Yeah, right now you're all thinking: "Geez, another one? And so soon?" I just want to get the taste of this last one out of my mouth. It's kinda like bad coffee brewed with way too many coffee grounds - just nasty. But, we get the absolutely horrendous, one-man Steven Jackson show, 1-10 St. Louis Rams, which should be more like a good beer. Yes, they're almost as bad as we feel we are. First business first, accountability, then preview.
First, cause I don't want to sound like I know everything, hell knows I sure don't, I'll keep a tally of how my keys and X-Factors were more or less true or false, and better yet, you guys can be the judges. Which, for the Vikings game... AP, All Vikes Receivers, Jared Allen, and the deep ball.
Adrian Peterson: 25 Carries, 85 yards, 1 TD
Vikings Receivers: Harvin, Rice, Berrian: 18 Receptions (6 per), 264 yards, 1 TD (Harvin).
Jared Allen: 2 Sacks, 1 Pass Deflection
Da Bomb: ... Was a dud. Longest completion of the day was Knox's 24-yarder for a TD.
And for the X-Factors...
Vikings: I named Visanthe Shiancoe for this one, and I feel like this one was right. The receivers were the stars of the show but Shiancoe was no slouch himself - 9 targets, 5 receptions for 51 yards and a TD.
Bears: So I cheated and named two - Knox and Forte. Knox only got one completion on two targets, but it was a 24 yard fade for a TD. We all knew Forte wasn't gonna RUN well (only 8 carries for 27 yards) so I was banking on screens for this - 4 receptions on 4 targets for 34 yards with a long of 16.
Prediction: My prediction last week somehow found its way into the comments section, a Vikings win. More of a blowout than I thought it'd be. 1-0 for getting the Vikings win right.
So... "Oh no! We suck again!"
Okay, enough is enough, sheesh, I'm gonna puke if I look at this anymore. Onward to better looking, more appetizing things. Like the Rams. My keys are as follows.
1) Stop RB Steven Jackson
Steven Jackson is the team's primary and only consistent (and some might say only, period) weapon. Behind this line and with the help he has, how he gets 100 total YFS, consistently is a mystery to me (against Seattle, 24 carries for 89 yards and a TD, 5 catches for 27 yards - even better, he was a game-time decision yesterday with a back). Know where he is at all times - on any given play, odds are, it's his number. The Rams will go to him often on our own 24th-ranked rush defense - the Bears need to make them pay for this.
2) Sack QB Kyle Boller
Last week, Boller went 28/42 for 282 yards with a TD and two INTs... and got hit 12 times, sacked four times, and had nine passes deflected. Yes, that's Boller, not Cutler. He can be gotten to, but the D-Line needs to show up, much less play. For a "genious" like Marinelli, the Rams shouldn't be too tough to solve... right?
3) Rediscover the Rush
The Bears rush on the bad teams. The Rams are a bad team. Therefore, the Bears can rush on the Rams. Case, SEA RB Justin Forsett got 22 carries against STL. What'd he do with them? 130 yards with 2 TDs.
4) The Deep Ball
Jay should have time to throw. Let me repeat this. Jay should have time to throw. The Rams have 18 sacks on the year and only 8 INTs. Last week they had one sack and two QB hits for the game (Qualifier: Matt Hasselback had a bad game - 14/25, 102 yards). Jared Allen topped that all by his lonesome. But you're thinking "SJS, you idiot, of course they only had one sack, there were only 26 dropbacks," I will point out there were only 3 tackles for loss for the game. The Rams give pressure... well, like we do.
Rams X-Factor) WR Danny Amendola
You know, I so badly wanted to say TE Daniel Fells for this - thanks to No It All drilling it into my head over on the "Problem With Jay Cutler Pt 2" FanPost by axthelm (a good read, by the way) that the Bears are 30th in Red Zone defense - a stat that I have issues with but I digress - and Fells has 3 TDs on the year in said Red Zone. But, he doesn't get the ball in his hands enough otherwise. Therefore, Amendola gets the call. Last week, he had as many targets as Donnie Avery making three more catches (7 for Amendola vs 4 for Avery). Avery's the big play threat but Amendola has had two good weeks in a row and as the WR3 currently (and the return man), he's looking for a little respect. Prediction: 10 Targets, 7 completions, 61 yards, 1 TD.
Bears X-Factor) RB Matt Forte
...I hate naming players in back-to-back weeks, but I give. Matt, please, from a Bears fan to a Bears player, please run over this 28th ranked rush defense like we know you can. Please, I beg of you. Please don't let Denver and Tampa have better picks in the draft than they deserve. Prediction: 17 rushes, 83 yards, 1 TD.
Prediction) BEARS 27 - 24 RAMS
I know it shouldn't be that close but I can't see it being anything but. I can see S-Jax getting one, even two TDs with Amendola grabbing one, and if S-Jax doesn't get the second I can see Avery getting in on the scoring fun. But if the Bears are who we thought they were, and they can run on this team, Forte has his first big game since Cleveland and Cutler, with time to throw, can hit Knox and Hester for scores.
Questions? Comments on who's more pathetic: the Rams or the Raiders? "SJS you're a dumbass"? Below!