Bernstein: Brutal Night For Bears, Viewers

By Dan Bernstein —
CBSChicago.com senior columnist

(CBS) This was the football equivalent of an afternoon in line at the DMV, any Wes Anderson movie, the last class period of the day with a substitute droning about equilateral angles or a particularly abrasive dental cleaning.

At least it’s over.

Everything sucked about this if you are a Bears fan, is the point. They lost to the Packers, 35-14, at Lambeau Field on Thursday night, in the rain and under the threat of lightning, as if some higher power tried to do all it possibly could to tell everyone to just stop. It would have been best for all if at 14-0 at the end of the first quarter, instead of sending us from studio to studio of blather and bilge and purported experts telling us that Mike Glennon is adequate at quarterbacking and our timelines full of forced Jason Heyward jokes, that the league just called it and sent us on our way to better things, like plunging a clogged toilet or figuring out which detector is beeping.

“STAY IN BOUNDS!” was the mantra for those of us cursed to consume.

But there’s a flag on the play, and let’s go to Tracy Wolfson for another injury update on the guy who just went down clutching his knee or his ribs. No, not that guy, the other guy. The team says he’s questionable to return with a sheared brain stem and an exploded left ventricle.

Bears receiver Josh Bellamy was hit so hard in the head he couldn’t get off the field without an escort trying to tell him where and who he was, and he was then “cleared” to return to the game in time to line up improperly and necessitate a timeout. Total coincidence, probably, for the same team that admitted a brain-injured linebacker missed a subsequent assignment in an earlier loss this season.

Bears linebacker Danny Trevathan tried to murder Packers receiver Davante Adams in the second half, inflicting the kind of premeditated helmet-to-helmet hit that could have Vontaze Burfict decrying man’s inhumanity to man. That the specific moment shocked this game from its torpid mire was notable, a signature mark of punctuation in something to which we were run-on sentenced.

Enough, enough, enough of Glennon, for any reason you want. He was anointed as starter to be an ostensible caretaker of the ball for a possibly competitive team trying to play close games, and he has turned out to be what he always has been – slow to see what’s happening in front of him and quick to make mistakes. He’s the opposite of what he was purported to be and is bench-able entirely independently of the presence of Mitch Trubisky or anyone. He should be out because he’s bad.

As should Bears coach John Fox, and the fact that he will be after this year is no comfort for anyone at the moment.

The players on both teams linked arms before the game, proving that the bland and stupid nationalism endemic to the NFL is defeating and deflating the heartfelt protest of institutionalized racism and discriminatory law-enforcement practices. Who needs to confront human injustice when some country singer is gargling the anthem and everyone can stand for some nebulous idea of unity about whatever?

We got to watch streaks of electricity flickering in the skies around the stadium, wishing for a different kind of energy to make all of it better.

Dan Bernstein is a co-host of 670 The Score’s “Bernstein and Goff Show” in afternoon drive. You can follow him on Twitter: @dan_bernstein and read more of his columns here.

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