By Dan Durkin-
(CBS) Splitting $6 billion dollars — as the NFL’s 32 franchises did this past January — of revenue doesn’t happen unless you’re selling a solid product. Undoubtedly, there are spectacular displays of athleticism on the field every time the ball is kicked off, but the surrounding narrative off the field is just as appealing.
Each week builds a new level of anticipation, intrigue and drama. There’s certainly been plenty of the latter in Chicago this week.
Bears receiver Brandon Marshall made headlines last Sunday not for his play on the field, but rather his reaction to the game afterward. For five days, the team has been dealing with the ripple effect, which won’t completely dissipate until Sunday at noon in Foxboro when the ball is kicked off against the Patriots.
Rather than letting those emotions go, Marshall is holding onto them as a motivating force.
“It’s fuel,” Marshall said. “You’ve got to take that frustration and use it as fuel. I’m going to be frustrated until we run a few (wins together) in a row. So you just have to take it and use it as fuel. That’s the good thing about playing in professional sports. You can let the negative stuff tear you down or you can take it and build off of it and use it as fuel. And I’ll be determined to get the job done.”
It’s a fitting word choice for someone who refers to himself as “Machine” Marshall.
The Bears will need all of their weapons this Sunday to get the job done against the Patriots in what amounts to a must-win game at the midpoint of the season.
Marshall is on pace for his lowest totals in receptions and yardage since his rookie season. This weekend he will likely draw All-Pro cornerback Darrelle Revis in coverage, who has allowed 19 receptions on 31 targets this year, per Pro Football Focus.
Dan Durkin covers the Bears for CBSChicago.com and is a frequent contributor to 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter at @djdurkin.