Posted September 14, 2012

Bears must go back to the drawing board after awful showing in Green Bay

Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers, Uncategorized

The Bears’ Jay Cutler was sacked seven times, including 3½ by the Packers’ Clay Matthews. (Jeffrey Phelps/AP)

Jay Cutler’s statistics at halftime on Thursday night looked like this: 4-of-9 passing for 37 yards, three sacks, an interception and a 16.7 QB rating. In that same two-quarter span, Green Bay’s punter — Green Bay’s punter — Tim Masthay had 27 yards passing, a touchdown and a perfect 158.3 rating.

And that’s pretty much all you need to know about Green Bay’s 23-10 over visiting Chicago.

The Bears were supposed to have all they needed on offense this year to keep pace with the Green Bays of the NFL world. Cutler was back healthy, Matt Forte had the new contract he’d been so desperate for and Brandon Marshall was on board to give Chicago the game-changing weapon it badly needed at receiver.

Two weeks into the regular season, and we’re already asking if all those playmakers matter. They certainly did not on Thursday, as the Bears’ offensive line again opened the floodgates up front — at one point, Cutler became so incensed with his lack of protection that he screamed at immobile left tackle J’Marcus Webb, then bumped him as the two made it to Chicago’s sideline.

Cutler finished the game with a measly 27.8 rating, though he was in single digits prior to a late TD pass to tight end Kellen Davis. He wound up being sacked seven times. Some of Chicago’s game plan was undone by Forte exiting with an ankle injury in the second half, but the damage was done by that point.

And if this is all Chicago has to offer, well …

Entering Thursday night, Cutler had played two prior games at Lambeau Field. The Bears lost both, with Cutler throwing six interceptions and just one touchdown. His Green Bay nightmare simply continued Thursday, as he was sacked seven times and threw four interceptions.

“I think it’s the game plan which we have,” Matthews said when he was asked why the Packers have so much success against Cutler. “We were able to get after the quarterback.”

Blame the Bears’ offensive line all you want (and it deserves a whole heap of finger-pointing). Or blame Cutler for losing his cool in the opening minutes, then responding with poor throw after poor throw. Heck, blame Forte’s injury, if you need an excuse.

The reality is that the Bears’ effort in this game not only put them clearly behind Green Bay in the NFC North pecking order, but it raised serious questions about just how good Chicago can be in 2012.

Let’s face it: The Packers did not exactly play like world-beaters Thursday — aside from Clay Matthews, who had 3.5 sacks on his own and proved unblockable all night, allowing Green Bay to rush just four and sit everyone else in pass coverage. But Aaron Rodgers took five sacks himself and threw a pick in the fourth quarter, as the Packers’ offense struggled to find points.

“We’ve got to get better,” Rodgers told NFL Network’s Alex Flanagan after the win. “Our defense took a lot of trash in the media this week, (but) they played incredible. The defense … if they play like that, we’re going to be tough to beat.”

The nicest play of the night came from Green Bay’s special teams. Facing a 4th-and-26 late in the first half, the Packers lined up for a long field goal and instead pulled off a brilliant fake, with Masthay, the holder on the play, shoveling a pass to Tom Crabtree for a 27-yard touchdown.

Green Bay needed this performance, one week after flopping at home against a San Francisco team that may very well be the best the NFC has to offer. Even an ugly win will help the Packers steady their ship, in spite of Rodgers’ shaky outing, prior to a stretch that sees them play four road games in five weeks,  with the one home outing coming against New Orleans and its explosive offense.

Chicago finds itself 1-1 now, just like Green Bay, but with a boatload more questions.

There’s no shame in losing at Lambeau; losing in this manner, however, is another issue. It took nearly 53 minutes of game action — until the 7:20 mark of the fourth quarter — for Marshall to make his one and only catch of the game. Green Bay defensive back Tramon Williams wound up catching one more ball than Marshall, as he finished with two interceptions and absolutely put the clamps on Chicago’s top receiver.

Hardly what the Bears had in mind when they traded for Marshall this offseason.

Cutler did not even look Marshall’s way in the first half. When he finally did so in the third quarter, Marshall let a touchdown pass slip through his fingers after breaking wide open near the Green Bay goal line. Name it, and it went wrong for the Bears.

Now, the questions will begin yet again — about Cutler, about the offensive line, about Forte’s health and, oh yeah, about Marshall’s ability to be the threat the Chicago offense wants.

The only clear answer we have right now is that Chicago still has a lot of work to do if it wants to get over the top against Green Bay.

48 comments
WayneAllen
WayneAllen

Of course the Packers are alive and well. It's you lameass sports media journalists and reporters that are the problem. You pounce on any little thing there is trying to create a story. Anybody who thought the Packers were in trouble after losing to the 49ers last week needs a check up from the neck up.

RussellRings
RussellRings

The Bears beat themselves. Plain and simple.

Chaos
Chaos

Bears O-line is a continuing disaster but, even when they gave Cutler time, he had no one to throw to because receivers' routes were all downfield.  There was no one to dump the ball off to to keep the defense honest.  OK, Cutler made some awful throws, too, but the playcalling didn't do him any favors and the O-line, well, a sieve is a sieve.

jb2
jb2

Sorry; saw the game like everyone else, and will admit up front, I’m not a fan of either team.  The Packers didn’t stomp on the Bears, 1 trick play by GB, and a slew of dropped catches by both teams, but most notably  Chi. cost the windy city warriors the game. As Mayock repeated over, and over, and over again, Chicago imploded, and beat themselves.  Green Bay had a few well timed sacks by and over-hyped Mathews, survived to go 1-0.  All in all it looked like a pre-season effort by both teams and is making Detroit a more credible contender in the NFC North.

Just saying.

canuck89
canuck89

Obviously the Bears have problems.  Not the least of which is the fact that Cutler has a bad case of "pick-itis".  Many NFL QBs have it (tendency to throw picks when under pressure) but Cutler has it worse than most.  GB knows this....thus pressure the QB was the defensive game plan. 

Let's remember that before he was drafted the word on Cutler was "good athleticism, big arm, tendency to throw picks".  For this reason, he was on NO ONE's list.  If not for Shanahan he'd be at home on his couch (11th overall pick....shocking EVERYONE except Shanahan himself).  He's a backup QB at best.

Amongst NFL teams there are thousands of scouts.  Although it can happen in rare cases, it is virtually unheard of that a franchise QB is discovered that everyone else misses.  I don't think Cutler is an exception.  If I were the Chicago GM, I'd be on the lookout for a better QB and stay away from leaning so much on the pass in the mean time.

DonB
DonB

As a Bear fan living in Wisconsin I am tired of being embarassed and humiliated by these pathetic performances.  The biggest problem with the Bears is they have the worst ownership in the NFL.  There needs to be arule against inheriting a NFL franchise.  We suck.,

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

Jeez, what a terrible game. The Packers were lousy and they still stomped the Bears. And I give a lot of the blame to Cutler. He just doesn't have the temperament to be a successful QB. It's the same thing every year. Whining, crying, and bad plays. Seems to me the Bears better keep looking for the QB of the future.

AF Whigs
AF Whigs

QBs probably get too much credit a lot of the time, but they also take a vastly disproportionate amount of the blame in games like this.   Was Cutler really the problem?  As much as he was hit and with as many passes as were dropped, he had NO help from his team.   I'm not a Bears fan and I have no particular interest in Cutler, but fans and the sports media are so freakin hypocritical in so many ways.   From what I saw it's hard to talk about Cutler's performance, as though the O-line and receivers have nothing to do with him.  Dropped passes shouldn't count against a QB - it should be like errors in baseball.

 

Anyway - this is a common problem in the NFL, especially with poor teams - the O-line is terrible.  So how often does the team react?  They draft a #1 QB and feed him to the lions, then call him a bust - which is just ridiculous.  How much talent is wasted in the NFL because teams rush players based on their high-dollar initial contracts?

 

Look back to two teams who ended up winning Super Bowls - St. Louis and Baltimore.  Both drafted talented O tackles in the first round  - Jonathan Ogden & Orlando Pace.   A few years later, they had built teams that won championships.   Perhaps an oversimplification, but I would venture that a mediocre QB has a better chance behind a good O-line than a good QB does behind a terrible one.

JasonFowler
JasonFowler

I love how noone is giving credit to GB for the sacks.... it was the OL of the Bears that caused them.  To some point it is true.  The OL sucked yesterday before the game and everyone was saying it, but Bears fans would have NONE of that talk.  Today Cutler is a victim.  I like the guy, but he is not a victim.  He has got to use the All Might offense that you ding dongs were praising yesterday and make better decisions.

RobertGraham
RobertGraham

I've said it a million times.  A good offensive line makes an average QB look good, and a crappy one will make even the best (Manning, Brady, Brees, Montana...) look like crap.  A quarterback can't do his job running for his life, or when he's lying on his backside wondering "where'd that guy come from?"

SusanBarth
SusanBarth

And da Bears STILL SUCK!!!  Go Pack!  Maybe this will teach Cutler to keep his mouth shut before a game.

amolad
amolad

Here we go again. A host of bad sports journalists and ignorant fans keep blaming Cutler.

Once you read the stat that he was sacked seven times (not to mention the knock downs, hurry ups, etc.) anyone with half a brain should be able to deduce that this is STILL an offensive line problem.

The Bears organization STILL refuses to admit that they have a talent deficit on their O-line.

If you put Jay Cutler on the Pats or Giants, you have 4,000 passing yards.

If you put Manning or Brady on the Bears, you get what happened last night.

As the Giants have taught the Pats--in TWO Super Bowls now--if we keep knocking your QB on his ass, we win, no matter who he is.

A new offensive scheme is nice--anything is better than Mike Martz's thirty-year-old system-- but that STILL does not negate that football is a game of one-on-one matchups.

If you look at this weeks SI, there's an article on offensive linemen. In the sidebar, they feature Uche Nwaneri of the Jags (1st round pick), Eric Woob of the Bills (!st round pick), Amini Silatolu (2nd Round pick)......and J'Marcus Webb. Seventh round draft pick.

You cannot coach lack of talent. You cannot make a player have more talent by working and working what's not there.

The Bears have come out of a decade where they had the worst GM in football. He virtually ruined whatever potential they had by his incompetence. In picking talent, he was the anti-Belichick.

This is NOT a QB problem.  Let me repeat that: This is NOT a quarterback problem. This is a magic thinking problem. A denial problem. Your offensive line stinks and you refuse to admit that your organization made mistakes and you won't do anything about it.

In what looks to be Lovie Smith's last year as coach of the Chicago Bears, expect more of the same. Against lesser quality teams, they will score. Against tougher teams with a good pass rush, expect Cutler to get sacked, hit, and run for his life.

 

RCH
RCH

Kudos to the Bears defense though. 4 interceptions by Cutler and they only gave 16 points to one of the best offenses in the league.

 

DanScavo
DanScavo

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B_ing it!!!

Just wondering
Just wondering

 @jb2

 Thanks for you "honesty".  If you're looking to be a NFL analyst, keep your day job.

illegitimato
illegitimato

 @jb2 Six sacks in two games is not "over-hyped", considering 2.5 cam vs. the 49'ers. Be a Lions homer all you want, but C'mon, Man!

moonmelodic
moonmelodic

 @jb2 yeah staffords 3 int game barely squeaking out a win against the rams at home....ok dude

Just wondering
Just wondering

 Y'all keep believing Cutler's a good quarterback.  Packer fines like seeing in Chicago.  Almost 27% of his "completions" went to Green Bay.

 

DanMisner
DanMisner

well he plyed bad,but dude no quarterback can play well when they are on their back 7plus times,last week after a bad start he looked like a pro bowler,BECAUSE he HAD TIME TO THROW!!!!!!! rodgers looked awful too!! the packer offense didn't do much,one well played trick play on fourth down for a touchdown taken away,and the score is 16--13 hardly a high powered packer offense right? when cutler has time to trow he is a top teir QB.. Da bears would have but better offupgrading their offensive line in the off season and tice isn't good enough to coach pee wee football!! for greenbay a win is a win but both teams looked like a substandard division III football team!!!!!!

Mike26
Mike26

 @canuck89 Did Cutler steal your girl or something earlier in life?

MonteCox
MonteCox

Cutler had a bad game but he is the best QB the Bears have had in 50 years. He is not a backup QB, that is laughable.

DanMisner
DanMisner

 @DonB  i too am a wisconson bear fan.and i agree with you don, but im pretty sure the McCasky's don't own the team.i think they sold the team. and what gets me is some of the really "intelligent"(LoL) packer fans are gloating and saying how awesome the packers are this year. well packer nation i hate to burst your bubble but so far the pack are average looking at best LoL but the intelligent fans (LoL) are still talkling a greenbay superbowl GO pack GO (right home when the playoffs start) LMMFAO!!!!!!

Bob4
Bob4

 @DonB Hey Don, sorry about the Bears. But when you say, "worst ownership," compared to the Dolphins, the Bears are clones of Albert Einstein.

WayneAllen
WayneAllen

 @Rickapolis

 I never saw a championship team in any sport yet where every win was a "pretty" win. Those "W's" sure are pretty though, eh?

DanMisner
DanMisner

 @Rickapolis they stomped the bears huh? if thats what you seriously believe then( no offense) but you really don't know anything about football sir,LoLLoL you should stick to watching dancing with the stars or GLEE after that statement those shows seem more up your alley LoL NO offense but really dude LMMFAO!!!!!

Tyrone
Tyrone

 @AF Whigs This is sooo bang on and logical it's comical yet people continue to overlook the obvious. Even a Peyton Manning can look QUITE ordinary if say, a defensive line rush like the Chargers, blow up his line. This is why I hate the argument that you can't be an elite/great quarterback unless you win a Super Bowl. Football above ALL OTHERS is the definition of a team sport.

Thomas10
Thomas10

It starts with the O-line; if the O-line stinks, the entire offense stinks.

drwherley
drwherley

 @AF Whigs Cleveland (Joe Thomas), Arizona (Levi Brown), Miami (Jake Long), and St. Louis (Jason Smith) all used this approach in recent years -- using a top-5 pick on a premier OT.  All of those teams still stink, primarily because they still haven't found a top notch QB.

pcoppney
pcoppney

 @AF Whigs Unfortunately he was not that good in Denver either.  At some point you have to say it could be him.  The line in Chicago is horrible, but Cutler threw interceptions on 3 step drop slant routes.

HChrisGill
HChrisGill

 @AF Whigs Yeah... The O-Line is straight up garbage. I don't  know the last time they ponied up some dough in Free Agency to beef of the line.

 

The Bears used to be known for having the best interior linemen on either side of the ball. for the past 6 years or so, they've made due with a patchwork mediocre big bodies. Now, they are just bad.

Loki
Loki

 @RobertGrahamthat doesn't explain his poor throws when he wasn't getting rushed...cutler is just another grossman type QB....he CAN throw it well, he just doesn't do so very often....

 

shepteach
shepteach

 @amolad The Packers had a crappy O-Line, as evidenced by Rodgers getting sacked 50 times and they still did good.  The next season they won the Super Bowl and their Quarterback ended up being the SB MVP....Unfortunately for the Bears it is a O-Line and a QB problem.  Cutler is not even in the same League as Rodgers, Manning, or Brady.

Loki
Loki

 @amoladcutler quit on his team again...just like the NFC championship a couple years back...

 

RicoTabligan
RicoTabligan

 @amolad but you did realize those two int's were his fault for holding the ball waaaaaay to long instead of just checking it down. 

SusanBarth
SusanBarth

Cutler is a whining crybaby and a drama queen. I defended that guy two years ago when the Packers beat him in the championship game.  No more!  He should stop with the trash talking and play football.

SusanBarth
SusanBarth

You're crediting the Bears defense for Cutler's 4 interceptions?  What the hell are you smoking?

DaveSteinle
DaveSteinle

 @DanMisner , LOL, you laugh, but where is YOUR team going?  They will only get to the Super Bowl if someone buys them tickets.

DaveSteinle
DaveSteinle

 @DanMisner , Here's something you obviously don't know about football.  Beating a 2-14 team doesn't mean much.  Make your jokes about Dancing with the Stars, but really the funny part is, Driver was dancing after scoring on your sad sack team.  GB already has an edge on the Bears in the division.

AF Whigs
AF Whigs

Agreed - but I guess my point was that in my mind getting an expensive QB in the 1st round makes no sense until you can protect them.  It takes time.  St. Louis was a bottom dweller when they got Pace in 1997.    I'm not saying it's a magic bullet, by any means.  I just get tired of the young QBs getting ground up and spit out on terrible teams and all the blame gets put on the player when the team isn't really giving them anything to work with.

Mike26
Mike26

 @HChrisGill  @AF Whigs Free agency or draft, the Bear have virtually ignored the OL for over a decade.  They continue to reap what they don't sow.

Loki
Loki

 @SusanBarthWith your apparent lack of reading comprehension, I have to ask, what are YOU smoking?

 

benzuckerman1
benzuckerman1

 @SusanBarth I think that the point is that the Packers could have/should have scored a lot more than 16 points of of four interceptions.  I am not "defending" the Bears (I'm a solid Packer fan) but that was the point RCH was making, and it is a valid one.

 

PaulSlaby
PaulSlaby

 @SusanBarth RCH probably meant that the interceptions caused a short field for the Packers to score but the defense only gave up 16 points.....I smoke Lucky Strike

RCH
RCH

 @SusanBarth  @Loki  @ Susan. Maybe you don't know what Kudos means but what everyone else here has to tried to explain is the Bears defense did a good job against the Packers offense period. Forget the interceptions since you are having a problem with that.

Trackbacks

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