The stage is set for an instant classic on Sunday as the Chicago Bears host the New England Patriots. CBS knew what they were doing when they moved this game to the prime 3:15 time slot. You’ve got two first place teams matched up in a December clash that some think could be (why not?) a Super Bowl preview.
The story lines abound. You’ve got the Mad Scientist Mike Martz vs the Hoodie Bill Belichick, the middle linebacker Brian Urlacher vs the pretty boy quarterback Tom Brady. Chicago vs Boston. Midwest vs East Coast. How about a re-match of the Super Bowl XX teams a mere 25 years after the Super Bowl Shufflin’ Bears captured their first Super Bowl title?
You can’t have an instant classic without great teams and some great stories, but the cherry on top will be the weather. Sunday’s forecast? Arctic winds, temperatures dropping into the single digits and a good chance for SNOW. Soldier Field will be rocking on Sunday. Let’s take a closer look at one of the key story lines – Mike Martz vs Bill Belichick after the jump.
Apparently Mike Martz has had his fair share of struggles with Bill Belichick, having lost his last four matchups including the 2002 Super Bowl. When asked about that game, Martz dropped some knowledge on it:
“We had a protection error, we had a receiver slip and fall on a slant, and we fumbled right before the half, and they got 17 points off of those three turnovers,” Martz said. “They were a great team, obviously. I’m not taking anything away from that. But for us in that game, it was about turning the ball over like we did that gave them those great opportunities that affected the outcome more than anything else.”
How does Mad Martz feel about the chess game with Belichick? Let’s see:
Although Martz clearly respects Belichick, he scoffed when a reporter asked if the Patriots coach had somehow gotten inside the Martz’s head.
“Oh, God, no,” Martz said. You’ve got to be kidding me. C’mon, serious? I’ve beaten him, too. I went up there on Sunday night and beat him, too. Same year , remember? In fact, after that game, I said this is a Super Bowl team, and I think they were 6-5 or something. I don’t remember what it was. But oh God, no. They’re just a good team. No. I don’t think like that or live like that, I’m sorry, I hate to disappoint you, but those things just don’t happen to me. I guess I’m screwed up. That stuff doesn’t happen to me.”
I hate to say this, but you don’t have details of the game from nearly 10 years ago and don’t have the handy info of their record when you beat them if it hasn’t stuck with you. If Belichick’s 31st ranked defense handles the Bears on Sunday, it could make Martz’s head explode.