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Bears Implode, Lose to Panthers 20-17

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A lot of us were looking forward to this game, and why not? We went into Indy’s house and thoroughly thumped the Colts, and chances looked good that we would do the same to Carolina. But, don’t take nothing away from the Panthers. They were beating themselves in the first half, then rallied and stymied our offense. The only person I will not give credit to is Delhomme, mostly because I got sick of his constant whining. He took out his anger at his teammates on the refs, which looked extremely classless. Jonathon Stewart did good things, and their defense played well the second half.

Team Stat Comparison

 

Bears

Panthers

1st Downs

12

12

3rd down efficiency

6-15

2-13

4th down efficiency

0-1

0-0

Total Yards

256

216

Passing

141

102

Comp-Att

19-32

12-21

Yards per pass

4.4

4.9

Rushing

115

114

Rushing Attempts

29

31

Yards per rush

4.0

3.7

Penalties

12-86

10-65

Turnovers

2

1

Fumbles lost

2

0

Interceptions thrown

0

1

Possession

28:15

31:45

 

 

OFFENSE

 

QB: Kyle Orton did not throw an interception (although there were some near misses) or fumble the football away. That was about the only good that he did.

 

As pointed out by many of you, Orton’s weaknesses (specifically his horrendous accuracy on passes longer than 15 yards) were glaring. Besides his pass to Brandon Lloyd, which was underthrown, Orton was absolutely horrible on intermediate or long throws. Marty Booker was wide open and Orton missed him, costing us a touchdown or a huge chunk of yards, however you want to look at it. He wound up with a 19/32 completion-to-attempt ratio for

Grade: D

 

RB: Matt Forte ended up with 92 yards on 23 carries and a long of 18, which ends up to be a 4.0 YPC. We went up against a better DL, and it showed. Forte had to work harder for his yards, and there weren’t a lot of open holes for him.

Grade: B

 

WR: We had eight receivers tally catches for a total of 149 yards. The receivers themselves are not to blame for Orton’s lack of accuracy. However, Olsen’s two inexcusable fumbles and a couple dropped balls ARE their fault.

Grade: C-

 

DEFENSE

 

First, the stats. The Bears tallied three sacks and Peanut’s juggling interception.

 

Second, the analysis. The defense held up for the most part. Jonathon Stewart gained 77 yards with two touchdowns, and no receiver really burned us (Muhammad had 59 yards as the leader). We were able to put pressure on Jake Delhomme on a regular basis. At the same time, we gave up some pretty big plays (Muhammad’s catch against Vasher and his would-have-been TD that got called back for a holding call).

 

The reason why I’m giving them a B+ is because for the most part, the defense was great. They were able to put pressure on, sack, and forced a turnover. It could have been a lot worse.

Grade: B+

 

ST

 

For some reason, anti-Brad Maynard sentiments were flying around after the game today. Personally, I find it unfounded. Maynard punted 7 times with an average of 40.1. Not great, but not horrible, and certainly not the reason we lost today. I know people want to find an answer about this loss come hell or high water, but Maynard was not the reason. Blame it on Greg Olsen or Kyle Orton, but not our damn punter.

 

Danieal Manning was close to breaking one except for a great tackle on the part of Carolina’s ST. There also was a lot of talk about who should be returning since we don’t know the status of God. We could either let Vasher do it, who has a history of being a good returner, but he’s also our starting DB. If he gets injured, we’d be out more than a returner; it would be a defensive starter. On the other hand, we could use Danieal Manning, who doesn’t start. Returning could be his gig, which would hopefully lift his spirits about losing his defensive role.

 

Robbie Gould was perfect on his field goals today. For that and the listed reasons, I give this group a B.