Quick Game Comments: Bears at Cardinals
- The Bears were once again showing cover two but sneaking that eighth guy up into the box and transitionsing to cover one.
- They stacked the line and playing the run and challenging rookie Ryan Lindley to beat them.
- The Bears Charles Tillman and Tim Jennings had a heck of a time covering covering Larry Fitzgerald.
- Lindley seems to lean on Fitzgerald almost as much as Cutler leans on Marshall. But it seems like a lot of short passes.
- It was a tough game for rookie right tackle Nate Potter. He drew Julius Peppers on a lot of rushes. He ended up getting a lot of help.
- The Bears may have been looking to tip balls against Lindley. Their hands were up a lot and it looked like it might have been a point of emphasis during the week.
- There wasn’t much blitzing but the Bears ran a lot of stunts to take advantage of the Cardinals offensive line. It seemed to work. They got a lot of pressure on Arizona quarterbacks.
- It looked to me like the Bears plan was to force the Cardinals to play the run, then use that to effectvely pass the ball.
- They certainly di drun the ball well. Forte broke some fairly damaging runs against a defense that plays it poorly.
- Forte had a good day. I’m starting to think he may have lost just a little explsiveness but his vision was pretty good.
- Armando Allen looked good in relief of the injured Forte. He’s more of a quick, cut back runner that provided a nice change of pace.
- Brandon Marshall does out interfere with these defensive backs. He was driving Peterson insane with it. He’s extremely good at hiding it.
- This was definitely not one of Cutler’s better games. He really wasn’t accurate today. The Bears are going to need better next week with the season on the line.
- It was nice to see Cutler involving Earl Bennett and Alshon Jeffery so nicely in the two minute drill at the end of the first half. Of course the touchdown pass went to Marshall but still, it was nice to see them spread it around. He also started the second half with a pass to Kellen Davis.
- I heard a lot of calls during the week from people like Matt Bowen at the Chicago Tribune for the Bears to work the middle of the field more. The Bears did more of it this game with guys like Davis and Bennett and it and was effective.
- Solid effort by the Bears offensive line this game.
- The NFL assigned Terry McAulay and his crew to the game. I thought both teams did a good job of limiting them but it was evident that the Cardinals offensive line wa having trouble. They were responsible for most of the ones there was. Generally speaking there was a lot more begging for calls than actual calls.
- The Bears made punt returns a circus as they muffed one punt and nearly muffed a second. Hester did have a nice kickoff return to start the second half. and Eric Weems made a nice play early, pushin Greg Toler into PAtrick Peterson on a punt. The fake field goal by the Cardinals in the first half was pure stupid.
- The Beanie Wells fumble wchi was recovered by Zack Bowman for a touchdown was obviously huge, as was the Charles Tillman interception on a terrible pass by Lindley. DJ Moore muffed the punt referenced above for a turnover as part of the juggling act on punt returns.
- It looks to me like Arizona head coach Ken Whisenhunt has had enough. He pulled Beanie Wells from this game after that early fumble and Lindley got pulled after an awful pick six. He’s starting to send a message to that team.
- The Bears deserve plenty of credit for taking care of business and winning this game. But I’ve got to say that the story of the game was how awful Arizona is. They’re quarterback is terrible, their offense other than Larry Fitzgerald inept. The Bears were able to use Forte and Allen to run the ball forcing the Cardinals to adjust and commit to stopping it. That left a good pass defense exposed as Patrick Peterson was left on an island with Brandon Marshall.
These are the games the Bears have been winning all year. The real test comes next week in that dome in Detroit. It’s going to take a lot of mental toughness and intestinal fortitude to win in that environment, possibly with the playoffs on the line. I’ll be impressed if they do. I won’t be surprised in the least if they don’t.
There weren’t an inordinate number of drops on either side but they’re all irritating. Evan Rodriguez dropped a ball deep in Bear territory that left them in third and long. Marshall dropped the next pass and it almost led to an interception.