The Bears (7-4) five-game winning streak came to an end on Sunday as they were defeated by the Oakland Raiders (7-4) 25-20 and failed to move into sole possession of second place in the NFC North.
Caleb Hanie threw for 2 touchdowns and three interceptions in his first career start in place of the injured Jay Cutler. His inexperience evident with each interception and the intentional grounding he was called for as time expired and the Bears comeback effort wasted.
With 4 of their next 5 games being against opponents that are beatable, the Bears will have to get started on a new winning streak if they expect to reach the postseason.
This column came before Sunday's game but Mark Potash penned that the Bears won't miss having Jay Cutler on the field as many expect. Neil Hayes writes that the Raiders beat the Bears at their own game. Sean Jensen wrote how Sunday's game showcased Hanie's inexperience.
While most of the headlines centered on Hanie's struggles, he did receive some encouragement from his teammates as written by Dan Pompei. Brad Biggs looked ahead to next week's game against Kansas City and focused on the positives of Hanie's performance in his two columns. David Haugh focused his attention on the play-calling of Mike Martz and contributed to some of Hanie's failures.
Our friends over at DA BEARS BLOG posted their thoughts on Caleb Hanie's performance and Sunday's loss.
Brian Urlacher blamed the defense on the Bears' loss, protecting his quarterback wrote Jeff Dickerson. Melissa Isaacson wrote that Hanie's rough debut shouldn't stop him from starting next week's game against the Chiefs.
David Schuster took the same stance as Sun-Times' Haugh in that the play-calling of Martz contributed to the Bears loss.
Filed under: Sports journalism