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The Bears Den: September 20, 2013 - Week 3 news and notes

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Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Bears offense still has plenty of plays in reserve - Larry Mayer: The Bears have only unveiled a small portion of Marc Trestman's playbook so far, and have plenty more plays being held in reserve. Michael C. Wright: Highly likely the Bears unveil new concepts this week.

Offensive productivity tied directly to Forte’s double duty - Steve Silverman: RBs who catch the ball consistently help open things up for the receivers.

Expectations high for Trestman-led Bears, but let’s be patient - Hub Arkush: It’s early folks. There is still so much to learn about this team, but it is safe to say already we are witnessing a new dawn on offense.

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Steelers pose fresh challenge for Trestman, Cutler - Bob LeGere: The difficulty factor for the 2-0 Bears is expected to increase Sunday when they travel to Pittsburgh for a nationally televised game against a Steelers team considered more dangerous than its 0-2 record would indicate.

Don't count out Steelers - Jon Greenberg: The Bears' struggling pass rush and third-down defense must improve against Ben Roethlisberger.

Bears determined to put pressure on Roethlisberger - Larry Mayer: After recording only one sack in each of their first two games this season, the Bears are determined to generate a better pass rush in Pittsburgh. Mark Potash: Melton returning to form.

Defensively, it's all on the line for Bears - Chris Boden: If those guys up front start making an impact again, this promising start to the season should easily continue building momentum. [Video] Hub Arkush previews the game.

[Video] CSNChicago discussion - The panel look ahead to Sunday as the Bears gear up to face the Steelers. [KAPCON: 5]

Game preview - Dan McNeil: Don't underestimate Steelers, don't overestimate Bears; Ben Roethlisberger remains capable of making plays.

Matt Bowen: Scouting the Bears - How Ben Roethlisberger will try to exploit zone pressure of Bears blitz

Bears bracing for Dick LeBeau's 3-4 defense - Doug Padilla: The Steelers' defensive guru has the Bears acting like they are about to face a dreaded monster this week instead of the wounded animal Pittsburgh really is. Rich Campbell: One of the most feared units in the league.

Long, Mills prepare for unique challenge - Adam Hoge: Kyle Long saw the 3-4 defense every day at Oregon and that will be important Sunday as he stands next to a fellow rookie who doesn’t have as much experience against the scheme.

Bears go in-house for insight into 3-4 'thinking' - Moon Mullin: To really get inside the 3-4 means understanding how 3-4 coaches think. The Bears needed look no further than a member of their own staff for that.

X&Os - Dan Durkin: The goal of a zone blitz is two-fold: to create conflict in a protection scheme, and disguise coverage in zones that would typically be left open. Adam L. Jahns: LeBeau built the zone blitz to beat the WCO. [Good thing we run the TCO - Den]

Joniak's Journal - Cavanaugh a calming influence on Cutler, and more thoughts on the Bears leading up to Sunday's game in Pittsburgh.

Marshall: I disrespected Ike Taylor in 2010 - Jeff Dickerson: The two squared off during in the 2010 regular season, but Marshall promises not to overlook the 11-year veteran DB on Sunday night.

Cutler ready for team's toughest challenge - Michael C. Wright: Regardless of their respective records, Cutler considers Pittsburgh to be Chicago’s most significant test to date.

Bears and Steelers counting on QB-coach connections - Brad Biggs: For one of the same reasons the Bears say their offense is trending upward, the Steelers have a chance to dig out of an 0-2 hole.

Al Michaels intrigued by Bears - Dan Wiederer: NBC’s Al Michaels will be on the call for the Bears-Steelers clash on Sunday night, and he likes what he has seen from Trestman's team.

Game picks - The CBS Chicago crew nearly unanimously pick the Bears to win.


Bears mailbag - Brad Biggs' reader Q&A on Weems' 'free play,' the MLB situation, Earl Bennett and Brian Urlacher. CloudyFuture and ThorCo made the cut!

Acting like a pro has been a plus for Cutler - David Haugh: If you believe Cutler's poor demeanor in the past contributed to losing composure and bad decision-making, you cannot ignore the potential link between a happy QB and a productive one.

[Video] CSNChicago discussion - Is Jay Cutler much different this year? [KAPCON: 5]

Jay Cutler credits comfort level for improved offense - Brad Biggs: With two fourth-quarter comebacks putting the team at 2-0 heading into Sunday night’s game at Pittsburgh, the Bears are feeling good about their offense.

Four Downs - Jeff Dickerson & Jon Greenberg discuss whether Hester will be a Bear beyond '13, the rookie O-linemen, the D-line, and how tough the Steelers will be.

SI's Pass Rush Pressure Points - Bears improved in week 2, but overall remain bottom of the pass rush table in's weighted Pass Rush Pressure Points metric.

Team notes - Rich Campbell: Melton facing more double teams after first Pro Bowl; rookie O-linemen not concerned about first road game; more team news.

Team notes - Bob LeGere: Acting not Cutler's calling card; Trestman not getting carried away by 2-0 start; homecoming for Marshall; injury news.

Ex-Bear news - Fred Mitchell: Former Bears All-Pro CB Allan Ellis died unexpectedly on Wednesday at the age of 62.

Polish sausage

Know thy enemy: Lions - Michael Rothstein: With help from LeCharles Bentley, 'Sports car' Larry Warford thrives in starting Guard role.

Know thy enemy: Vikings - Ben Goessling: It's probably silly to assume Peterson will be able to match last season in most respects, but it is telling that the reigning NFL MVP sees things he needs to correct. Revisiting Frazier's role in play-calling.

Know thy enemy: Vikings - Ben Goessling and Matt Williamson discuss the week 3 matchup between a pair of teams desperate for their first victory as Minnesota host Cleveland.

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David Taylor threatened to photoshop Ndamukong Suh's head onto my leprechaun avatar* if I didn't use his suggestion for Sam & Ashley's nuptials music week. (*May not actually have happened.)