B-E-A-RS BEARS BEARS BEARS
Ok, maybe that doesn't work quite as well. This week, as we lead up to the big MNF matchup against the Jets, we're talking to David Wyatt (@D_wyatt13) from Gang Green Nation. We talk Rex Ryan's seat, Geno Smith, injuries and more.
Check out the answers I gave them over at GGN here. A big thanks to David and their crew for the great work they do. Hopefully they'll be sad tonight.
WCG: Rex Ryan started out with some pretty solid success early, losing Conference games in his first two seasons. From 2011 to present, he's 23-27. Surely his seat has to be getting a little warm, right? The contract extension he signed this year would seem to suggest otherwise.
GGN: After we failed to make the play-offs last season, I thought he may be in trouble. However his extension was announced in the locker room by the owner and the players erupted. They love playing for this guy and we have been through a tough few years but there is still a lot of belief around the franchise that Rex is the one to lead us. He is a fantastic defensive coordinator, however we really needs to improve his game management and he needs to stay a head coach and not revert back to his defensive coordinator tendencies. If we fail to make the play-offs again this year, he could well be out, however if we fail to reach them but still end up with a winning record, we may see him back. This roster has a lot of talent and in terms of the cap space we will have, we're in great shape. So maybe he gets one more year after this if we don't make the post-season.
WCG: If the Bears want to be successful Monday night, what's the weakness they should attack?
GGN: Unfortunately for us, our weakness plays right into your strength. We are extremely light, inconsistent and raw at the cornerback spots and in our secondary as a whole. Our first round selection from 2013 Dee Milliner is unlikely to play and so that means we'll have a 6th round converted safety (Antonio Allen) and a UDFA from 2011 starting at the cornerback positions. Against your receivers, you could throw it up all day and we could really struggle. Don't sleep on Allen, he has some fantastic instincts but if you can get him to have to turn and run with receivers, then that's going to be a problem for us. We have our 2014 first round safety starting in big-hitter Calvin Pryor, but he is more suited to playing in the box than out in space where we have him at the minute. However if he picks up a head of steam, any receiver going over the middle could get rocked.
WCG: Geno Smith is in his second year. Last year, he turned the ball over 25 times. He's currently on pace to do about the same, with two interceptions and a fumble in his first two games. Are these turnovers correctable for him, and is he poised to be a stable part of this offense for NY to build around?
GGN: You know Geno has been fine to start the season, a couple of poor decisions but his team-mates are not helping him out. They are definitely correctable and I'm seeing a ton of improvement in his general game. He definitely has all the talent you'd want, he can move the chains through the air or with his feet. He has good zip, good placement and he's starting to read defenses a lot better and work through his reads. I think he is definitely a QB we can build a team around and I have to say that we rely so much on Decker and our management team hasn't done a good enough job filling this roster with receiving talent. He still has a long way to go, but he's only in his second year, I remember when QB's were allowed to develop for 3-4 years before there were any expectations on them. Unfortunately in today's NFL, you're expected to instantly produce. Geno will be fine, and I really do think he'll turn into a very good quarterback in this league, maybe he'll never be elite, but he'll be very good.
WCG: Any injuries that Bears fans should know about?
GGN: A couple of really big ones. Our #1 corner Dee Milliner is listed as doubtful but the rumour is he will definitely miss this game. He was brought back too quickly last week against the Packers and he was torched for an 80 yards TD. Eric Decker hasn't practised all week with a hamstring problem he picked up in the third quarter in Green Bay, but he went through drills on Saturday and he is listed as questionable. I imagine he'll play because without him, we really don't have a great deal. Other than that, we should be good to go.
WCG: You can pick one person off of the Bears roster. Who is it, and why?
GGN: It's probably too early to say Kyle Fuller, but I think you've got a great corner there. I would probably go with Alshon Jeffrey, he looks as though he's developing into one of the finest receivers in the league. We had a chance to take him in the draft, and we took Stephen Hill instead, who's recently been cut. Talk about a poor decision. I think a combination of Jeffrey and Decker would really make us a dangerous offensive unit, especially when you add Kerley in the slot and a tight end tandem of Cumberland and Amaro, who we all hope will develop into the next great athletic tight end.
WCG: Bonus: Score prediction, please.
GGN: This is a tough one. If the Bears get their passing game going, it could be a long night.....however if we can force Jay into a couple of turnovers and monopolise the game clock, I can see us coming out with the victory in front of our own crowd. So I'm going to go with a 27-24 Jets victory.
Thanks again David. Best of luck against everyone who isn't Chicago.
To buy tickets, visit the NFL Ticket Exchange.