin with similar type paper.

    I just don't trust Martz fully on some position decisions, even though Lovie and Jerry are all in on him. Sometimes, you have to overllok the system in favor of talent.

  • In reply to Crown:

    Hanie had a few throws where he looked to be way jacked up on adrenaline. There was an out that he threw five feet over the receivers head after a big completion.
    I think Enderle has potential; granted, with this O-line, I'll take the mobile guy over the slow-footed one, but he showed flashes. And maybe Martz is just a sadistic a-hole but I think Hanie will be the #2 when it's all said and done. They are just intent on making it a difficult path.

  • In reply to MikeBrownhadaPosse:

    Martz is just flexing his muscles. Hanie wasn't his guy. That's the coaching way. Right or wrong, these guys like to die by their own hand, not someone else's.

  • In reply to Crown:

    I understand your viewpoint, but a couple errors.

    1. First off Hester did not get big receiver money. A significant fraction (at least 25%) of the money depends on him actually performing like a big receiver. What he got was a 4 year extension to the remaining 2 years on his rookie contract which 1) raised his sub $300k salary for those 2 years to something respectable, 2) rewarded him for way out-performing his contract, 3) ensured at minimum he'd be the highest paid special teams player which everyone agreed he deserved, and 4) included a bit extra + a hefty incentive to reflect their plan to try him out at WR. This deal was heavily misrepresented by the media.

    Ok, actually looking at the contract details again, it's actually 46% of the new money that is based on performance. The non-performance-based money was $22m, or $3.7m per year. $3m/year was the "highest ST salary" target, so basically they paid him $700k/year extra to be a WR. That's not big receiver money. He can earn up to $19m extra, which would take him to $6.8m per year -- which IS big receiver money -- but he has to earn it.

    2. Knox is a pure receiver, but one with deficiencies. That's okay because he's still very young, so he should improve. But don't pretend they aren't there. We all saw what they were. I listed most of them. Besides that he made a lot of mental errors -- perhaps more than we know -- that led to picks, 2 receivers running to the same spot, etc. Martz may be stubborn in handling it, but he's not wrong in his assessment.

    3. Taking some reps for one day doesn't mean Martz thought Enderle looked better than Hanie. It means he thought he played well enough to deserve to get some reps.

    4. Boldin signed a 4 year, $28m contract ($10m guaranteed). Manu signed a 5 year, $15m contract ($6m guaranteed). Not even close. Manu's guaranteed money doesn't even pay for _one_year_ of Boldin's contract.

    5. Manu was Martz's guy, but he had major knee damage. He failed his physical and got cut. It's clear the arthroscopic surgery he had before last season was a bigger deal than anyone thought. Credit to everyone for cutting losses. Aren't people always complaining about the FO keeping and playing "big money" players that underperform? Can't have it both ways.

    But yes, I do believe Knox is good and will improve. But I have no problems with coaches putting the best players for each position in, and lighting some fire under the players that have serious deficiencies that need improving to prevent big negative plays. As good as Knox was, his mistakes cost the team big too.

  • In reply to Michael L:

    Great post Mike. Hurd has way more upside for me than Knox though. Bigger and smarter too.

  • Veteran back-up

  • I thought both knox and the skunk made some pretty incredible and important catches last year.

    I do think we needed a 'real' WR to take the pressure off those two lightweights. As we all know, Knox is NOT the guy to be fighting to any balls. Let him be the long-ball threat that he was all last year.

    Millions of hits! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_VEfbCuiCI

  • I watched two village idiots from the 4-letter network talk about which teams made the best off-season acquisitions and I'm dumber after watching it. Mark Schlerich said the Texans made a great move by getting a great safety, Danniel Manning. The dumber Skip Bayliss thought the Vikings did a better job than the Bears because they got McNabb, and that it puts them in contention for the NFC Championship. Bayliss also said the Patriots had the best off-season because the got 8-5 and Haynesworth. These two must be taking way too many prescription medications.

  • I reluctantly agree with Michael L's point #3. Enderle got reps because he played well enough to be given more reps. Hanie is not in trouble. Yet.

    I finally watched the game. You've all hit on most of the positives and negatives, so I'll just say a few things.

    I love our D-line. Man we have a lot of good players. I feel bad for Wooten but I'm hearing 4 weeks for him, which isn't too bad. We have a lot of good players there. Who do we let go? I say, we keep Pep, Idonije, Melton, Toe, Paea, Adams, Okoye, and Wooten. Who else? Gholston? Harrison's toast. With the push up the middle we got on Saturday night, we should have a much improved pass rush.

    We have three very good running backs. And Chester Taylor. Bye bye Chester. If we put Bell on the practice squad, he WILL get claimed. But who for fullback now that Olsen is gone? Joke.

    Jay got skinny because he knew he'd have to run for his life this year. I saw him scramble for a first down and look good doing it. Work on the slide Jay. Jay is pissed and will prove all doubters wrong. Rex, meanwhile, will prove all doubters right, and Kyle Orton; also wrong.

    I liked what I saw out of Pringles. I didn't see a ton, but I do think we'll see him make some plays this year. From what I'm hearing, Conte is good, and Steltz is thus, expendable. Your ribs can rest easy Peanut. With the pressure our line is sure to create, our secondary will be just fine.

    Our linebacking crew is solid. We have a very good lb crew. I never heard though, is Pisa still around?

    Our specials still look very special.

    I loved the running lanes our O-line created. For this improvement alone, we'll be much better on offense this year. If only Martz realizes this.

    In short, based on one measly meaningless game and large volumes of kool-aid consumption, I'm getting pumped.

    I love football.

  • In reply to Doc Nitty 34:

    I am concerned about depth at LB, but other than that I think the defense will be just fine, especially assuming we get that middle rush you mention.

    But gad, who are Dom DiCicco and J.T. Thomas?

    And I'll stick by my prediction that if RW comes to play, Hester makes the Pro Bowl - at WR.

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    JT Thomas is an athletic OLB outta WV. He's slotted as Roach's backup but has shown nothing so far

  • In reply to SC Dave:

    And Mike Holmes at DB .... nice.

    Our Boy Roy - The good, the bad and the ugly from the Bills game.


  • In reply to IrishSweetness:

    Why no love for Eddie Williams Jeff? Roy thought he had a great game, and he looks like an awesome blocker from the vid.

  • In reply to Doc Nitty 34:

    I'll buy all of that for a dollar, Doc. Especially the last line.

    And Enderle is getting more looks pre-season. Good. He needs them more than Hanie. I don't think there's anyway that makes him #2 come game one though. People will read too much into that. protecting numero uno is way more important.

  • THANK YOU for the Cherry Pie video, Jani Lane. RIP.

  • I spent a week in the Natty one day, and it's all true: the city actually hates it's NFL franchise. It's weird. The team should be disbanded and the slot awarded to a new L.A. team, because Brown is the biggest loser... goodbye


  • In reply to gpldan:

    Tee hee

    "In about 15 minutes of real time, the rookie quarterback had thrown an interception on his first professional pass. A fumble had been lost on a kickoff return. The Detroit Lions led by two touchdowns. I mean, the Detroit Lions. A doormat shouldn't be able to wipe its feet. Not even on another doormat. I needed to lie down in a cool place."

    btw, that... "A fumble had been lost on a kickoff return".. was scrappy doo. Go Scrappy!

  • In reply to gpldan:

    ouch,,,that's going to leave a mark...

  • from Da Site:

    “I played for a long time and I don’t know that I ever had that problem,” Tice said. “I have a problem with that personally, from a personal standpoint, at a player that’s saying he didn’t have the intensity level. After sitting around for five months you should have plenty of intensity built up inside you. I’m a little disappointed about that. I heard about that comment.

    This is what we get when you have LovieFest for training camp!

    LDL producing Limp Biscuits and I'm not talking about the band.

  • In reply to lobotobear:

    the other Limp Bizbit:


  • In reply to lobotobear:

    I meant Bizkit...."f"ing fingers

  • In reply to lobotobear:

    I don't know man. I think this whole "soft Lovie camp" notion is way overblown. You do realize that just about every coach runs the same kind of low-contact camp right? Not to mention the CBA now says no more two-a-days and mandates days off during camp. Yeah, he may not run a tough camp (certainly nothing like those of yesteryear), but seriously nobody does anymore...

  • any interest?


  • In reply to MB30SD:

    Whassup MB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    not sure why they let him go seeing Brees had great things to say about him, but this worries me:

    However, he played in pain for much of last season, after which he had surgery to repair a torn left quad muscle. Because of the lockout, he was unable to rehabilitate the injury at Saints headquarters, instead splitting time with the Georgia Bulldogs' training staff and with a private trainer in suburban New Orleans.

  • In reply to lobotobear:

    but then again our lines sucks

  • In response to Michael:

    Hester received 15 mill plus a 5 mill signing bonus. He's getting paid like a #2 WR; definitely out of the realm of specials players. Yes, there is a lot in incentives, but he's in a receiver type contract in regards to paper. When I said big receiver money, I didn't mean #1 type money.

    I was overreacting to the Enderle getting more snaps, but who doesn't overreact on here. I also agree with you all that Hanie will still end up being the back-up. I still don't think Enderle can play in this league unless he has a true upper echelon (like top 1 or 2) o-line to protect him. He's just too slow.

    I knew Boldin got paid a lot more than ManofMoohlah when I wrote my post. I am just pissed that he didn't work out. Maybe that money goes to convincing Boldin to sign a 2 or 3 yr deal early on in the FA period and Pep helps w/restructuring. I know that is overly-optimistic. I'm just pissed Manu didn't work.

    If you go back and look at Jay's INTs, I bet we find that Skunk was responsible for around the same amount as Knox. I consider last yr to be the rookie years for both 23 and 18, as skunk was learning a new position. To me, Knox showed way more potential. He reminds me a bit of Desean. I said a little bit. Let's see what happens this year.

  • In reply to Crown:

    Understood, we all get emotional here at times, myself included =).
    1. Keep in mind that was renegotiating for 6 years... $20M over 6 years is not that huge for a receiver. The operating parameters thrown around at the time was $3M/year would be his "value" as just a ST player (clocking him just a bit over the highest paid kickers at the time) and that $5M/year would be his "value" if he were a solid, consistent starter on offense. The challenge was finding a good middle ground that rewarded him for ST play, gave him something extra for playing WR, with incentives if he performed like a top-flight one. Personally I think they made close to a perfect contract. $3.7M/year, with incentives that could take him up to $6.8M/year, a decent-size but not outrageous signing bonus and only modest guaranteed money. This idea that he got #1 WR money (not saying you said that, but that is what lots of fans say and journalists imply), and that management plays him just because of that investment, is just so far from the truth.
    The simple fact is that he was going to get around $3M/year just to play ST and nobody at the time thought that number was outrageous. He got a modest bump up to $3.7M plus big incentives to give him a chance at WR and then everyone goes crazy. It's always bugged me.
    2. As for laying blame on Jay's picks, you could be right. I'm sure Martz and the coaches know the actual breakdown. But Knox's ones were obvious to fans at least. That coupled with their comments make it clear they feel he has a lot still to work on, and right at the top of that list has been the word "consistency". That to me is coach-speak for mistakes.
    Obviously Hester made mistakes too, but taking all the information available together, I'd guess that his were less critical and less vexing to coaches. Mistakes in running wrong routes or giving up on routes or not coming back to the QB for the ball... those are the kind that lead to turnovers, in particular for the X receiver. Although to be fair, Hester's mistakes may have just been easier for Jay to spot. Either way though, I think it's pretty presumptuous for us to think that we are in better position to evaluate Knox and Hester then Martz and his staff.
    I still think Knox is a good receiver and a good kid, and he may yet still beat out RW at the X spot -- if not now then potentially mid-season. But forcing him to improve his technique won't end up being a bad thing for him I suspect. Heck, if nothing else, making him feel he earned his spot over the more complete vet should change his attitude about giving up on plays and see him finish every down.

  • This is the shit that Cutty should have posted in his locker to get pissed of everyday..and then shove it down the media's throat when we win it all.

  • In reply to lobotobear:

    and then you have this shit:


  • In reply to lobotobear:

    Two years ago I would have agreed with labeling Cutty as an all too expensive gamble, never a fraud. Last year it became obvious to me that he grew in the position even behind a bad line. This year will be the proof in the pudding I think. To throw around the word "fraud' so loosely is laughable. I see articles like that for what they are Lobo. Does that guy that wrote this crap actually get paid? If so, where do I go to apply for a job with that outfit?

  • Oh my. I was joking last night when I said the Bears might give this guy a call. When will I learn?


  • In reply to BigDaddy:

    Hehe, yep. I posted a different link in response to your post... ;)

    I'm not sure how I feel about it... but might not be terrible given Wootten's injury. But dang, how many reclamation projects can you have going at once?

  • new thread

  • Per WGN, Mr. Haney has been moved to #3 on this week's QB depth chart.

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