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The Most Depressing Upset Win Of All Time

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SarahSpain

Sports reporter, sarcastic smartass, music lover, funny gal.

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Watching the Bears beat Minnesota in overtime Monday night should have felt great.

The division rival Vikings were playing for a chance at the top seed in the NFC, while Chicago had nothing to play for. Led by longtime rival Brett Favre, the Vikings were supposed to roll right through the hapless Bears en route to a first-round bye. They didn't.

Jay Cutler looked like the QB the Bears traded for and the Bears' defense finally looked like a cohesive unit. Devin Aromashodu had the game of his life and made us all wonder why he wasn't on the field all year. It wasn't even Robbie Gould, the most consistent Bear week after week, who won the game for the Monsters of the Midway. No, after Gould missed a 45-yarder for the win, Hunter Hillenmeyer pulled a Peanut, punching out the football at the end of an Adrian Peterson run and Nick Roach dove on the loose ball to give Chicago a second chance. 

More unbelievable than a Robbie Gould miss was what came next. The Bears won on a big-balled play call by the usually ho-hum, uninspired Ron Turner. Cutler to Aromashodu for a 39-yard game-winning TD on the FIRST play of the Bears' third overtime drive. Ballsy.

The win should have made me feel good. And I guess it did, for a moment. It was nice to see the team play with some pride. It felt good to see the Bears' defense make big plays and it was sure comforting to know that "good" Cutler is still in there somewhere.  

But after the initial glow of the win wore off--just minutes after the final TD, in fact--the game became utterly and completely depressing.  Where have these Bears been all year? How good would that win have felt had the Bears been playing for something--anything?  

The win didn't answer any questions for Bears fans, in fact it just brought up more of them.  
 
Why do Turner and co. only take risks when the season is toast? When Cutler came to Chicago, word was that his accuracy and strength would result in big plays to speedsters like Devin Hester. Cutler was going to pull off the kind of ball that Kyle Orton couldn't throw with enough precision and Hester's speed would finally be a game-changer. And yet, deep balls have been few and far between this year. Even when both Johnny Knox and Hester were on the field at the same time, Turner rarely called a fly route.

Why did Aromashodu have 12 receptions all YEAR before Monday night's game? Beginning early this season Cutler was calling for more playing time for DA. With one game left in an already lost season, the receiver finally gets his looks and man, does he make them count. Seven catches for 150 yards and the game-winning touchdown. It's impossible not to think about what might have been had Aromashodu been out there earlier and more often.

How did this Bears team, injured and apathetic, beat a Vikings team that handed them a 36-10 beatdown just four weeks ago? The Bears started the game Monday without Adewale Ogunleye, Devin Hester, Kevin Payne and Al Afalava and both Charles Tillman and Johnny Knox left early with injuries. A bad start by the Vikings certainly helped the Bears, but when Minnesota started to play like a playoff-bound team, the Bears didn't back down. Where was that fight on Nov. 29, when Chicago amassed just 2 TOTAL YARDS in the second half against Minny?

And the most important question of all...

Will the McCaskey family use this meaningless win as an excuse to keep the Bears' current coaching staff? Dear God, I hope not. Even if the Bears beat the Lions next week, they'll finish the year 7-9. When all is said and done, 7-9 is no better than 6-10. Neither record will get your team into the playoffs. Neither record is acceptable. When Bears players and fans look back on the 2009 season, they won't remember a Week 16 win over the Vikings, they'll remember countless losses to other teams. They won't remember Cutler's four touchdown, one interception performance Monday night, they'll remember the 25 picks he threw before Monday.

So enjoy Monday's win all you want, Bears fans, but the real winners Monday night were still the Vikings. They're headed to a postseason that, yet again, doesn't include the Bears. 

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16 Comments

Carrie Williams said:

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Well said, Sarah!

Lauren Strec said:

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Agree completely. My most memorable moment of the season? In the audience of Da Bears @ Cincy, with my mouth hanging open as the Bengals fight song played over and OVER.

Gunzaan said:

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Maybe they decided to play hard so that Denver wouldn't get as high of a draft pick? :)

Tarzan Joe said:

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I think the play calling opened up because the O-Line was finally providing protection. The final touchdown was a run call where Jay had the option to switch to the pass he threw. Jay called it a "Run-Pass Option." I don't think Jay would have switched to a pass if he had been getting killed all night.

Couldn't agree more about Aromashadu. Oh, and there was a Tommie Harris sighting!

jennyb said:

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The Bears never lived up to their potential with injuries, coaching problems, internal problems etc. But last night validated the season.
It was a bright spot amongst all the gloom, reminding everyone what we have. We have the 2nd coming of Favre and we need coaches and call players to suit his style of play. THE LOVIE FAIR is OVER. Sorry I do love Lovie, but we need to move on and take Turner with you. Cutler is our future. Aromashadu and Johnny Knox are our future. Put Hester back on returns so we start on the 40 or 50 or further. What a shame this coaching staff took away his role of being a superstar returner to be a less than mediocre receiver. Shame on you, we had it going on with Hester doing returns. I wonder how many more returns for touchdowns he could have had. Well I know we have heard it before...just wait till next year!!!!
oh BTW, GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!!

Aisle424 said:

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This did nothing to make me believe next year will be any better with this same group leading the way. Poor fundamental teams that finally got inspired 15 games into a lost season (even the earlier victories were uninspired and downright lucky) don't improve by maintaining the status quo.

Nevertheless, I'll be shocked if Lovie and/or Angelo are gone. It will be nearly as shocking as Aaron Miles reaching base safely.

That is truly the depressing part.

Mr Windycityxxx said:

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I loved how after the game some of the bears were jumping around like a bunch of monkeys in the back of a banana truck. Someone should have told them they are still 6-9 and NOT going to the playoffs.... I have season tickets and only went to a few games this year because I refuse to waste a sunday afternoon watching this team play.Cutler is an Average NFL quarterback with a crappy attitude that got him run out of Denver.Lovie AND Angelo need to go.Ron Rivera's defense was the only reason they made it to the Super Bowl in 2006 and they let him walk.

CJ said:

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Like I said in earlier blogs, I want Ange-hoe gone. That way the reports of Cower comming to town will pan out. Then ONLY THEN will we see a game like last nights on a more consistant basis. It's either us or Tampon-Bay for him. Shana-pan will be going to the Fed-up Skins. So who's next out there? A Unproven assistant coach?!? I hop not. I will remain optimistic. ~~~Late

IHF said:

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"Will the McCaskey family use this meaningless win as an excuse to keep the Bears' current coaching staff? Dear God, I hope not."

You and I were thinking the exact same thing at the exact same moment. It proved to me that even though we have been plagued by injuries this season that we have never been as bad as we appear. That to me proves that our pathetic play is due solely to our coaching staff and their uninspired play calling. Last night also proved that Cutler does have the stuff if given opportunity and time in the pocket as he had last night.

IrishSweetness said:

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It did feel great. And I'm tired of whiny 'fans' who pray for their team to lose. That's being the opposite of a fan by the way. The decision as to whether he stays or goes has already been made in Ginnie's head. What happens in the last few games of the season affects only the players, not the coaches' future. That's already known to Angelo et al. We went toe to toe with the best last night in a shootout, and we won. If you can't enjoy that for what it is then ask yourself why is America the only country on the planet where fans would wish for the team they love ... to lose. And don't say that losing last night would be better for the team in the long run (getting Lovie fired) because that's not true. It would cost at least $35 million to fire Lovie and replace him. Ginne likes the guy, and they've got religion in common .. and two years left on his contract, so the guy isn't going anywhere. But you want the Bears to lose ? Fans SUPPORT their teams. Supporters. Fans. Get it ?

IHF said:

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Irish Sweetness, since the Super Bowl the Bears are 22-25 under Coach Lovie. You confuse being a fan and being critical of your team's future based upon the season as a whole.

"We went toe to toe with the best last night in a shootout." Is your second absurd remark. If you were to take off your blinders and follow football as a whole you would know that the Vikes have now lost 3 of their last 4 games. I would not define that as "the best". Being loyal to your team is what I deem to be a fan. Being blindly loyal to a coaching/ ownership/ administrative staff that has proven more in failure than success is ignorant.

Definition of insanity- Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

IrishSweetness said:

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I've been hearing about how great Brett Favre and Adrian Petersen are all season. Elite team, NFL force, blah blah blah, now they just ripped up the NYG so I don't want to hear that we didn't someone good. We did. The Bears record since Lovie's been here has been very largely due to the defense and judging by the last two years (because we don't live in the past do we ?) we have sucked badly on so many levels. Our number one receiver emerges two weeks before the end of the regular season and isn't even as good (or as tall) as Rideau, who got cut before the season to keep Iglesias on the roster(to keep Angelo's ego intact). Enough. Although he's not going anywhere this season so they're all moot points.....

And why is it that every second poster on Bears message boards comes up with "Definition of insanity- Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results." over and over ? Why ? It's Einstein's definition by the way, and not a definition therefore.


is

IHF said:

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Maybe to make my point I will ask a question from a different angle.

"Would you be happy to see the players/ coaches/ management team remain intact as it sits at the end of this season for next season?"

robertc9789 said:

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It was good to see them do well finally but sad that it came much to late for this season. Next year? I don't think they will improve much with the current coaching. But I don't think the ownership has the guts or will to make a change. It's been like that forever with the Bears it seems...

John said:

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News flash -- Turner DID NOT call the winning play. Cutler said after the game that he audibled out of a running play. BIG surprise....

IHF said:

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"The Bears have fired offensive coordinator Ron Turner, as well as offensive line coach Harry Hiestand, quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton and tight ends coach Rob Boras, according to a league source."

Hopefully they will continue up the ladder.

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