Bears 24, Bengals 21

In Bears by myles9 Comments

Well, the game didn't really pan out how I expected it to (though the margin of victory was identical).

Bears Run Versus Bengals Run Defense

I said that this was a defense that could be run on, but I was wrong. Forte carried the ball 19 times for just 50 yards; as a team, the Bears were 28 for 81 (18 of which came on a nifty Cutler scoot on a 2nd and 20). Forte wasn't getting any sort of penetration from the OL, and he wasn't getting the edge all game until the very end on a nice 4th and 1 conversion. 

Bengals Run Versus Bears Run Defense

The Law Firm was disbarred in this game, carrying the ball 14 games for just 25 yeards. He looked really bad; Giovani Bernard only got 4 carries but had almost as many yards (22). He is going to be the starter very soon, and looked pretty good in his limited time. There was a nice WR end-around to M. Jones that gained 14 yards as well, and it was frustrating to watch when it happened.

Bears Pass Versus Bengals Pass Defense

Cutler was really excellent in this game. He was unsacked (a testament to the offensive line AND to Cutler getting rid of the ball, and the scheme that was built around reducing Cutler's sacks), and completed a good number of passes (21/33, 63.4%). He had his customary frustrating interception, but we're just going to have to deal with that. He led the Bears down the field essentially at will from the middle of the 3rd onward, and converted on a short field that the defense gave the offense early on in the game. 

Brandon Marshall had a great game, with 10 targets for 8 catches and 104 yards. Jeffery wasn't as successful, with 5 grabs for 42 yards on 8 targets. Forte had 4 catches for 41 yards as well. Martellus Bennett dropped an easy one for his first play as a Bear, but made up for it with a nice grab in the back of the end zone for a TD (I'm not sure it was actually a TD, but it was not indisputable and so was not reversed). All in all, a great game for the WR corps and Jay.

Bengals Pass Versus Bears Pass Defense

First, the bad. A.J. Green beat Peanut like a drum all game. When a physical, elite WR matches up against Tillman, there just isn't that much he can do. If Green runs a crisp, perfect route, it doesn't matter who's defending him. He lit up Chicago for 162 yards on 9 targets (13 targets). Tyler Eifert was similarly dominant (and the Bears ALWAYS struggle against physical tight ends). 

Now, the good. Even though the Bears only had one sack (Shea McClellin!), they put enough pressure on Dalton to rush his throws. Remember what I said about Peanut Tillman? When Green DOESN'T run a perfect route, Tillman is a threat to intercept the ball. He did twice; once on a no-doubter that Dalton would like to have back, and another off a carom through Green's hands. A.J. Green was far from perfect in this one; Jennings got two Peanut Punches in, knocking the ball out of his hands once (though it was kicked out of bounds by Jennings accidentally) and removing the ball from Sanu's hands as well (he recovered his own forced fumble). Tillman is still an elite corner, so don't let the huge game from Green fool you. He still had 2 picks, one of which led directly to 7 points. 

Special Teams

Robbie Gould kicked the longest field goal in Bears history, draining a 58-yarder at the end of the half. I love me some Robbie Gould. Hester had a pretty good kick return but was bottled up on punts, only one of which he had positive yardage on. 

Prediction: Bears 17, Bengals 14
Actual: Bears 24, Bengals 21

Next Up

The Bears stay home to play a pretty bad Minnesota team. The Bengals host a pretty bad Pittsburgh team on Monday night.


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  1. Aisle424

    I haven’t seen anybody break down the Cutler INT, but I have to imagine he was throwing to a space and whoever was supposed to be there wasn’t there. It was just SO BAD it had to be something like that.

    The hilarious thing was the announcers had just made a big deal about how Jay was smiling on the sidelines and cheering his teammates on (UNLIKE PREVIOUS SEASONS WHEN HE WAS A POUTY, CHEMISTRY KILLING DOUCHEBAG) and he throws the one of the worst interceptions I’ve ever seen.

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  2. Omar Little

    Aisle424 wrote:

    If he is grasping the offense and they think he can grow in it, they’ll re-sign him. If not, they’ll find someone. What gave me the most hope was that the back-up QBs looked competent in Trestman’s system during the pre-season. Usually there is a gigantic drop-off even though they are facing inferior defenses. That guy that started the last pre-season game looked pretty good and they didn’t hesitate in cutting him.

    That’s the thing about your new offense. QB is MUCH more replaceable. I think Cutler’s an average QB already, and his strengths are relatively wasted in the WCO. It would be much more cost effective to let him go and look to the draft.

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  3. WaLi

    @ Aisle424:
    On that INT it looked like it was to Bush, who hardly saw any game time it seemed. The drive before we were on the goal line and it would have been a perfect time to bring Bush in (but we scored anyways, so whatever). Then we do bring Bush in, and it looks like he missed his route. It was hard to tell though if Bush was the intended target because there was another receiver (Bennett?) running a cross behind him, but the ball was like 5 yards short of him.

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  4. Aisle424

    Omar Little wrote:

    QB is MUCH more replaceable.

    Yep. I like it. It can make stars out of above average QBs and make even average ones look better than they are.

    You’d think some football team would have figured that out by now and just kept building up new fresh faces at QB, and trading them for shitloads of picks while turning it over to their back-up.

    Maybe Aaron Rodgers is only an above average QB, but he’s in a good system that made Matt Flynn look good and makes him look like the second coming. Why not keep Matt Flynn, not lose much on the offensive side and trade Aaron Rodgers in a Herschel Walker type deal to some team desperate TO MAKE A BOLD STATEMENT TO THEIR FANS. You know, like the Bears were when they traded for Cutler.

    It would fly in the face of NFL convention, but if you’re right and it is the system, you’d kill teams in trade repeatedly before they figured it out and started mimicking your strategy.

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  5. Aisle424

    @ Berselius:

    Maybe he is. I don’t know. I suspect he’s a good QB, but how good is hard to know since he’s really only run the one system his whole career.

    That’s the thing with QBs, most of the good ones never move to a different franchise so you don’t know what they can do in a different system with different pieces.

    Montana is probably the biggest name to move and he was getting pretty old. Now Peyton is showing he can succeed with a different team as well. Favre never had as much success outside Green Bay and his weaknesses seems exaggerated after leaving, but he was old.

    I’m not an NFL expert, but there are a ton of moving parts in a good offense and the QB gets more than the proper share of attention whether good or bad.

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