Chicago Sun-Times

5-3 record often feels like 2-6, Lovie Smith says

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The Bears are 5-3, a half-game behind the idle Green Bay Packers (6-3). But Bears coach Lovie Smith sometimes gets the feeling his team is far worse off.

"We're 5-3 right now, and a lot of times it seems like we're 2-6 or something like that," Smith said. "We're a good football team, and, in time, we'll prove that more and more.

"I like our position."

The Bears finished strong to hold off the winless Buffalo Bills 22-19 in Toronto Sunday, and they prepare for the 3-5 Minnesota Vikings next weekend at Soldier Field.

"We're excited to get the fifth win. We needed to get it to set up a huge game for us this week against Minnesota," Smith said. "Back in the division. I think we've won four division games in a row, and we're anxious to play the Vikings for the first time."

Here are some other highlights from Smith's press conference:

* Smith on Jay Cutler's ability to run the ball: "It helps a lot. You normally don't account for the quarterback. He's kind of a free guy. You want him to stay back in the pocket. Sometimes, you can get a big run, a big play, from that.
And Jay of course is mobile. He's fast, and he knew when to get down too. So those plays were big, with him using his feet."

* Smith on if they Cutler's mobility into the game plan: "That's something that's always in the game plan, when things break down or you see an opening, especially on maybe some of the third down plays, knowing exactly how much you need. It doesn't have to be third down. If you can get a positive play, you see that everyone is off, playing zone coverage, or sometimes even with man coverage, guys turn their back and they take off. Mobile quarterbacks can make a big difference and we definitely have one with wheels."

* Smith on the play of the offensive line, including guard Chris Williams: "Our entire line played well. Kind of talk about the line as a group. It's good to get that group together. We've talked about keeping the same group together for a while. But, they played well. In order for us - Jay was only sacked one time, I felt we had good protection, pass wise - and they allowed us to rush for over a 100 yards. That normally kind of tells you how an offensive line played. We're pleased with how everyone played. Of course, we still need to improve in a lot of areas. We'll do that."

* Smith on if the current starting five on the o-line will stay in tact: "We like this group. As I talk to you Monday, we like this group."

* Smith on balance: "When I say balance, I'm talking about just having a commitment to both. Giving what the defense gives you. But you have to be productive in both areas. And for us, of course, it was about us being able to run the ball more. We talk a lot about Chester, talked about getting Matt involved, and they had over 28 touches, run and pass. To me, that's the balance I'm talking about. Being able to run the ball effectively and pass."

* Smith on Minnesota drama: "I don't have time to follow drama. I'm about we have work that we're trying to get taken care of here with the Bears. No time to - I don't read what you guys write, so I'm definitely not gonna read what they're talking about somebody else. I know a lot about the Bears. I can talk on it."

* Smith on cornerback depth, in light of the Al Harris release by the Green Bay Packers: "I'm very happy with it. You mention a guy like Corey Graham. All he does is just everything we ask him to do. He hadn't gotten an opportunity to get many other plays except for special teams right now. But yeah, we're pleased with our depth for our football team. That is one of the storylines that goes unnoticed a little bit, our depth. We don't have a lot of injuries. You know, getting a player like Major Wright back into the mix a little bit yesterday, we didn't get him as many reps as we would've liked, but getting him back involved. Hopefully we can get Zack there and we'll have guys to choose from. I am familiar with Al Harris. Al and I started together back at Tampa a long time ago. He's a good football player that will land somewhere."

* Smith on Julius Peppers: "He's gonna be OK. It did. Especially after you go back and watch the video. It looked a lot worse than it ended up being. It's gonna take an awful lot to keep him out, to knock him down. But he's fine, good to go."

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OMG, is that Lovie Smith trying to "channel" Stuart Smalley (I'm smart enough, we're big enough and the NFL is just lame enough for us Bears to be 5-3.")?

Hahaha their is a reason it feels like 2-6. Because the team is not good and that Buffalo game showed they didn't fix much during the bye.

The line gave up only one sack. However this was not do to great line play as Buffalo often got lots of pressure. It's just Buffalo is a horrible pass rushing team, the Bears stayed with their 6,7 and 8 man protection schemes against a really bad pass rushing team. Could not run block at all against the worst rush defense in the last 3 decades, the Bills where consistantly hitting the backs in the backfield. I mean my god how bad do you have to be?

Cutler improved his hot reads, but his footwork, timing, and poor reads where still a problem. He is now clearly looking for the rush. This is not a good offense for him he is a read and react player in timing offense. His stats look ok but he made a lot of mistakes in the game, the whole offense did. The last TD to Olsen was a broken play in which Olsen, Bennett and Knox all ran to the same place on the same routs. Bennett tried to break up the pass. WTF?

I am not sure what Lovie means when he says they ran the ball effectivly. They got hammered in the run game and if not for Cutlers scrambles on pass plays the run game was nothing more than a joke against one of the worst run defenses ever.

The defense showed some holes in the secondary and Fitz blew plenty of plays late to kill the Bills missing wide open recievers all through the 4th.

Now are the Bears ready for the second half of the season? Me thinks not yet.

The Vikings next week with Favre (pic boy)I don't know what it is with Favre but he sure likes those pics and he has thrown a lot in his career as well.

The defense was not exciting and the defensive pass rush is really not very good, some pressure but not a lot. When is the D line going to really start getting to the QB? What the Bears don't have on the line that Green Bay does is speed rushers, it seems like it takes 5 minutes for these guys to get to the QB.

Is Peppers really earning his big money contract yet? I don't know about the rest of you but I was expecting some big numbers coming out of Peppers, which have not yet happened although I also know that he is double teamed often. The great pass rushers in NFL history somehow found ways to beat double teams. Will Peppers have the numbers to make the Hall of Fame after his career? Most likely he is a borderline prospect at present and will not make it. Peppers was completely dominant 5 years ago but now he is more pedestrian than he is unstoppable.

Defense needs more aggression, they played mediocre. But then again the Bears have been a mediocre team for the last three years on all sides of the ball except special teams.

Offense was OK, running game against the Bills hapless run defense was stymied. I was impressed with Cutler however, he seemed to be consciously making good decisions and managing the game more effectively.

Special teams, the blocked extra point was huge at that point in the game.

Bears win but did they make a statement with this win? Did the Packers make a statement last night against Dallas?

Go Bears, thank goodness you were able to win a bout against your little brother yesterday (like the CST writer indicated) but pretty soon little Billy might just get up and kick your but unless some improvement occurs and occurs quickly.

Love and hate the Bears, jeez I am starting to sound like a Cubs fan.

Did anyone hear what happened to Wade Phillips today? HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE! A great coach getting fired. I'm so scared the same thing could happen to Lovie and Jerry.

5 and 11 or 6 and 10

At least it should be a decent draft slot, unless anjello is still in charge of the draft !!!!

Agreed Creighton running game sucked. Take away Cutler and the 1 good run by Forte and we looked like bad. With 2 weeks to prepare for a winless team and barley beat them is not a good sign for the 2nd half. Bears should have scored 40 points and given up only 10. Hope McCaskey still wants to be like Jerry and will fire Lovie.

Maybe it feels like 2 and 6 because it could easily be that.The Bears did luck out on at least three games and have definitely not bee awe-inspiring. I'm still hoping they get everything together and thought they might do that against the Bills, but even there they had to come from behind.Of course, they could eaily have won two more games as well turning, as they say, victories into defeat by ineptitude.

A 3 Point Home Loss To Seattle. A 3 Point Home Loss To Washington.
Two Weeks To Game Plan For A 3 Point Victory Over The Worst Team In The League.. And After Staring Up At The Jumbo-Tron With That "Deer In The Head Lights" Look Upon His Goard?? The Luckiest Millionare On The Planet, Feels Everything Is "Well". Now That Just Figures!

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This page contains a single entry by Sean Jensen published on November 8, 2010 12:43 PM.

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