With all the talk about getting RB Matt Forte the ball more, one might think he wasn’t even at the game week 1 vs the Cincinnati Bengals, and who knew if HC Marc Trestman would be smart enough to get Forte involved in game 2.
Forte carried the ball 19 times for 90 yards (a 4.7 yard average) and caught 11 balls for 71 yards for a total of 161 yards of offense. His longest run of the day was 24 yards and he did not make it into the end zone, but he did something that was almost just as good; Matt Forte helped keep drives alive and moved the chains.
He ran between the tackles and outside the tackles. He caught passes in the flat as the outlet for Bears QB Jay Cutler and he ran receiver routes.
It was good to see him utilized like this. He will give opposing teams fits and will cause D coordinators to lose sleep when preparing to face Chicago.
For the 2nd straight week I saw Jay Cutler make plays with his legs. One was when he ran for a 1st down but it was more than that. He moved the pocket; he rolled out; he bought time to throw down field. This is a different Jay.
HC Marc Trestman is a good play caller. He is creative and he takes calculates risks. Sometimes those risks backfire like throwing over the middle on 1st and goal from the 3 yard line or running the same end-around a second time after it worked so well the first time. But like I said, he is a good play caller; the way he designs plays and provides options to Cutler is like a breath of fresh air. I actually get excited to watch the offense work instead of getting a sick feeling to my stomach every time Cutler drops back to pass.
Eric Weems is a good special teams player. The punt that the Vikings player jumped into the end zone and threw the ball back into play and Weems tried to knock the ball back into the end zone for a touch back was brilliant. Once the ball is touched by the kicking team, it cannot be advanced. Minnesota could not have obtained possession in the end zone for a touchdown. Weems’ heads up play resulted in giving the Bears an extra 18 yards; they were able to start on the 20 yard line instead of the 2.
Did anybody else notice Jay Cutler get hit helmet to helmet on his 2nd run in the 1st half by Vikings LB Chad Greenway? It was borderline but deep down I’m glad it wasn’t called. Greenway didn’t look like he was trying to hurt Cutler; it was just a good football play.
I know the field was wet and it was raining pretty hard at times but the Bears need to tackle better. I stopped counting after I hit 20. Arm tackling will not cut it going forward.
LB James Anderson is a good player. He has made some impressive plays and has been all over the field. James Anderson needs to have the confidence to step in front of a receiver, catch the ball and take it to the house. Late in the 3rd quarter, Minnesota was in the red zone and Vikings QB Christian Ponder threw to his TE. Anderson stuck his arm out and knocked the ball down. I was pleased but I was also disappointed. As I watched the replay, I noticed that Anderson was in excellent position and had he brought his other hand around the big TE, he could’ve intercepted the pass and had a great return if not going all the way for a pick-6 because there was nothing but grass in front of him. He is new. He will learn that’s how you do things the Bear way.
The Bears got called for two weaksause penalties; the horse collar on CB Charles Tillman and the holding on OT Jermon Bushrod. Tillman’s hand slid to where it looked like he was grabbing the back of the shoulder pads but upon closer inspection, he wasn’t. Bushrod did nothing but use Jared Allen‘s momentum and pushed him to the ground. If anything he kept a hand on Allen and made it difficult for him to get up. Both penalties were lame.
Minnesota had 350 yards of total offense for the game. In three consecutive drives in the 2nd half they had a 13 play drive of 81 yards resulting in 3 points; another 13 play drive of 79 yards resulting in 3 points and an 8 play drive of 43 yards also resulting in 3 points, for a total of 32 plays for 203 yards and 9 points. Over half their yards and their offensive scoring came on three drives.
Matt Forte was targeted 11 times which was one more time than Brandon Marshall was. They both have 15 receptions on the season. I don’t know about you but I like the balance and where the offense is going.
Jay Cutler was 28/39 in the passing game which is almost a 72% completion rate for the game. Many of his passes were dump offs to Forte but Cutler did take his shots down field as well. For the year he is 49/72 for a 68% completion rate. His career average is 61%. He is also averaging 7.4 yards per throw this season compared to his career average of 7.2 yards per throw. And his career QB rating is 84.3 but after two games his QB rating is 95.4 that is a big difference!
What interesting things did you notice during the game Bears fans?