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soulman

We Really Need To Pin This One 'Til January

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2 minutes ago, dll2000 said:

I think thing outsiders don't get is most Bears fans will be first to tell you their team is mediocre or needs a lot of things to go right for this or that to happen.

We aren't cheerleaders predicting Super Bowl or deep playoff run every year.  We find something postive to focus on most offseasons, but there is still a backbone  of realism on final outcomes of season. 

We have taken a deep look at the 2019 Bears and see a very good team on paper. 

It's NFL and things can go badly wrong as they have for many other talented teams with high expectations, but those would all be unpredictable happenstance and bad luck. There is no logical reason Bears shouldn't be a very good team this year. 

Heck listen to Cubs fans.  Team has been around first place in division all year, but if you listen to fans and radio they are worst team in baseball this year.

They (we) know this (Cubs) are a flawed team. Nobody is sugar coating it. 

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I think I've recently figured out how sports writers can be most effective in riling up a fanbase. It's not to say the team is bad-lets face it there are probably hundreds of tweets every minute calling pretty much every team bad-it's to say they're bad and then give a reason that doesn't fit the point of view of an informed but realistic fan. Think about how much time people spend getting angry every time "Trubisky can't throw left" comes up.

 

You're probably going to get the most clicks and engagement if you say something that touches on the fanbase's anxiety "The Bears will not be good this year" but then for a reason that's nonsensical "...because the secondary is going to be sub-average"

 

It's been a busy and challenging year for me, and I'm more or less coming exclusively here to get Bears and NFL info.  I feel like we can get a rational discussion on areas for concern, backed with tape impressions and statistics.  Even the good people on twitter seem obliged to get into pointless circular arguments about nonsense and baiting headlines.

 

For my point of view I don't think the Bears will win 12+ games again, but will make the playoffs. I think the rest of the division will be a little crisper, and the Bears will get a few unluckly bounces along the way.  I feel like Trubisky will be improved but will still make some bonehead plays. The defense is going to be top 5, and will have some bonkers highlights but probably lose a game every now and then when the opposing offense is able to chain together a couple huge plays.  Any rational thought's like these will also go out the window the first time the ball gets kicked in anger. 

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5 minutes ago, RunningVaccs said:

I think I've recently figured out how sports writers can be most effective in riling up a fanbase. It's not to say the team is bad-lets face it there are probably hundreds of tweets every minute calling pretty much every team bad-it's to say they're bad and then give a reason that doesn't fit the point of view of an informed but realistic fan. Think about how much time people spend getting angry every time "Trubisky can't throw left" comes up.

 

You're probably going to get the most clicks and engagement if you say something that touches on the fanbase's anxiety "The Bears will not be good this year" but then for a reason that's nonsensical "...because the secondary is going to be sub-average"

 

It's been a busy and challenging year for me, and I'm more or less coming exclusively here to get Bears and NFL info.  I feel like we can get a rational discussion on areas for concern, backed with tape impressions and statistics.  Even the good people on twitter seem obliged to get into pointless circular arguments about nonsense and baiting headlines.

 

For my point of view I don't think the Bears will win 12+ games again, but will make the playoffs. I think the rest of the division will be a little crisper, and the Bears will get a few unluckly bounces along the way.  I feel like Trubisky will be improved but will still make some bonehead plays. The defense is going to be top 5, and will have some bonkers highlights but probably lose a game every now and then when the opposing offense is able to chain together a couple huge plays.  Any rational thought's like these will also go out the window the first time the ball gets kicked in anger. 

The way to Twitter followers is saying extreme things not rational thoughts.  It applies to other media formats as well. 

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1 hour ago, soulman said:

That's all I've got brother.

Appreciate the response. All valid arguments. But we see every year a turnover in playoff teams. And it's typically the ones without the QB that don't make it back. 

And it's fair to be optimistic with the team this time of year. But every year is different. If you point out all the reasons the Bears should be better you also have to apply that to teams in the Division like the Packers who have a top tier QB and the Vikings who are a year removed from being right where the Bears are today. A great defense and offense with question marks at QB. 

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1 hour ago, dll2000 said:

I think thing outsiders don't get is most Bears fans will be first to tell you their team is mediocre or needs a lot of things to go right for this or that to happen.

We aren't cheerleaders predicting Super Bowl or deep playoff run every year.  We find something postive to focus on most offseasons, but there is still a backbone  of realism on final outcomes of season. 

We have taken a deep look at the 2019 Bears and see a very good team on paper. 

It's NFL and things can go badly wrong as they have for many other talented teams with high expectations, but those would all be unpredictable happenstance and bad luck. There is no logical reason Bears shouldn't be a very good team this year. 

This my position as well.  All logic points to another year not all that dissimilar from 2018.

Major long term injuries can't be predicted or even adequately projected as to quantifying what that might mean to a final W/L record so they really aren't a major component of an evaluation process.  To count them is no less speculative then it is to predict 14 wins or even 16 wins.  All we know at the moment is all of the starters and most of their primary backups will begin the season 100% intact.

Also projecting the regression of any one player or unit right now is also very speculative.  Nothing supports that so far.

Bears fans are if anything pragmatic and more than willing to call crap.....crap.  It only took one year to understand Phil Emery and Marc Trestman were not a solution as far as rebuilding a winner and neither was John Fox.  Of course living in Denver I actually predicted that outcome.  Many times we're even tougher on our players and coaches than the media or public in general.  We expect more from them.

So, if we're relatively pleased with the team and it's prospects it's typically because we feel we're on solid footing and not because we lack humility.  This team has all the makings of the same teams who dominated in the '80s and also the mid '00s Super Bowl team under Lovie Smith but with a far better offense and a far better QB.  So we're logically optimistic and we should be.

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1 hour ago, dll2000 said:

There is no logical reason Bears shouldn't be a very good team this year. 

First off... respect the avatar. Underrated Bill Murray role and comedy.

Logically, teams who generate a lot of turnovers, regress the following year. The Bears cannot continue to thrive on the absurd amount of takeaways. DVOA rating shows that teams that finish 1 in defense, drop to 9th the following year.  So even a slight regression to the defense, needs counterbalanced by the offense. And that is the question mark. 

You all get fiery over the Jags comparison, but they went from 1 to 5 last year in defense and the offense fell apart around similar circumstance in QBs. 

And you can downplay the change in DC, but it's a pretty major change in scheme as well. There is a reason guys like Mcvey and Shannahan said recently Fangio's defense is the hardest to game plan for. His zone looks are hard to decipher and create a lot of confusion for QBs. You're now moving to Pagano's man scheme. Easier to read for QBs under pressure. Turnovers will decrease. And you have to factor in personnel going from a zone to a man scheme in the secondary. Can they line up man without safety help and be as successful?

Finally, you guys want to down play the schedule, but this team will see a lot better class of QB this season compared to last. 

So there is a lot of logical reason to why they could regress.

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13 minutes ago, soulman said:

This my position as well.  All logic points to another year not all that dissimilar from 2018.

Major long term injuries can't be predicted or even adequately projected as to quantifying what that might mean to a final W/L record so they really aren't a major component of an evaluation process.  To count them is no less speculative then it is to predict 14 wins or even 16 wins.  All we know at the moment is all of the starters and most of their primary backups will begin the season 100% intact.

Also projecting the regression of any one player or unit right now is also very speculative.  Nothing supports that so far.

Bears fans are if anything pragmatic and more than willing to call crap.....crap.  It only took one year to understand Phil Emery and Marc Trestman were not a solution as far as rebuilding a winner and neither was John Fox.  Of course living in Denver I actually predicted that outcome.  Many times we're even tougher on our players and coaches than the media or public in general.  We expect more from them.

So, if we're relatively pleased with the team and it's prospects it's typically because we feel we're on solid footing and not because we lack humility.  This team has all the makings of the same teams who dominated in the '80s and also the mid '00s Super Bowl team under Lovie Smith but with a far better offense and a far better QB.  So we're logically optimistic and we should be.

That's the thing.  Most of media and fans predicting massive Bears regression are basically reasoning Fangio and bad luck.

Hard to say Mitch is going to be worse than last year.  

It's weak sauce.  (I am capable of making 'weak sauce' a thing unlike 'fetch').

 

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1 minute ago, big_palooka said:

First off... respect the avatar. Underrated Bill Murray role and comedy.

Thank you.

Logically, teams who generate a lot of turnovers, regress the following year.

That's not logic.  

The Bears cannot continue to thrive on the absurd amount of takeaways.

Why not?  Is Mack going to suddenly suck in 2019?  Jackson?  Hicks?  Fuller?  Smith?  I would argue that many of those guys may be even better - especially young Roquan.  

DVOA rating shows that teams that finish 1 in defense, drop to 9th the following year. 

You have to look at every team that happened to and look to reasons for it.  It isn't just because 'reasons'.  

So even a slight regression to the defense, needs counterbalanced by the offense. And that is the question mark. 

You haven't shown a valid reason for defense to regress other than loss of DC and statistics which are nearly always interpreted to back already established conclusions.  Also, like saying Tiger won't win Masters (in his prime).  Yeah he probably won't because its hard, but doesn't mean he won't or doesn't have the best chance.

You all get fiery over the Jags comparison, but they went from 1 to 5 last year in defense and the offense fell apart around similar circumstance in QBs. 

On what are you basing the idea that Mitch is going to fall apart?

And you can downplay the change in DC, but it's a pretty major change in scheme as well. There is a reason guys like Mcvey and Shannahan said recently Fangio's defense is the hardest to game plan for. His zone looks are hard to decipher and create a lot of confusion for QBs. You're now moving to Pagano's man scheme. Easier to read for QBs under pressure. Turnovers will decrease. And you have to factor in personnel going from a zone to a man scheme in the secondary. Can they line up man without safety help and be as successful?

Pagano can play zone or man and Fangio played man as well.  It isn't easy for QBs to succeed under pressure.  It is opposite.  Guys like Floyd and Smith are made for blitzing and Fangio under utilized that talent.

Finally, you guys want to down play the schedule, but this team will see a lot better class of QB this season compared to last. 

I agree with you here.  This is only valid agrument IMO for a worse season.  But like others have pointed out, we played Seattle, Philly (twice including playoffs), NE and Rams last year.  Tampa Bay was riding real high when they came into town.  A lot of otherwise good teams also took a turn for worse AFTER playing us.  Our 2018 schedule wasn't cake.  

So there is a lot of logical reason to why they could regress.

There are a few.  On balance there are many more logical reasons why they won't.

 

 

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7 minutes ago, big_palooka said:

Appreciate the response. All valid arguments. But we see every year a turnover in playoff teams. And it's typically the ones without the QB that don't make it back. 

And it's fair to be optimistic with the team this time of year. But every year is different. If you point out all the reasons the Bears should be better you also have to apply that to teams in the Division like the Packers who have a top tier QB and the Vikings who are a year removed from being right where the Bears are today. A great defense and offense with question marks at QB. 

More often than not that's due to an injury to the #1 as opposed to his regression.  Bortles and JAX were more of an exception than the rule.  The more obvious choices would be GB without Rodgers in 2017 and Carolina any year Cam Newton can't play.

But since the topic is QBs let's examine the NFCN.

Matthew Stafford has a cannon for an arm but has never been a consistent winner.  His W/L record is worse than .500 and he's 0-3 when Detroit even made the playoffs.  If any NFCN QB might be looked at as having never reached his potential it's Stafford.

In his 6 seasons in DC Kurt Cousins also had a worse record than .500 and his W/L record against winning teams is something like 4-25  yet the NFL is so lacking in really good QBs Minny guaranteed him $84 mil over 3 years to prove he's better than that.  So far he's 8-7-1.

Then we have a known future HOF'er whose in his mid 30s and with injuries taking there toll the last two years it's not impossible to see some decline in his play.  I'm not necessarily predicting that but even last year his mobility was lessened and that is a huge part of his game.  Still, he knows how to win games and IMHO that's not likely to change so GB could definitely win more often in 2019.

Then we have Mitch who actually does have a winning record despite having to serve out his rookie year under John Fox and Dowell Loggains with a QBR as good as Cousins and better than Stafford in only his first year in his offense.  So there's plenty of room to improve right?  What annoys me though is how his critics chose to ignore a tremendous late game drive against Philly in the playoff game to even get "Double Doink" into his range only to see him fail.  That we a big time pro drive under maximum pressure.

 

So Aaron Rodgers excluded (for now) I can't logically see where we're any worse off at QB than two other NFCN opponents and I would love to debate anyone over whether or not our offensive talent overall ranks as low as SI ranks it.  We won 12 games with Jordan Howard as the #1 RB and while Howard is a dependable big back he's limited as far as his skill set.

Few if any could look at David Montgomery's college tapes and even the minimal amount of preseason tape on him and not see a far better RB.  Mike Davis is more the equivalent of Howard but a much better receiver and no one else in the NFCN or possibly in the NFL period has a kid like Tarik Cohen as a multi-pupose weapon.  These guys alone make the offense better this year.

I'll stop here because ranking the receivers as low as they did also seems absurd.  When the Bears has AJ and Marshall they were ranked as a top three duo.  I'm gonna say now that without a doubt this bunch is better and deeper than any we've ever had since I've been alive and that goes back some.  And most are quite young with three still playing under rookie deals.  Even ARob is only 25.

So if Mitch goes down for the count yeah, we'd be in a heap of trouble with no Nick Foles to save the day but if this team stays fairly healthy I don't see them falling back in the NFCN.  Despite the SI take on it the Bears are the best team in the NFCN.

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28 minutes ago, dll2000 said:

 

Glad you responded......saves me some time.

I see more opinions than absolute unvarnished facts.

Any of that could happen just as easily as the 2019 defense could rise to the level of the '85 Bears and absolutely dominate the NFL.

All I'm gonna say is on paper this is one strong f'ing team both on the field and in the meeting rooms with their coaches.  How it's all gonna play out we don't yet know so they'll need to go out and prove they're just as good or better on the field as they are on paper.

I believe they can do that.

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11 hours ago, big_palooka said:

I'm not. I'm saying they are great, but they won't match the ridiculous high bar set as year for a scoring defense. And the offense (Trubisky) won't have it as easy this year as a result. 

It's curious as to why even some football media types assume that the Bears offense will be, basically, the same this year--quality-wise. Others have explained why this is nonsense. And they all have valid points. Even if the defense regressed to near middle-of-the-league (which they won't), the Bears could still conceivably win 12 games. 

9 hours ago, RunningVaccs said:

I think I've recently figured out how sports writers can be most effective in riling up a fanbase. It's not to say the team is bad-lets face it there are probably hundreds of tweets every minute calling pretty much every team bad-it's to say they're bad and then give a reason that doesn't fit the point of view of an informed but realistic fan. Think about how much time people spend getting angry every time "Trubisky can't throw left" comes up.

 

You're probably going to get the most clicks and engagement if you say something that touches on the fanbase's anxiety "The Bears will not be good this year" but then for a reason that's nonsensical "...because the secondary is going to be sub-average"

 

It's been a busy and challenging year for me, and I'm more or less coming exclusively here to get Bears and NFL info.  I feel like we can get a rational discussion on areas for concern, backed with tape impressions and statistics.  Even the good people on twitter seem obliged to get into pointless circular arguments about nonsense and baiting headlines.

 

For my point of view I don't think the Bears will win 12+ games again, but will make the playoffs. I think the rest of the division will be a little crisper, and the Bears will get a few unluckly bounces along the way.  I feel like Trubisky will be improved but will still make some bonehead plays. The defense is going to be top 5, and will have some bonkers highlights but probably lose a game every now and then when the opposing offense is able to chain together a couple huge plays.  Any rational thought's like these will also go out the window the first time the ball gets kicked in anger. 

There are still too many Trubisky haters in the media to get a good feel as to the overall nature of those dismissing the Bears. However, I do think that among the less...substantial media folks, that the Bears simply aren't a good enough story YET for them to go the route of what they see as carrying water for the team. Which is ridiculously stupid, but I think it's what we're seeing.

As to what you posted at the end there, I think the Bears may well win more than 12. Everything lines up for a big year. 

8 hours ago, big_palooka said:

And you can downplay the change in DC, but it's a pretty major change in scheme as well. There is a reason guys like Mcvey and Shannahan said recently Fangio's defense is the hardest to game plan for. His zone looks are hard to decipher and create a lot of confusion for QBs. You're now moving to Pagano's man scheme. Easier to read for QBs under pressure. Turnovers will decrease. And you have to factor in personnel going from a zone to a man scheme in the secondary. Can they line up man without safety help and be as successful?

You're simplifying Pagano's scheme a great deal. And, probably neglecting to realize he isn't a head coach anymore. Also--many of us here have blamed losses last year (and near losses) on Fangio being too conservative...which Pagano won't be doing. It's unlikely this will all be a major problem for the Bears. 

As a sidenote--I just logged in and I'm nearly out of "likes"! :) Stop making so much sense fellas! 

Edited by Heinz D.
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1 hour ago, Heinz D. said:

It's curious as to why even some football media types assume that the Bears offense will be, basically, the same this year--quality-wise. Others have explained why this is nonsense. And they all have valid points. Even if the defense regressed to near middle-of-the-league (which they won't), the Bears could still conceivably win 12 games. 

Trubisky is still an unknown. If he doesn't progress, the likely don't improve. And he certainly cannot carry an offense if the defense was to slip even back to top 8-9 range. 

1 hour ago, Heinz D. said:

You're simplifying Pagano's scheme a great deal.

Maybe, but really I don't care who the DC is, a team cannot and will not sustain the same number of turnovers where they outpaced the league by a large margin.

Most every fans argument in here is they usual, we were X last year and improved Y this year, so everything points up for the team... except that doesn't always happen. Every team thinks they've improved every offseason. But the games have to be played and there are red flags for Chicago that fans want to ignore and I get that as a sports fan. 

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13 minutes ago, big_palooka said:

Trubisky is still an unknown. If he doesn't progress, the likely don't improve. And he certainly cannot carry an offense if the defense was to slip even back to top 8-9 range. 

You can ignore my point, or points depending on how you (or whoever) digests them--and instead focus entirely on Trubisky.

That doesn't make it a cogent argument, though. 

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11 hours ago, big_palooka said:

First off... respect the avatar. Underrated Bill Murray role and comedy.

Logically, teams who generate a lot of turnovers, regress the following year. The Bears cannot continue to thrive on the absurd amount of takeaways. DVOA rating shows that teams that finish 1 in defense, drop to 9th the following year.  So even a slight regression to the defense, needs counterbalanced by the offense. And that is the question mark. 

You all get fiery over the Jags comparison, but they went from 1 to 5 last year in defense and the offense fell apart around similar circumstance in QBs. 

And you can downplay the change in DC, but it's a pretty major change in scheme as well. There is a reason guys like Mcvey and Shannahan said recently Fangio's defense is the hardest to game plan for. His zone looks are hard to decipher and create a lot of confusion for QBs. You're now moving to Pagano's man scheme. Easier to read for QBs under pressure. Turnovers will decrease. And you have to factor in personnel going from a zone to a man scheme in the secondary. Can they line up man without safety help and be as successful?

Finally, you guys want to down play the schedule, but this team will see a lot better class of QB this season compared to last. 

So there is a lot of logical reason to why they could regress.

1)defensive DVOA, you have to deep dive as to why the regression from #1, but you are correct.that historically that has happened, and likely will again this year, bc when you are #1 you can only go down.  I will correct you in the defense living off of turnovers.  That's simply not true, yes they lead the league in TOs, they also lead the league in 3 and outs forced.  They were #1 in points allowed and #3 in yards allowed.  They were 3rd in sacks.  They dominated up front and on the back end.  Is the turnover # sustainable? Probably not, but truthfully they didnt need the turnovers to be a great defense, they took the ball away BECAUSE they were a great defense.  They were a great defense because top to bottom, they were the best defensive roster in the league and #2 really wasnt close.  #2 is probably closer this year, but they are still the best defensive roster in the league.  Even with regression, they will probably be top 5 in DVOA at the end of the year.

I'm so glad you brought up the Jags, and were honest enough to try to compare Tru and Bortles.  Let's take a look at that:

2017 Bortles: 60.2% comp

2018 Mitch: 66.7% comp

2017 Bortles 21 TD 4%

2018 Mitch 24 TD 5.5

2017 Bortles 11 INT 2.5%

2018 Mitch 12 INT 2.8%

2017 Bortles 84.7 passer rating

2018 Mitch 95.4 passer rating

2017 Bortles 59.2 QBR

2018 Mitch 74.2 QBR (3rd in the NFL)

As you can see the comparisons arent close.  And what's missing from this is that Bortles was I. His 4th year and Mitch was in his 2nd.  We havent even touched on their first playoff appearances where Bortles was an absolute joke completing 52% for 87 yards and a 72 passer rating.  Against Mitch's 60% for 303 yards and and an 89 rating. 

But do you want to know the real funny thing?  Bortles didnt really regress in 2018 very much, his comp% was the same, his TD% dipped from 4 to 3.5, his INT% went up 2.8, his passer rating barely dropped to 79.  So what really happened in JAX?  That's a pretty easy answer really, Leonard Fournette went from 1000 yards to 400 yards.  He went from 13 games to 8.  10 TDs to 6 TDs.  Bortles WRs left or regresses dramatically.  The defense actually remained top 5, but the offense lost its luster bc of personnel around the QB.

In 2019 the only player missing from the offense that contributed in 2018 will be Jordan Howard.  And he is being replaced by 2 RBs, one of which may have been the best back in college football last year.  Is it possible the run game regresses, sure.  But I'd say its doubtful.

 

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1 hour ago, big_palooka said:

Trubisky is still an unknown. If he doesn't progress, the likely don't improve. And he certainly cannot carry an offense if the defense was to slip even back to top 8-9 range. 

Maybe, but really I don't care who the DC is, a team cannot and will not sustain the same number of turnovers where they outpaced the league by a large margin.

Most every fans argument in here is they usual, we were X last year and improved Y this year, so everything points up for the team... except that doesn't always happen. Every team thinks they've improved every offseason. But the games have to be played and there are red flags for Chicago that fans want to ignore and I get that as a sports fan. 

What red flags?  Please dont say turnovers again, bc while turnovers arent sustainable, everything else about the defense certainly is.

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