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The Weekend Bears Den: November 22, 2014 - Chicago Bears vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers news & previews

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Larry Mayer's Chalk Talk - Larry discusses whether David Bass will get more reps, Brock Vereen playing more on defense, and the last time the Bears faced one of their former head coaches.

Lovie Smith, the Bears, what was and what might have been - Dan Wiederer: After nearly reaching the NFL summit, why did Lovie Smith's Bears not sustain their success better?

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Previewing Chicago Bears vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Game breakdown - The Tribune's look at team matchups, scouting report on Josh McCown, game picks, and more thoughts going into Sunday's game.

Game preview - Jeff Mezydlo: Both Lovie Smith's Buccaneers and the Bears are looking to build on much-needed victories Sunday when the coach returns to Soldier Field.

Players to watch versus Buccaneers - Larry Mayer and Mini-Larry discuss the Bears players they'll be watching on both sides of the ball in Sunday's home game.

Game preview - Adam L. Jahns: In their own words, five Bears and five Buccaneers to watch during the "Lovie Bowl" at Soldier Field on Sunday.  Dan Durkin: Five matchups to focus on.

Game preview - Michael C. Wright, Pat Yasinskas: Lovie Smith returns to Chicago looking for a winning streak, with the Bears coming off a win of their own.

Game preview - Is-Hub Arkush: Bears and Bucs a lot alike; a few individual matchups will be the difference.

Game preview - Jeff Joniak's keys to the game.  More thoughts for Sunday.

Game preview - Jeff Dickerson with a look at how the teams match up: The Bears win the game if they control Tampa's two star players, Gerald McCoy and Mike Evans.

Game preview - Not-Hub Fishbain, Scott Reynolds talk Bears-Bucs.

Game preview - Mark Potash: It’s up to the Bears to match the Bucs’ emotional edge.

Game preview - Patrick Finley: Ten questions for Bears as they prep for Bucs.

[Video] ESPN - Jeff Dickerson, Michael C. Wright and Tom Waddle discuss the keys to the Bears' matchup against the Buccaneers, who present matchup problems at WR and on the D-line.

[Video] View from the Moon - Moon Mullin on what the Bears must do Sunday to earn a victory.

X&Os - Matt Bowen: Major Wright will face a lot of pressure from Jay Cutler on deep routes; can the Bears exploit Lovie Smith's underperforming defense?

Mariani looks to make most of chance - Larry Mayer: Marc Mariani will play in his first NFL regular-season game since 2011 when he replaces the injured Chris Williams as the Bears’ punt and kickoff returner on Sunday.

Bears hand return duties to Marc Mariani - Jeff Dickerson: Marc Trestman confirmed Friday that recently signed return specialist Marc Mariani will handle return duties this weekend.

Team notes - Adam L. Jahns: Marc Mariani is next man up at returner; O-line may remain the same as last week; injury updates.

Team notes - Rich Campbell: Jay Cutler in the spotlight for Sunday's game; loss would reignite fan unrest; injury updates.

Team notes - Bob LeGere: Mariani thrilled with opportunity despite minimal preparation time; same O-line could start in back-to-back games for first time since Week 4; injury updates.

Know thy enemy - Brad Biggs compiles a scouting report on the Bucs' oustanding linebacker Lavonte David.  Mike Evans making quick adjustment to NFL.

Know thy enemy - with a preview of the Buccaneers' starters.

[Video] - A roundup of players and coaches speaking throughout the week as the Bears prepare to take on the Buccaneers at Soldier Field Sunday.

Photos - takes a look back at the best quotes of the week leading into Sunday's game.

[Video] - Jim Miller: Marc Trestman, Lovie Smith both trying to rebuild program.

Game picks - National and local media outlets make their picks for Sunday's game between the Bears (4-6) and Buccaneers (2-8) at Soldier Field.  More from: ESPN Chicago ... Sun-Times ...

Updated Sunday 07:15 CT / 13:15 GMT.

Game preview - Dan Durkin: Using Matt Forte can force the Bucs out of their comfortable two-high safety shell, which will open up the play-action passing game and create single-coverage opportunities down the field for Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery.

Game preview: QB - Moon Mullin: Jay Cutler is finally on the move, and the early results have been promising. But will he be allowed that same freedom now that those scheming against him know his tendencies?

Game preview: RB - Moon Mullin: Making Gerald McCoy run to catch Matt Forte on screen plays is one way to lessen his vertical game against Cutler and also to wear him and the others on a solid Buccaneers line down.

Game preview: WR/TE - Moon Mullin: The trademark of Lovie Smith teams has long been a base Cover-2 scheme that relies on safety help and forcing teams to remain patient and live without big plays. But Tampa Bay has played more "man" than has been Smith’s norm.

Game preview: O-line - Moon Mullin: The Bears O-line will have their hands full on Sunday, as the Buccaneers have nine different players with at least a share of a sack.

Game preview: D-line - Moon Mullin: The need for pressure in the face of Josh McCown becomes even more of a priority against a game-managernot given to wild throws, and blessed with a pair of wideouts bigger and more physical than Jeffery and Marshall.

Game preview: LB - Moon Mullin: The Bears need to disrupt Josh McCown Sunday and in order to do that, they will have to try to get some pressure from their linebackers - in nickel or base schemes.

Game preview: DB - Moon Mullin: Last Sunday, the Bears' WR duo gave the Vikings corners fits because of their size. With the Bucs coming into town, the same issue may now face the Bears' DBs.

Game preview - Chris Boden's three Bears necessities heading into Sunday's game at Soldier Field.  Moon MullinBears' true opponent Sunday isn’t Bucs: it’s in the mirror.

Game notes - Adam L. Jahns: Time was Trestman's enemy from Day 1, but buy-in from young players is there; unsung spotlight on David Bass; Mel Tucker breaks down Josh McCown's game.

Game notes - Bob LeGere: Jay Cutler hoping for continued use of planned rollouts; offense still looking for its first 30-point game of 2014; Bears can't give McCown time to throw; Jared Allen aware how much sacks are overvalued.

He won't show it, but you know it: beating Bears big deal for Lovie - David Haugh: As much as winning Sunday means personally to Lovie Smith for reasons easy to understand, it means more professionally to Marc Trestman.

Bears mailbag - Michael C. Wright: Should Bears let Matt Forte enter last year of deal?


Bears mailbag - Is-Hub Arkush's readers' Q&As. Is Marc Trestman an 'offensive genius'?

Football Outsiders - Ben Muth with a look at the Bears' O-line play from last week's win over the Vikings [tip o' the cap to JW_Redmon].

[Video] - Jeff Joniak, Tom Thayer, and Larry Mayer are joined by former Bears linebacker Jim Morrissey on Bears Roundtable to discuss his career and other Bears topics.  Parts: 2 ... 3 ... 4 ... 5.

[Video] - Michael Ola answers three off the field questions for this weeks[sic] edition of 3 And Out.

Stock rising on the field, Alshon Jeffery subject of IPO - Patrick Finley: Monday, a company called Fantex began offering reservations for 835,000 shares of stock in Jeffery’s career.

[Video] - Take the field pregame with the Chicago Bears Flag Runners.

Bears history - with a photo gallery of legendary Bears QB Sid Luckman, who won four championships for the team and still holds the franchise record for TD passes.

Polish sausage

Know thy enemy: Lions - Michael Rothstein: There are many reasons why Detroit's running game has been struggling, but with the top 3 backs healthy again things may be about to change.  Dave Dye: Three storylines to follow in Lions-Patriots.

Know thy enemies - Kevin Chroust's Packers-Vikings preview: Mike Zimmer heads into this week less concerned with the AP situation than he is with solving defensive issues that could be magnified against the explosive Packers.

Know thy enemy: Packers - Rob Demovsky: Getting inside Dom Capers' blitzing mind.   (AP): Peppers enjoying life with the Packers.

Chicago sports radio hosts find out they're toast on air - (FoxSports): Ben Finfer learned from Twitter during his show that the station would be shut down by the end of the year and he would be out of a job.

Cheerleaders - The best of week 11, from ...


A foreign entry into the Mandopop market.  I don't speak Mandarin, so I can't vouch for her pronunciation.