Last season, SI’s Peter King made headlines when he picked the Bears to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl in his preseason playoff predictions. This year, he goes the other way – BIG TIME – and ranks the Bears as the 25th best team in the NFL.
Here’s what he has to say about the Beloved in his blurb that accompanies the ranking:
25. Chicago. The Mike Martz-Jay Cutler marriage could work, or it could explode. The defense will be solid, assuming Julius Peppers comes to play, but he can’t solve everything on a unit that allowed 375 points last year.
To make matters worse, he ranks the Detroit Lions – yes those Detroit Lions – 24th, one spot ahead of the Bears. Are you ready for the cherry on top? His #1 team? The Green Bay Fucking Packers! Arghh!!!
If King’s prognostication skills this season compare at all to last season, we should start printing Super Bowl tickets. Yes, the Martz-Cutler marriage could be volatile, but no matter where he’s gone, Martz has improved the offense.
The bigger question surrounding the Bears lies with the defense. True, Peppers can’t do it al0ne. That’s why the return of Chris Harris and healthy linebackers Urlacher and Tinoisamoa should have a positive impact.
I’ll say this, CBS Sports had the Bears ranked 24th in their Preseason Power Rankings, so if nothing else, there’s some consistency out there from the national perspective.
I’ve told anyone who will listen that the Lions are a team on the come this season. They’ve had a solid offseason both in Free Agency and in the Draft. Stafford showed flashes of what you want to see out of a quarterback last season, so we can’t take the two dates against the Lions for granted.
That said, if the Bears have really fallen behind the Lions, have we reached Football Armageddon here in Chicago? We won’t have to wait long to see how the teams compare. The Lions visit Soldier Field in the 2010 season opener on September 12th.