Bears President Ted Phillips believes that Lovie Smith can turn it around. No really. That’s what he said to Jeff Joniak, the voice of the Bears on flagship WBBM 780 AM during a Monday radio interview. Here’s the quote if you don’t believe me:
“I know Lovie knows how to get things turned around, so does Jerry [Angelo]. From the top down, there’s disappointment but still believe we can pull it out.”
Not sure if he meant that he and Angelo believe in Lovie or that he believes in Lovie and Angelo from the context, but either way, there’s belief in the notion of a turnaround. He might be the only one in Chicago that feels that way after another embarrassing loss by his Bears, this latest debacle a 20 point home loss to the Cardinals.
He’s talking about how the Bears can “pull it out.” My, how our expectations have changed. Just 4 short weeks ago, the Bears were 3-1 and riding a 3-game winning streak. After a disappointing season opener in Green Bay, the Bears pulled out home wins against the world champion Steelers and Lions sandwiched around a road win at the always tough at home Seattle Seahawks.
Lovie Smith breaks the season up into quarters. If the 3-1 record from the first quarter gave fans reason to hope, the recent 1-3 second quarter has given many fans, myself included, reason to pull the sheet over any playoff hopes. The arrow is definitely pointing downward as the Bears wrap up the first half of the season, having lost 2 of 3 in stunning fashion and the lone win against the lowly Browns. Teddy Bear Phillips called the first half “schizophrenic.” More from sweaty Teddy:
“We’re 4-4 and are not happy about that,” he said. “I think everyone here believes we’re a better team than that, better talent than that, expected more than that. [But] our coaching staff has showed ability to overcome adversity in the past….When Lovie was hired we talked a lot about communication and when you win football games everybody is a genius and every decision you make is the right one. The key for an organization is to have people in place that help get you through the rough times.”
In my estimation, that’s being generous. Let’s look at the four Bears wins this season:
17-14 vs Pittsburgh – Jeff Reed tanked two field goals in a game that Troy Polamalu missed due to injury.
25-19 @ Seattle – A late comeback by Cutler and more missed field goals by Olindo Mare helped the Bears escape Seattle with a road win.
48-24 vs Detroit – This game was tied 21 apiece at the half. Against the Lions. Yes, those Lions. I’m not impressed either.
30-6 vs Cleveland – We all called it an ugly win (except Lovie).
Do any of those wins inspire confidence to make a big playoff push? Do you think the Bears can get even 5 more wins to finish above .500? Me neither.
You see, in order to get wins, you need something that most teams commonly refer to as a defense. The Bears don’t have one of those. They have 11 guys that are on the field when the opposing offense is on the field, but I refuse to call them a defense any more. To do that would imply that they’re actually defending something. The only defense that’s been going on in Chicago lately has been by the coaches and management trying to save their asses. Maybe Ted Phillips should take over as defensive coordinator?