Drivin’ Deez Nuts: The Lovie Games

Sept 13, 2012; Green Bay, WI, USA; Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith watches from the sidelines during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-US PRESSWIRE

Amidst all the controversy over “the bump heard ‘round the world,” I think people are really losing sight of the biggest problem in Chicago Bears football.  Boomer suggested that if the Bears can’t win a Super Bowl, Jay Cutler is the person to blame.  I’m not buying it.  In my lifetime, I’ve seen Brad Johnson (2002), Trent Dilfer (2000), and Jim McMahon (1985) “win” Super Bowls.  Yes, they had great defenses, but they also had something else that Cutler lacks.  A competent head coach.

We have all experienced Lovie Smith’s ineptitude with challenge flags, but let me give you some numbers.  Lovie has challenged 67 plays since joining the Bears in 2004, and 23 times the play was reversed (34.3 percent success rate).  Bears opponents have challenged 71 plays since 2004 and had 31 plays reversed (43.6 percent success rate).  To me, this means that any average coach can make better decisions than Lovie.  And I’m not even going to get into his predilection for first/third quarter timeouts.

Overall, Lovie is the one to blame for the Bears lack of Super Bowl championships.  Would I like him to show some more passion on the sidelines?  Yes, but that isn’t the reason I think he stinks.  The actions that show his inability to lead a team are his flip-flopping and convoluted head games.

When D.J. Moore gave his dissenting opinion about Cutler’s actions Thursday night in Green Bay, Lovie said, “I talk to our players, but I don’t tell them what to say, and don’t stop them from saying anything.  If you have something to say, just make sure you put your name behind it.  That’s the message.”

Then Lovie goes on to say, “But, of course, the message to our football team is that we’re a team.  … There are things that you should keep within our group.”

Correct me if I am wrong, but there are conflicting messages there:  “[I] don’t stop them from saying anything,” to “… There are things that you should keep within out group.”  Then Moore said that Lovie “wasn’t happy at all,” about his comments about Cutler.  Well, duh.  It’s because Moore thought he could say anything, as long as he put his name behind it.

This type of confusing talk is the same thing that Lovie gives to the media and fans.  Brian Urlacher didn’t have surgery.  Matt Forte doesn’t have a high ankle sprain.  Rex is our quarterback.   Can we believe anything that Lovie says?  Does he play these same games in the locker room?

I know all the players say they like Lovie as a head coach, but I don’t think leaders need to be liked.  They need to be respected.  I think Tom Coughlin is a good example of a man who’s perceived as mean and grumpy but is well-respected.  In fact, Coughlin has the same winning percentage over his career as Lovie Smith.  Coughlin is 143-115 (.554), while Lovie is 72-58 (.554).

What separates Coughlin from Lovie are things like taking the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars to the playoffs in their second thru fifth years of existence.  Their quarterback was the “great” Mark Brunell.  Recently, he has helped the train wreck that was Eli Manning win two Super Bowls.  Who would have thought that five years ago?  I think everyone needs to pull back a little and look at the big picture.  If a company fails, you don’t blame the accounting department for not having enough money, you blame the executive management.

Who needs to go if the Chicago Bears want to win a Super Bowl?

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Topics: Chicago Bears, Jay Cutler, Lovie Smith

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  • Shmeds

    Well said sir. I could not have put it in better terms myself. I think the Lovie train has come and gone and I wish the Bears would hire a real head coach instead of someone who takes all the credit for winning but none for losing!

  • DBcoach25

    I’m sick and tired of people jumping on Lovie Smith. Over 95% of you have not the first clue on how to coach a position group, so I won’t mention the idea of being a head coach. The comment is clear if you take the time to listen and understand. He allows his players to be men but would like team stuff kept in house. He lets them know they have to stand behind what they say. Lovie stands for team and team success. You all worship Ditka but a year after the super bowl he tore the team apart! Like I said earlier, you have not a clue of what it takes to be a head coach. To get a clue, you should start by coaching youth football!!! Dumbass

    • Deez

      Clearly, the comment is not clear. Had he said something along the lines of “Players are free to speak their minds as long as their words don’t affect our team chemistry,” the statement would be clear. What he said was two contradictory statements, “I don’t tell them what to say, and don’t stop them from saying anything. If you have something to say, just make sure you put your name behind it. That’s the message,” and “But, of course, the message to our football team is that we’re a team. … There are things that you should keep within our group.” He says “the message” twice, but “the” implies that their is only “one”. If he has one message, how can it be two different philosophies… “say anything” (which means ANYTHING and never implies less than ANYTHING) as well as “there are things that you should keep within our group.”