It’s been increasingly more difficult to enjoy Bears fandom since about week 5. There’s been a downward spiral feel to the whole operation which has been fueled by the combination of a disheartening losing streak and a tragicomedy of offensive impotence.
So I came into this game determined to enjoy my Bears no matter the outcome.
You can guess how that went.
It’s 3rd and 4, at midfield...
...the Bears offense regroups as we cut to Bill Lazor in the booth, furiously clipboarding up the perfect play to keep the Bears on track. He calls it down to Nicky Foles, who eagerly relays it to his teammates, who set up quickly. The ball snaps. An unblocked rusher sacks Foles within 2 seconds for a 7 yard loss.
Go ahead, call your run plays away from Roquan Smith
It makes it easier for him to drag you down from behind in the backfield. Hahahahaha. We’ll were talking about Smith, his team-leading 14 tackles, team-leading 1 sacks, and team’s only tackles for loss, were 14 of few bright spots in this game.
Seriously though, the Bears miss tackles on normal running backs
If I had to make a complaint about the Bears defense, it would be how frequently the first tackler fails to bring down his target. But I don’t have to, so let’s just call them perfect. Either way, it wasn’t crazy to expect Davin Cook would slip a few past them.
Nobody expects a Khalil Mack interception
People are always mad when Mack drops back into coverage. Usually it’s Bears fans, but tonight it was Kirk Cousins, who was so distracted by the move that he threw right into Mack’s welcome arms.
Khalil Mack’s 33 return yards
Would have made him the Bears top rusher if they were rushing yards and the Bears second receiver if they were receiving yards. Put that Bear on offense!
Cordarrelle Patterson has got himself some legs
If the Bears were never destined to have offensive superstars, we’ve “made up for it” with a wealth of transcendent special teams dream runs.
About those Bears special teams
Dwayne Harris’ catch every ball motto was welcome after watching Ted Ginn’s ball-is-lava punt philosophy in play earlier in the season. That plan only works if you actually catch the ball though. Anthony Miller looked good stepping in after Harris was put in the dog house.
Nick Foles sacrifices his body in the most heroic incomplete pass the league has ever seen
Seriously. He gave his all just to avoid a sack. Sure, the throw was 50-50 an interception, but he pulled it off.
Da Box Score
Is not encouraging...
Finding joy in this Bears game was a tall order. I can’t pretend I succeeded to the level I’d hoped. It doesn’t feel the same as when I could root for the bumbling John Fox Bears did anything mediocre. The difference is that there is talent on this team that deserves to be rewarded for their play, and there’s (intermittent) reasons for hope. I genuinely like Matt Nagy even as my optimism for his coaching wanes. Even Ryan Pace has his charms and successes, and I don’t enjoy the thought watching Staley hand him his pink slip.