Chicago Bears vs. Atlanta Falcons
September 11, 2011
Game Day Observations
- As I entered the stadium the beer vendors were rested and ready for the new season—complete with catchy sales lines. My personal favorite… “I have a 15 yard, personal foul against that man who did not buy a beer from me.” More entertaining and impressive, though, was a nationally televised National Anthem by Jim Cornelison. Waving their miniature American flags, the crowd was electric on this anniversary of September 11th.
- There were cheers and jeers when Lance Briggs was introduced despite his recent contract grumblings. I think Briggs should quit whining about his contract. He signed the deal and knew what he was getting into. As a fan, I cheered Briggs because I want my team to do well. Do I agree with what he is trying to accomplish? No. But Briggs is an integral part of the Bears’ success.
- I guess Mike Martz was re-confirming in the first quarter that the end around play does not work. To Martz’s credit he did create screen plays to gain positive yards and a touchdown by Matt Forte. Can Matt Forte get paid, please?
- The offensive line did an admirable job pass blocking for the offense, but the running game needs work. It’s back to the chalkboard for Mike Tice to find the run game and to incorporate Chris Spencer at either center or guard while Lance Louis is out with injury.
- Brian Urlacher. Enough said. Along with his defensive teammates, he held the Falcons to 6 points (6 other points on a Cutler interception for touchdown) and limited a powerful offense to no scores in the red zone and only 30% third down efficiency. Couple that with 5 sacks and constant pressure on Matt Ryan and that’s a pretty good day. However, there was one scary statistic for the defense; they allowed 7.9 yards per carry. This isn’t good for a defense known to shut down the run.
- I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Jay Cutler, whose passer rating was 107.8. He was more impressive than the numbers show, displaying his comfort and command of the offense and on his throws. Cutler checked down on receivers when needed and threw the ball out of bounds when the play was not there something he did consistently in preseason.
- Did anyone tell the Atlanta Falcons that preseason football is over and the regular season started today? Bear Down, Chicago Bears.