Bernstein: Bears All Kinds Of Dumb


A civic palm-to-the-forehead slap is in order after that hot garbage.

The play of the game gave us a nice microcosm of the multilevel stupidity that has Bears fans wondering if even the Buffalo Bills are beatable two weeks from now.

Let’s look at it:  Bears lead the Redskins 14-10 as they open the second half with the ball.  From near midfield, Jay Cutler finds Earl Bennett open, and he rolls into the end zone but is marked down on the one.  Lovie Smith challenges despite solid evidence that the call is correct.  Still, it’s a scoring play, so we’ll give him some latitude.  Challenge rightly overruled, call stands.

First and goal from the one (Bears 0-9 from a yard out to that point in 2010, by the way, which is unconscionable).  The Skins’ Albert Haynesworth diagnoses a Cutler sneak over center and stuffs the play.  Cutler desperately extends the ball, and it is knocked away and recovered by London Fletcher.  No challenge from Smith, despite goalline video of the ball breaking the plane, and showing that his momentum was halted before the fumble.

So Cutler was dumb with the ball, needlessly straining rather than live for another try on second down.  Smith was dumb to not challenge, and dumber in explaining why he didn’t.  “Considered it quickly,” he said.  “Normally, if it’s a critical play like that, we will challenge.”

Um, whaa?

What was so abnormal about this critical play that you didn’t, coach?  Again, it’s a scoring play.

You pay the price of a timeout for the chance to take control of an important home game.  Bears could go up 21-10, which changes the offensive risk tolerance after.

Perhaps an 11-point lead keeps Cutler from flinging weak jump-balls to shrimpy receivers, as he did in a second half of recklessness and poor mechanics that was exacerbated by the wideouts’ apparent lack of desire to come back to the ball.

Cutler defended his judgement in throwing repeatedly toward DeAngelo Hall, who tied an NFL record with four interceptions — all in the second half.  “If we had to play them tomorrow, I’d still go after him every time I could,” Cutler said.  “There’s no reason to shy away from him.”

I can think of four, actually.

The offensive line so lauded by Mike Martz continued to leak, remaining on pace to lead the league in sacks allowed.  The pass/run ratio was 44/16.  Last week’s numbers of 47/12, remember, caused Smith to remark that the right balance would be “fifty-fifty.”

Yesterday’s thought from Smith?

“When I talk about balance, I’m not talking about fifty-fifty or anything like that.”

Oh. Sorry.  Excuse me while I bang my head against my desk now.

More from Dan Bernstein
  • Chet's Inflated Ego

    Just for effing-up the (non-)Challenge, Lovie should be fired, today.

    • Mike abbruzzese

      Should have been fired 3 years ago

      • Chet's Inflated Ego


    • Pulseczar

      Who’s going to fire him? The guy who himself should be unemployed in Jerry Angelo?

      Angelo should fire Smith then fire himself.

      • Chet's Inflated Ego

        Ted should can Jerry and Lovie and then resign.
        The Three Stooges they are.

      • AT3374

        Nah , he’d mess that up also

      • jefe

        agreed. jerry is one of the worst evaluators of talent and lovie can’t coach at an nfl level. chicago bears deserve better than this.

  • 2nd Half Adjustments

    LOL well done, Bernstein. Oh good gravy, the Bears are bad.

  • AT3374

    They should take the red challenge flag away from Lovie , he’s bad at it . His logic on not challenging ranks right up there when they were running the ball well but stopped and when questioned about it he stated ” they were going to stop it eventually ” .

    And can we finally admit that Kreutz is done ? Hanesworth jumped over him like a table full of moon pies was in front of him .

    And why exactly did the Bears sign C.Taylor ?

    At least we have two weeks to get ready for the Bills , but the way that handled teh Ravens DEF yesterday , that game ain’t a forgone conclusion either .

  • AT3374

    At least we have the Blackhawks and Bulls to look forward to

  • Chet's Inflated Ego

    AT3374 is dead-on.
    Kreutz has been playing on fumes, reputation, and lack-of-replacement for several years now.
    Hanesworth has maybe three good games a year from the ‘Skins, and Kreutz gave him one gift-wrapped yesterday.

  • Lydell

    Easy on the desk. You break it, you bought it.

  • Chet's Inflated Ego

    Does the “B” on his hat stand for “Bonehead”???

  • KazooBoy

    AT3374 comment about Haynesworth…moonpies…brilliant.

    Don’t know where to place the blame because it’s on everything but the D…bad line, bad coaching, Cutler needs a leash, yada yada yada…everything affects everything else.

    • AT3374

      Thanks KazooBoy , that should earn me a Krusty the Clown ” Hey Hey ” drop for the boys

      • Chet's Inflated Ego

        That was a great line, LOL, and kudos to AT3374.

        BTW, I nominate Hainesworth as the jock most likely to go from a 100M contract to living in a homeless shelter in 10 years. He bought multiple yachts, houses, etc. etc. and seems quite likely that he will just pee it all away and then owe the IRS a ton of dough etc.

  • Chet's Inflated Ego

    I agree with everyone that The Bills won’t be a walk in the park up in Toronto next game. They really played The Ravens well.

    The Defense is all The Bears have.
    Special Teams have been good but not great.
    The Offense is awful.
    Balance, my arse.
    So if I grade the Defense at A-, SpTeams at a B and Offense at F…that’s a C overall and cannot cut it.
    Hub said it will take a disaster like 4-12 to get ’em all fired.
    I’m ready for a disaster, to invest in a horrible year, if it will get those nincompoops fired and replaced by top-quality NFL people.
    Bring in Parcells as GM and let him hire a new Coach.

  • Denver Smeghead

    Are we approaching funbad with this Bears team yet? Cause I look at that second half schedule now, and I see a lot of losses. Hopefully enough to get everybody fired.

    And let me say: being a Denver resident who hates the Broncos, watching that game yesterday with the Raiders beating the Broncos like a rented mule was a treat.

  • Mike Leahy

    Lovie is probably a nice guy. Seemed to be a very good defensive coordinator. He has been a lousy head coach from day one. The offensive line play is awful and Lovie won’t admit it is a huge problem. If the bears run the table from this point he should still be fired. This time hire a real head coach.


    Since when did Jason (Jay) Cutler become bad at football? We can blame the offensive line all we want for allowing 4 more sacks of the Bears’ supposed franchise QB, but this latest loss points clearly at the direction of a guy I now refer to as Jason Cutler! It’s bad enough he threw 4 interceptions, shades of last year when he finished the season with an NFL-high 26 picks, but Cutler’s decision making leaves a lot to be desired! He’s supposed to be a lot better than this, and as far as I’m concerned, he’s known in my book as Jason until he resembles the franchise QB this team’s been waiting years for! I’m that upset at #6 in Bears’ navy & orange! This loss is Cutler’s fault!

  • KazooBoy

    I just don’t trust the McCaskeys to hire the right guys at GM, coach, etc. They don’t have the stomes to hire Cowher so it’ll be another middling defensive coordinator. My guess is Leslie Frazier.

    Lovie may be a nice guy but he’s also arrogant and condescending and answers questions like we’re watching the games with our eyes gouged out.

  • Jaimie in Hoffman Estates

    Lovie looks clueless out there. This is funny bad, and just sickening. The Bears have a long road ahead oif them, the next couple of years.

  • Beverly Brewmaster

    What a horrible sports weekend in Chicago… The Hawks drop back-to-back games, Northwestern teases us against undefeated Michigan State before blowing the game in the second half, Notre Dame officially becomes Navy’s whipping boy, the Bears lose, and then we can’t even enjoy Favre imploding on national television because it’s at the hands of the Packers. I want that device they had in Men in Black that erases your memory…

  • AT3374

    Fun bad starts if they don’t completely dominate Buffalo in two weeks , I mean dominate them like the Raiders did to Denver yesterday .

    And is Josh Mc Daniels still the smartest head coach in the league ? I’m sure Terry got a kick outta seeing him get the Dr. Rasmussen treatment yesterday .

    And I think Farve and the Vikes are done . Chilly should be fired on principle for not going down the field before halftime when they had the defense reeling . Then he has the NERVE to toss Farve under the bus ( though he deserved it , bad game ) . They are toast .

    Great job Chilly , now go back to teaching high school science ya goof ball

  • merklesboner

    I think it’s time for Bears upper echelon to get back in touch with Bill Cowher and clean-out the current administration once and for all, replacing them with knowledgeable professionals. Until then, it’s becoming “fun bad”.

  • KazooBoy

    Things are going to get really bad in Minnesota after Childress basically drew a line in the sand. It will not end well for either or both of them.

    Bears = bad; Detroit = Detroit; GB in the driver’s seat but all these teams have issues.

  • Chet's Inflated Ego

    Favre and Chilly will each be gone by the end of the year.
    BTW, were all the mohels in Mississippi trained by Tim Tebow or something?

    Yesterday I was thinking of the old line from Bum Phillips about Don Shula, “He can take his’n and beat your’n, or take your’n and beat his’n.” If Plastic Face had Cutler and Lovie had McNabb, I still think The Bears would have lost….would have found a way to lose.

    • Likquid Swordz

      Lovie could’ve had Dan Marino and Plastic face have Cade McNown and Lovie still would’ve lost that game

  • meesohawnee

    is it safe to use the name Jay George yet?

    • Chet's Inflated Ego

      Jeff George???

      Million Dollar Arm, ten-cent head, team-mates hated his guts.

    • Chet's Inflated Ego

      Sorry, took me a while to get it.

  • sportsnut

    The Bears are not as good as they think they are. Period.

  • bigtime sucker

    that game was too weird, yesterday in the NFL was too weird, lots of things happened that shouldn’t have. Cutlers int’s were a product of frustration/over eagerness to get something going and bad, no really bad, no EXTREMLY bad route running and postition playing. I take Troy Aikman at his word on his assessments. Everyone needs to take a breath today, and get back to work

  • Drew Dirty

    Recievers really suck almost as bad as the o-line, Culter needs a professional reciever to through to. Why isn’t Aromashado out on the field? Oh yea, Martz”s ego.

  • SPC

    From a Green Bay fan, Beating the Bears is a rivalry for cocktails. Beating the Vikings is revenge!

  • Denver Smeghead

    Well, the one good thing about the Bears losing – besides perhaps inching closer to a new coaching staff – is that the post-game show is so much better with angry Doug and OB. :)

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