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  1. #1
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    Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    I thought I'd pull a Jeff Gordon and divide up my thoughts into the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. So here we go.



    The Good
    -Steven Jackson is the real thing. He had a number of good runs tonight, and really shined in pass protection. 15 carries for 73 yards as well as four receptions. This guy can play ball.
    -The offensive line was okay. Not stellar, but a lot better than I expected considering the personnel. They allowed Bulger and Chandler to have enough time to make some plays. I think if Turley misses significant time, Grant Williams will be able to keep things safe on the right side.
    -Shaun McDonald looked very good out there. Five receptions for 78 yards, and he had a punt return for a TD brought back because of penalty. This guy looks very talented and very sharp.
    -Chandler was the most impressive quarterback of the night, with Bulger coming in a close second. Chandler showed some surprising mobility in the pocket, and Bulger looked to be pretty accurate, especially that second pass to Bruce on the first drive.
    -Overall, our defensive ends looked very strong. We had a number of guys getting into the backfield. Bryce Fisher and Tyoka Jackson look like they'll be very adequate replacements for Grant Wistrom, and even Erik Flowers got in on the action.
    -Our special teams coverage, for the most part, looks much better than it has in previous seasons, especially when you factor in McDonald's touchdown that wasn't meant to be.

    The Bad
    -Jeff Smoker started off somewhat strong, but faltered from there. A flash here or there, but overall, I thought he was disappointing. Martz seemed to share a similar opinion, because it sounded as if Smoker was getting chewed out (per typical Martz fashion I guess). He's going to have to show me a lot more if I'm to believe some of the hype I've heard about his skills.
    -Groce and Garrett looked fairly good, but Garrett missed what sounded like an easy interception, and that Anderson kid really goofed on the defensive holding when the Bears were backed up to 3rd and 27.
    -Damione Lewis and Tony Hargrove seemed invisible, from what I heard. I expected them to be around the ball more, but Hargrove only had two assisted tackles and Lewis only one solo. Nothing great.
    -Combined, the three Bear quarterbacks who played tonight completed nearly 68% of their passes tonight. I understand that Fisher and Butler were out, but we can't allow quarterbacks to be that effective, especially when they're throwing for over seven and a half yards per pass (as Grossman and Quinn were).

    The Ugly
    -Ugh, the kick return in OT. Just when you think the Rams have made some serious strides on special teams, they prove us wrong. I still think they look better as a unit overall, but this really made me scream.
    -The run defense was poor, which is disappointing. We allowed Thomas Jones to achieve 53 yards on seven carries, 7.6 yards per carry. Adrian Peterson had over five yards per carry against us. This defense needs to be able to stop the run if they're going to be successful, and we didn't see it at all tonight.
    -I don't know what's worse: the fact that we were penalized 12 times for 80 yards, or the fact that the Bears beat us despite being penalized 19 times for over 150 yards. I think we really let this one slip through our fingers and allowed the Bears to negate their 15 offensive penalities by running all over our defense.
    -Arlen Harris, Erik Flowers, and Pisa Tinoisamoa. What do these three guys have in common? They all sustained injuries! From what I've heard, nothing too serious. But it's never a good sign to see guys going down in preseason games. Oh well, at least no one pulled a Jon Jansen.

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  2. #2
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by NickSeiler
    -Jeff Smoker started off somewhat strong, but faltered from there. A flash here or there, but overall, I thought he was disappointing. Martz seemed to share a similar opinion, because it sounded as if Smoker was getting chewed out (per typical Martz fashion I guess). He's going to have to show me a lot more if I'm to believe some of the hype I've heard about his skills.
    This doesn't surprise me. Smoker is the first legit rookie quarterback in Martz's system (as far as I can remember), and even then you've got to keep in mind he's only a sixth-rounder. Rookie QBs typically don't fare well in the NFL, and in Mad Mike's offense, I can only imagine it being even more difficult.

    Thanks for the review, Nick.

  3. #3
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by Evil Disco Man
    This doesn't surprise me. Smoker is the first legit rookie quarterback in Martz's system (as far as I can remember), and even then you've got to keep in mind he's only a sixth-rounder. Rookie QBs typically don't fare well in the NFL, and in Mad Mike's offense, I can only imagine it being even more difficult.

    Thanks for the review, Nick.
    He's going to take some time, but once he gets familiar with the offense, he should turn out pretty good. There's a lot to be said for a QB knowing the offense rather than having to think about the offense. Another reason I think Bulger will show a marked improvement from last year.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by StNick
    sounded as if Smoker was getting chewed out (per typical Martz fashion I guess
    What I'd like to know is if this is an effective motivational technique? Does Smoker accept that a Martz-Chew-Out will be a source of inspiration once he undertstands the point Martz was making? Or does he dismiss it as the trappings of a comic book character? How many Smokers will have to stand up and say: "Show me your pipe dream Martz, for I am at one with your methods" before fans will understand not to disturb Men-at-Work?

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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Smoker should probably stay away from those "pipe" dreams.

  6. #6
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by adarian
    What I'd like to know is if this is an effective motivational technique?
    I've come to accept it given Martz's record with developing quarterbacks (Green, Warner, Bulger). Smoker had better realize, if he hasn't already, that it's good for him and a good sign from Martz showing he cares. If he can't handle it, bye bye.

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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Chandler was the most impressive quarterback of the night, with Bulger coming in a close second.
    Since no on else wants to play Devil's Advocate...I guess it falls to me.

    I've heard of New Math...but I've never heard of any math where 3/6 (50%) and 8/9 (88.8%) (which really was 9/9, 100%, if the ball isn't stripped from Curtis) are considered close. Am I missing something here?

    Other than that...great report!
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by Yodude
    Am I missing something here?
    Yes. You're missing the fact that I didn't say Chandler was the most accurate followed by Bulger, but rather that Chandler was the most impressive to me followed by Bulger as a close second. Unless you've got a stat over there that measures how impressed I get, then you probably don't have much of a case here.
    Last edited by Nick; -08-13-2004 at 08:07 PM.
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Semantics, semantics.

    All I can say is that next to 100%, if you find 50% to be close, you must be easily impressed. :redface:

    Interestingly enough, I do have a NickSeiler Impression Meter, but unfortunately I had it turned off yesterday.

    Seriously though, I gave you compliments on a good report...otherwise I was just trying to be amusing. I guess sometimes I only amuse myself...which I guess isn't always a bad thing.

    Peace.
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  10. #10
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    I appreciate the comments on the report, Yodude. :ramlogo:
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  11. #11
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    First of all, let me say that I missed Dez in the chat room during the game. I hope he has a chance to join us in the future.

    I don't see Martz keeping Smoker at third string, not unless he shows vast improvements over the next few weeks. I'm betting they are already looking at possible replacements. Unfortunately, Michna is even greener than Smoker. Both could use a season or so in Europe or Arena.

    I got to admit, Chandler has been great. I almost wonder whether or not we should start him instead of Bulger, but his medical past suggests that he is indeed better off as second. I feel more at ease having him in the wing.

    Overall, I agree with your assessments of the game. As for the injuries, I still say it's better these happen now than at the start of the season. They have time to heal and know exactly where they need to strengthen to keep it from happening again. It's also better that it happens while they are contributing than just bones snapping while standing around. How can you ever be prepared for spontaneous breaks? Makes you wonder what else is just waiting to happen.

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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by Yodude
    Since no on else wants to play Devil's Advocate...I guess it falls to me.

    I've heard of New Math...but I've never heard of any math where 3/6 (50%) and 8/9 (88.8%) (which really was 9/9, 100%, if the ball isn't stripped from Curtis) are considered close. Am I missing something here?

    Other than that...great report!

    Neither n=6 nor n=9 are sample sizes that one can make such a conclusion. In such a circumstance a 38% differential might be statiscally significant, but it is clinically insignificant. More data is needed to make conclusion that their performances were not "close."

    However, it is accurate to say that in the limited amount of playing time that both qb's received, Chandler had better success than Bulger. Furthermore, Bulger had Bruce and Holt to work with. Chandler did not (at least I'm pretty sure that they were sitting on the sideline with Bulger when Chandler was playing). Another variable to consider when evaluating both QB's.
    Last edited by radjohns; -08-14-2004 at 12:01 PM.

  13. #13
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Quote Originally Posted by radjohns
    Another variable to consider when evaluating both QB's.
    Also, the defensive personnel they were going up against. And Steven Jackson in the backfield with Chandler.

    There's no question in my mind that Chandler performed well. As a seasoned veteran though, I expected him to. He did show some nice mobility that surprised me. It looks like he was a very strong FA pick-up and would perform well if Bulger gets injured.
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  14. #14
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    Re: Bears @ Rams: Thoughts on Tonight's Game

    Nothing surprised me about Chandler's performance and I don't have even the slightest feeling that he should be starting. He's always been a very accurate quarterback, but he can't survive a rough day if the protection is shaky.

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