I'm not going to do a grades post today because what's the point? The team lost, Jay Cutler committed two turnovers and Jordan Mills struggled again. The play calling was erratic and Jeremiah Ratliff was one of the lone bright spots of the game. Overall, it was a failing grade. But special teams brought two kicks out past the twenty, so maybe they get a passing grade for one of the few times this year.
On one hand, maybe you look at this and say 'at least the players care. At least they're upset, they should be, they aren't playing up to their potential.' On the other hand, they shouldn't be handling it this way. There should not be locker room meltdowns and shouting matches.
Football is a passionate sport. There are a lot of big egos in the Bears locker room. The team has big personalities in Brandon Marshall, Jay Cutler, Martellus Bennett and Lance Briggs, among others.
Just when they should be working together, they are possibly falling apart.
Frankly, the question I keep coming back to is, is Marc Trestman the right coach?
He is a good offensive coordinator and decent play caller but too many times this year the Bears have shown up unprepared and under performed.
David Haugh addressed this in his column today and he makes a good point.
Why weren't the Bears as ready as their opponent — again? You can blame the offense committing three turnovers and the defense struggling to stop the dastardly zone read if you want to continue kidding yourself. But that misses the point. Dolphins coach Joe Philbin, one of the NFL's least secure coaches, simply prepared his team mentally better than Trestman. He outcoached his counterpart.
The play calling was suspect too. The first series of the game the Bears faced 3rd and 1 on their own 47 yard line, the Bears came out in a shotgun formation and threw a deep ball to Alshon Jeffery for an incompletion.
Matt Forte, the second-leading rusher in franchise history and the cog through which the offense is supposed to run, had two first half carries. And it wasn't just because they were using the short passing game in place of the run game. They did do that, specifically on their second and fourth possessions but then they pushed the ball down the field. The Dolphins came in with the fifth best pass defense in the league and tenth best rush defense. How do you not even challenge the defense with the rushing attack? The offensive line returned all five starters for the first time since week one and their best strength is in run blocking.
I'm not advocating that the Bears fire Trestman. They will be stuck with him for at least one more year and they are stuck with Cutler for two more, although spotrac says he only counts for $3 million in dead money in 2016. But I can't help but wonder if he really is a great coach. His teams routinely under achieve and after 23 games he is 11-12, his play calling goes from smart to inept, the offense has taken two steps back after taking one big one forward last season and the defense still can't defend the read option to save their lives.
Now the locker room tension. Trestman said after the game that it "starts with me." He's been saying that a lot after losses but nothing seems to be getting better. Maybe the Bears need to start over. Each week that goes by it looks like a mistake that the Bears could have hired Bruce Arians over Trestman.
The Bears are surely at the make or break point of the season, but it's certainly looking more like a breaking point right now.