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  #21  
Old 29.10.2014, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by olig23 View Post
I think Houston looks stupid. But to be honest it's a bit unfair to blame him. Players often celebrate sacks. I don't think they are anticipating blowing the knee in doing so. You could argue the situation doesn't warrant a celebration, but if he hadn't got hurt nobody would have even noticed.

It's bad luck all around, and it is as simple as that.
Absolutely agree, however I think the score being what it was at the time is what makes the celebration a bit stupid. The injury was bad luck.
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  #22  
Old 29.10.2014, 11:15 AM
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I agree with Prof, sick of the lack of talent excuse, who picks the talent, who works with them, coaches them. I posted on here a few weeks back other teams who have picked up 'talent' that went in late rounds or were undrafted and are now starters...

Guess what, it's not on poor teams either, New England, Cheese heads, Seattle etc. Guess these guys have good talent evaluators and coaches that can 'improve' players and use talent on the team to raise standards for other to follow.

Never thought I would say this of any Bear team, but we lack heart, desire, commitment and most importantly belief. The last one I'm afraid lies heavily on the coaches.

What is the scheme on kickoffs? To me it consists of take a knee or occasionally run as fast as possible into the arms of the first defender.
In my opinion the problem is a lack of talent.

I don't see an excuse. I do see a problem.

I conceivable we should get more from those players, but we're starting from a position of weakness.

The example of Green Bay, New England and Seattle are not reasonable comparisons for Chicago. Green Bay and New England are not playoff teams if you remove their Quarterback from the field. If we are really going to measure the quality of roster building and such, lets try to imagine Green Bay and New England if Jay Cutler was the Quarterback. Green Bay would be nowhere. New England would be a borderline playoff team.

In regard to Seattle, their situation is unique. The had a great draft. Most importantly they got a bona-fide starting QB for next to nothing. They also hit on Sherman, Wagner etc. This has a trickle effect because by locking down those key spots for low money you can sign players in other positions on big contracts. We can discuss all we like about how much of the draft is luck, and how much is judgement but I firmly fall into the luck camp. You don't pass on Russell Wilson twice or Sherman four times if you see a future star. Those picks are about taking a chance. Sometimes those chances pay-off. Sometimes not. The Hawks hit the jackpot. That has a knock-on effect to other drafts. Why? Because if you have a successful team it's easier for rookies in the future to come in and play in a system that is already working. No pressure, expectation or opposition attention.

I am going to be interested to watch Seattle return to the mean as their roster evens out. The Bears roster, by contrast, is where the Hawks' will be either next year or two from now unless they have more good luck in the draft.. What I mean is that our cap hit reflects the fact that our best players are veterans and we have fluffed on some drafts. All our money is tied up in guys on their second and third contracts. The Hawks are not in that boat, at all. But they will be.

It very easy, as fans, to jump on the team. X is wrong, Y is awful, etc ,etc... Most of us have been around the NFL long enough to know that you can become a bad team very quickly in the NFL. But conversely it's equally possible to elevate a team. As much as fans do not want to hear it, luck plays a big part in success. We've had pretty poor luck in recent seasons. We've drafted pretty well on draft day, in terms of addressing the right positions, not reaching on perceived value (McClellin being the exception) but those picks have not come to fruition.Some argue that has been as issue for a while now. However, one thing is for sure, we drafted better on defence when we had the core group of talented players on the roster. Urlacher, Tillman, Briggs etc once you have guys you are building around, everything becomes easier.

The Bears' fans are not used to the cycles of the NFL because we've largely been able to avoid it's undulations. How many teams, who do not have a top tier starting QB have been consistently competitive over the past decade? Very few. Chicago, Baltimore... maybe Dallas, the rest go with the QB they have for the most part. We have defensive cornerstones and Lovie got the most out of that unit. But it had limitations. We never truly looked like a Championship team,

So we look at the league, realize it's QB and passing driven. Invest in it. Fans are happy. But it's clear that the D has taken a huge hit. Most of the picks have missed and the QB we've invested in is good, but not great. There's no point blaming a myriad of other things, it's a lack of talent (we have spent $63m on offence to $42m on defence). You either have an elite QB who can make up for the fact you cannot invest all over the team (like the Saints with Brees) or you invest in a QB and miss (to an extent) and suffer the ups and downs that come with that (see Detroit, Baltimore, Carolina, etc, etc).

The Bears don't have good safeties or linebackers - at all. They're really bad. We have good starting corners, but unproven depth. We have a above average to good D-line. The D is terrible. Yet they've only really been exposed by elite QBs. The Green Bay and New England games really shone a light on how ugly it is. But average teams are not killing us.


Moving forward, we decide if Emery is making good decisions? I think he is.

Is Trestman good enough? Jury is out, but the offence has stalled and that's on him. Granted, they were never going to carry the entire team. I would give him one more year. But the people who work with ihm are far better placed.

Is Tucker to be fired? I hope not. He has nothing to work with.

Then you go into the draft and take BPA at defensive spots and hope it works out. The Bears are one stellar draft away from being a solid playoff team. Not only that, our cap space looks strong next year despite Allen's $12.5m hit. So we can supplement by adding some guys in FA.
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  #23  
Old 29.10.2014, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by olig23 View Post
It very easy, as fans, to jump on the team. X is wrong, Y is awful, etc ,etc... Most of us have been around the NFL long enough to know that you can become a bad team very quickly in the NFL. But conversely it's equally possible to elevate a team. As much as fans do not want to hear it, luck plays a big part in success. We've had pretty poor luck in recent seasons. We've drafted pretty well on draft day, in terms of addressing the right positions, not reaching on perceived value (McClellin being the exception) but those picks have not come to fruition.Some argue that has been as issue for a while now. However, one thing is for sure, we drafted better on defence when we had the core group of talented players on the roster. Urlacher, Tillman, Briggs etc once you have guys you are building around, everything becomes easier.
I see what you are saying, but if the above were true, why would coaches be so sort after? Surely experienced coaches can improve players, otherwise back room staff who assess draft prospects, free agents, trades would be under a lot more scrutiny and media attention?
Surely game-planning/calling, motivation, determination, desire, teamwork etc. can improve your chance of winning even with so-called 'inferior' players on paper?

I've seen plenty of examples of good teams being beaten by lesser teams due to coaching adjustments, special teams play, surprise play calling etc. Its true the league moves in cycles and that is not a bad thing, keeps it competitive. But a good HC and owner move their team into a position to be competitive and try to have less ups and downs and maintain consistency but at a high level. The teams I've mentioned have been competitive for a number of years despite drafting low.
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  #24  
Old 29.10.2014, 08:13 PM
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Originally Posted by olig23 View Post
I think Houston looks stupid. But to be honest it's a bit unfair to blame him. Players often celebrate sacks. I don't think they are anticipating blowing the knee in doing so. You could argue the situation doesn't warrant a celebration, but if he hadn't got hurt nobody would have even noticed.

It's bad luck all around, and it is as simple as that.
The Chicago Bears 2014 - 'bad luck all round' ............... ? Olig really ?

Or another sympton of a far deeper malaise ?

AND I would of noticed that celebration

A bye week - thank heavens
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  #25  
Old 30.10.2014, 01:16 PM
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Originally Posted by bracewellno View Post
I see what you are saying, but if the above were true, why would coaches be so sort after? Surely experienced coaches can improve players, otherwise back room staff who assess draft prospects, free agents, trades would be under a lot more scrutiny and media attention?
Surely game-planning/calling, motivation, determination, desire, teamwork etc. can improve your chance of winning even with so-called 'inferior' players on paper?

I've seen plenty of examples of good teams being beaten by lesser teams due to coaching adjustments, special teams play, surprise play calling etc. Its true the league moves in cycles and that is not a bad thing, keeps it competitive. But a good HC and owner move their team into a position to be competitive and try to have less ups and downs and maintain consistency but at a high level. The teams I've mentioned have been competitive for a number of years despite drafting low.
You're completely right that good coaching can make a difference on a team. I am not ignoring the value of good coaching. I totally share your thoughts on that. Nothing you said above I disagree with, except perhaps the extent to which I think it makes the difference. That's the in-quantifiable part. The degree to which good coaching adds value.

My beleif on this is that there is a sort of threshold whereby you have enough talent to win. Beyond that the coaching staff can add value using the qualities you described. Below that I feel like it doesn't matter what you do because you're lacking the quality to impact the opposition sufficiently.

That sounds vague and nebulous so I'll attempt to quantify it somewhat.

Pete Carroll is a good starting point. The Seahawks were very dominant last season. This season they are not. Also, they're having lots of "team source" leaks of discontent. The scheme has not changed a huge amount. The personnel and coaches have not changed a great deal. Yet, the results are different entirely. The question is why? Is it Carroll's fault? Are his motivational qualities no longer effective? Or have the players not done their job? It's really tough to say. What I can say though is that Pete Carroll is the same Head Coach as he was last season. Which tells me that coaching qualities are very hard to pin down. It's so many small aspects. Are there things he can change? For sure. If it's motivation, he can work with them. If it's divides in the dressing room you can take steps to address them. He's shown that by letting Harvin go. He can be the difference there.The reason he can turn it around is because the talent is there and he has to find the ways to make it work as he did in the past.

By contrast lets look at Rex Ryan. Cards on the table, I think Rex Ryan is a very good coach. He's a great Defensive Co-ordinator for certain. The Jets, though, are just horrible. Truly awful. It's not just the offence either (where he carries less responsibility),the pass defence is woeful. In years past their pass D has been among the best in the NFL. That is, in my opinion, about talent. They don't have the basic talent levels to make it work. Despite the fact that Ryan is a proven defensive coach who can put the players in good situations. In fact in the areas where they do have talent they are succeeding. Their run D remains very good. I think that's because they've got the talent to execute the scheme in those areas.

Now, at this stage I would say that it's important to acknowledge that the coaches are not absolved from blame or praise. You have to credit Pete Carroll for getting that team to where they were last year. He was finding ways to motivate them and used the talent to maximum effect. I think their struggles in recent weeks though show how much the players matter way more than anything the coaches have done. Conversely, Rex Ryan has made mistakes. But he's also shown he can have success. The fall in their play has correlated with bad personnel moves and draft picks that have failed to met expectations (starting with Gholston and Wilson, now Dee Millner looks that way). There has to be a question of whether he could have got more from them. It's really tough. A player can be super talented and not have the skills or motivation or ability to adapt and it's more on the player than the coach in my view.

To play devils advocate against my own argument for a moment... some might point to the Dallas Cowboys as an example of a coach turning around a unit - with Rod Marinelli. My response to that is that Marinelli is a factor. He's got them playing better, no question. But also they've had a year in the 4-3 so the players are better adapted. They've had some good luck and judgement by adding McClain (judgement because they took him on, luck because it was a punt and they hit on him at the right time to be motivated). Henry Melton has been healthy. They've finally figured out what we could all see, Scandrick's good and Clarborne is not. They've had players whose talent is higher than their reputation (Durant for one) and so a bunch of things has come together. Marinelli deserves credit, but the examples of Ryan and Carroll illustrate to me that only to a certain extent. The Cowboys will go as far as the players take them.

Now to finally bring this back to the Bears. Can we blame the coaching? Sure. But not in my opinion to the extent we are. It's not an either or situation. I think both Trestman and Tucker carry some blame for the season. Very few people are blameless. The issue I see is that we scapegoat coaches "Tucker needs to go!" "Trestman needs to go back to the CFL!" but we don't use the same judgement with players. That's so often the case in sports. But it's not really fair.

In Trestman's case, and as I mentioned before, I am on the fence. I see he did very well last year with a new offensive line and McCown as starter last season. I DO think Trestman was a big factor in that. Why? Because we know McCown and he's shown his talent baseline on many teams. Trestman gave him optimum opportunity to succeed. Granted, the talent around him was impressive and that is a big, big factor too. But if we are going to blame coaches for failings we have to recognize value added. The reason I am on he fence is that we've been middle of the road this year. It's easy to forget that we're still an above average offence. It's just we're not elite. I think Trestman plays a big part in that. Why? Because the talent is there. He's got the players he needs and the scheme is established. Yet we've taken a step back. The question is whether it balances out. As in the case of Carroll and Ryan, there are ups and downs.

I am leaning towards giving Trestman more time. There are a few reasons why. Firstly, two years isn't that much, we've seen some good and some bad. Also, the defence is so bad, at times, that the offence starts in a position to fail (i.e playing from behind and opponents only playing the pass). The other reason, and this is a big one, is that consistency of system breeds success. Especially for QBs. Eli Manning was horrid when his OC kept changing. His best years came with continuity. I have enough belief in Trestman's offence that if we keep going it will improve. Moreover, a new coach will possibly make things worse (or better) it's an unknown quantity. But the odds favour the first year being "transitional" and for guys like Cutler, Forte, Marshall - their prime is now, lets not waste it learning new schemes all the time. It's a recipe for poor play.

With Tucker, I have no desire to fire him. I simply think we lack quality players. Bostic is awful. D.J Williams was always overrated in my view, high tackle numbers, many of them 6 yards past the LOS. Briggs has lost a step. McClellin is a bust. Allen is past his prime, but solid, The safeties are beyond awful. We're one cornerback injury away from being horrible in the slot. It's pretty terrible. Tucker has made mistakes. He could be more creative with his play calls, but I don't think we have the players to create a pass rush strong enough to protect our failings in the secondary.

Therefore, while coaches can make all the difference they get too much attention ofr the impact. Talent is first and foremost the key thing. Then the coach adds 10-15% to that while keeping momentum and preparation etc. But if you cannot do the basics properly the coach is so limited. You can call the right play and have everyone fired up, but if your guy can't get by his blocker or run with the receiver, you're in deep trouble.

Having said that, if the Bears spiral out of control. That is the coaches fault and they both need to go. If only to show the players failure won't be tolerated. But let's cross that bridge when/if we get there.


Wow... long post haha... again.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Professor1228 View Post
The Chicago Bears 2014 - 'bad luck all round' ............... ? Olig really ?

Or another sympton of a far deeper malaise ?

AND I would of noticed that celebration

A bye week - thank heavens
I don't think bad luck all round for the way the season has turned out. There are many, many variables and failures that contribute to the poor performances we have had.

In the specific case of Houston's injury, that was bad luck. It happened in a situation that made Houston look very stupid. But celebrating individual accomplishments, even when your team is losing heavily is a league wide occurrence. If you get injured doing it, everyone notices and it highlights the stupidity of it. But lets not get the pitchforks out. We could sign many, many other players who would have behaved the exact same way. It's just as fans we don't think it's the right way to behave.

I separate the two.

He celebrated a sack in a game we were getting soundly beaten in. - That's just stupid, but I don't think a huge issue. Just a "calm down son" kind of moment.

He got injured while celebrating - Sheer bad luck. Players celebrate and we're not going to ban celebrations for fear of injury. It's just one of those things.

Last edited by olig23; 30.10.2014 at 01:28 PM.
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  #26  
Old 30.10.2014, 05:39 PM
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Wow, I'm gonna need some time to get through that!! I get a little defensive (I wish Chicago would!) when people play down coaching. I coached in Germany a good few years back in and some of the guys we got there were really talented but so raw in terms of understanding schemes, zones, technique and most importantly attitude/desire. Apart from the big high schools and colleges in the states, most just let them play where they want and allow them to pretty much play on the fly, they have basic play books and pretty much run man to man. So obviously I think there is a lot to coaching and even if you are a good coach you might get some schemes or plays wrong or underestimate/overestimate a player here or there...
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  #27  
Old 31.10.2014, 11:34 AM
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Wow, I'm gonna need some time to get through that!! I get a little defensive (I wish Chicago would!) when people play down coaching. I coached in Germany a good few years back in and some of the guys we got there were really talented but so raw in terms of understanding schemes, zones, technique and most importantly attitude/desire. Apart from the big high schools and colleges in the states, most just let them play where they want and allow them to pretty much play on the fly, they have basic play books and pretty much run man to man. So obviously I think there is a lot to coaching and even if you are a good coach you might get some schemes or plays wrong or underestimate/overestimate a player here or there...
Haha, I do have a tendency to go on a bit! These posts always start small and then get away from me!

And in fairness I think we both would agree that it's coaching that can elevate a decent team from the middle of the pack to the top. It's certainly been the case for teams in the NFL and is a much bigger influence at the collegiate level.

However, I do think that the standard in the NFL is so high that it's very hard to succeed if you don't have established talent. The other teams are just so often operating at a high level and so lack of quality gets found out. Also, the players themselves are more able to correct and adjust in ways that collegiate players cannot. A good coach can tell college players things they would never be able to spot themselves and instruct adjustments and such, making the team significantly better. I've just always felt that the exceptional talents at the NFL level make sure a big impact in individual match-ups that it's hard to overcome as many deficiencies as the Bears have even with the best coaching.
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  #28  
Old 31.10.2014, 07:17 PM
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An interesting set of exchanges - not bothered about the length of posts when sound things are said. I've learnt something, ta.

So, if we win all of our remaining games, where does it leave us? (I know we are unlikely to and thus the season is done but as a gross optimist, if we did win them all...?).
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  #29  
Old 31.10.2014, 08:03 PM
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So, if we win all of our remaining games, where does it leave us? (I know we are unlikely to and thus the season is done but as a gross optimist, if we did win them all...?).
11-5 with a divisional record of 5-1 so probably in contention for the division title but at worst a wildcard I would have thought (NFL.com thinks it possibly another 10-6 team misses the post-season again). Mathematically we are not out of it by a long way. However this is as bad a Chicago team as we've seen in a while so it would take a stunning second half season turnaround to change things.

And whilst I'd love to believe we're only one draft away from threatening the post season I can't help but think Billick probably sums up the situation Trestman find himself in (and arguably the remainder of his contract) quite nicely:

'Trestman has to show he has a plan to turn this around, all the while knowing he might not have the QB to do it'

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap300...-uphill-battle
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  #30  
Old 31.10.2014, 10:47 PM
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And in fairness I think we both would agree that it's coaching that can elevate a decent team from the middle of the pack to the top. It's certainly been the case for teams in the NFL and is a much bigger influence at the collegiate level.
I guess we are in general agreement, just differ a little about talent. I think you're right about a ceiling for a player and you can only coach to their ability. However that's what good coaches and GM's do, they have schemes in place and select players that fit into those schemes, best case scenario they unearth a superstar, worst case they have a serviceable player or reliable backup.

There is no question that the bears have drafted badly (apart from some notable exceptions), they have also made some shocking decisions on pickups and letting people go (in my opinion). The team lack an identity and a leader on the field. Not having a pattern of play and/or focus does not help either and we look soooo predictable on both sides of the ball! (its quite shocking for me as a former lower league coach to see how predictable we are)

I think our best performance so far was the Atlanta game (I know they aren't great either) but it was the most unpredictable game we played, pressure on the QB, blitzes for Christ sake etc. Was that because we were down to our backups and Tucker had to play that way? I would have, to prevent a team focusing on our weak points, if you move people/schemes around, how do they know where to attack! It worked and the very next game we reverted back to vanilla, for that reason alone tucker should go.
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