Sunday Night the Eagles head up to Soldier Field to face the Chicago Bears, so to catch up on all things Bears I sat down with WCG from the great Bears blog Windy City Gridiron.
So far the Eagles have the best run defense in football. Matt Forte leads all rookies in rushing... Something has to give! Can Forte keep up his pace this weekend?
Matt Forte the running back is not where you have to worry. He has only ran for over 100 yards in one game. The other two were for 87 and 92, so he has been close. The Matt Forte you have to watch out for is Matt Forte the receiver and Matt Forte the clock eater. Forte is currently 2nd on the Bears in receptions with 13 for 105 yards. The Bears have just recently discovered him as a receiver. The one weak spot in the Eagles defense is the area that Forte could hurt them in. Forte is an all around back. He has speed, power, runs with a purpose, sees the field well and as mentioned an above average receiving threat. It won't be often that a team will be able to completely shut him down, he is too good in too many areas for that to happen. However slowing him down is the key to beating the Bears.
I caught some of the Bears game last weekend and watching their special teams a question came to mind... Who is more important to that unit, Devin Hester or coach Dave Toub? Because they looked pretty good even without Hester.
That is a very good question and I don't know if I can answer that without hedging my bets. Hester just by standing back there gives us the best starting field position in all of football and he is the one guy who can change the game anytime he touches the ball. That said you cannot take anything away from Toub. Hester is great and would be great anywhere, but he wouldn't have the success he has had it not been for what Toub has done with the group. The Bears have been blessed through the draft to get guys who excel at the return game. We literally have at least 5 guys who could start on a lot of other teams at that spot, so it makes the loss of Hester look a little less important, but again Hester scares coaches and players and you cannot talk about that enough. To properly evaluate Toub's importance you have to look at the coverage and you have to look at their ability to get to kickers and create problems.
Ok, did I come around full circle yet....good.
It seems like nationally the question facing the Bears is always the quarterback position. Are you happy with Kyle Orton as your starter or would have liked the Bears to have gotten someone else this offseason? Maybe next offseason?
Given what we have, I am happy with Orton. Nobody we could have gotten through the draft would be any better than Orton now. In 2 of the 3 games he hasnt' thrown and interception, which is the main thing we are asking him to do. During the offseason I may have liked them to look at Derek Anderson or Donovan McNabb when they may or may not have been available. Obviously, I'm glad now we didn't go after Anderson. You have to remember that even though Orton has been in the league for 4 years he is still new, so the Bears need to give him the season to see if he is the guy. If not, unfortunately it is back to the draft.
The Bears are 1-2. Both losses are in conference... Even considering how early it is, would you say that this is a must win game?
No, this is not a must win game. The Packers are 2-1, the Bears are 1-2, so even if we lose and the Pack win we still are in the divisional race. I think it is really important for the Bears confidence to win. We destroyed Indy. We controled both Carolina and Tampa Bay until very late in the game, so despite the loses we are playing well, we just need to finish a game.
Which do you prefer? Sunday afternoon games or primetime games?
You have to like the prime time games. They are the only games on, so it adds some spectacle and sense of grandeur to the game. It doesn't hur that every time the Bear are on TV it seems like something big is going to happen. (Arizona comeback, Hester in the Super Bowl, game versus Indy)