On the way to work this morning I was still trying to decide how I was going to open this post. What was going to be the big news? Would it be something about the Wind Bowl? Maybe some up date on Cedric Benson. Or I could go with something about the Bears being 6-3. Instead, my answer came from a most unexpected source, Mike Greenberg. Greenberg of ESPN's morning show Mike and Mike in the Morning were joined by ex-Bears coach Mike Dikta and were discussing this past weekend's football action and when they were on the topic of the Bears, Greenberg said and I am paraphrasing here:
If Bill Belichick of the Patriots had put a man under the field goal to try to run it back it would be leading SportsCenter and everybody would be talking about how much of a genius he is. Lovie Smith does it and it is an after thought.
I never knew Greenberg had it in him to man up and shoot a shot at the ESPN bias, but I appreciate it.
On to bigger and much messier things, that being the game. The only highlight I have had access to feature a ferocious wind, but per some comments left on the game thread I am lead to believe that it was not as big of a deal as it was made out. It was obvious the coach's thought it was a big deal as most of the offense was run from the ground. 49ers QB Pickett only threw 13 times connecting on 1 for 28 yards. Bears QB Orton threw 13 times as well completing 8 for 67 yards, but once again that was all that was needed as the Bears ran over the 49ers D as they should have. Benson got off to a good start rushing 12 times for a 4.2 average and 50 yards. He was carted off the field with a knee injury. In stepped Adrian Peterson, who showed the kind of ability most of us thought he had if given the chance and rushed for 120 yards on 24 carries for a 5.0 average.
With 133 yards on the ground from the 49ers spread between three backs, none rushing for more than 60 yards, and the 28 yards from Pickett's one pass the Bears D held the Niners to 161 total yard. They still scored three field goals and since none of the 49ers scores seemed to be because of field position from their punt and kickoff returns I can only guess the Bears 3 fumbles were close to the wrong end zone.
Of course, the big play was Nathan Vashar's 108 yard return of a missed field goal, which is the longest return of any kind in NFL history. One thing that always bothered me about the final seconds before half time is how many teams are afraid to take a shot at the end zone. So many just kneel down. The choice was obviously left to Vashar and after considering taking the knee, he decided to just go for it.
OK, now it is your turn. Can any body who had the ability to actually see the game give me your take?