1. Q: If the Bears happen to lose to the winless Bills Sunday, is there any hope of any changes of any kind, from front office to coaching to players? Some heads gotta role if the Bears lose to the Bills! --- Omay
A. If they lose Sunday, changes are coming. I won't be until after the season, but they'll be coming, all right. As tough as their second-half schedule is, the Bears can't lose to the Bills and still make the playoffs. If they lose Sunday --- I'm not predicting they will lose but have been getting a weird vibe as the week goes on --- the second could end up in the ditch.
2. Q: They keep saying they are going to use Chester Taylor in short-yardage situations. Why hasn't it happened yet? Chicago needs a hard-nosed running back that will knock you back a few yards. I think Chester is the man for the job. If not then why not try a few fullback plays up the middle with Dez Clark? Also, what happened to Greg Olsen. Is he still with the team? --- Stanman
A: They did use Chester on fourth-and-1 against the Seahawks and he picked up the first down. Unfortunately, they tried a sneak with Cutler and we all know what happened. Personally, I would use defensive lineman Henry Melton. The guy scored 16 touchdowns at Texas as a short-yardage back. It was difficult for Lovie to hide his contempt when I asked him if he was considering this, though. They're 0-for-10 from the 1 and he still acts like he has all the answers. Sigh. Olsen is still with the team. Unfortunately for him, he's trapped in a Mike Martz offense that doesn't use tight ends much.
3. Q: Before this years draft I told anyone who would listen that the Bears should take an offensive lineman with every pick in the draft. Most people agreed with my assessment. As we watch this group struggle week to week somebody has to take responsibility for this obvious failure. It has been a weak area of the team for years. I believe it was also responsible for Cedric Benson's poor season. If the average fan can see it, why can't the Bears? I think the buck stops at Angelo and he should be fired! What is your assessment and who do you feel is responsible? --- Aleck J Rinaldo
A: If the offensive line doesn't improve in the second half Angelo will be guilty of a miscalculation of epic proportions and will deserve to be fired. People want me to stand on a soap box and shake my fist in indignation at Angelo. I don't have it in me. It's not like he was trying to fail. His record speaks for itself. It is what it is. There's no way for him to hide from it. I do believe he planned to use high picks to rebuild the offensive line before shipping two first-round picks and a third-rounder to Denver for Cutler.
4. Q: What is Lovie's record in regards to challenges this year and the last few years and how does he rank in regards to the other head coaches in this category? --- dahlillama
A: Smith has had 12 challenges upheld and three reversed this season for a 25-percent success rate, which is better than Bears' opponents, who are averaging 14.3 percent. Since being named Bears coach, Smith has had challenges reversed 30.8 percent of the time while opposing coaches have had challenges reversed 38.4 percent. Of course, the elephant in the room is Jay Cutler's fumble on the goal line that Smith chose not to challenge in a loss to the Redskins. That doesn't show up on the stats but could be a key factor in the Bears season.
5. Q: By having a "running game," do you think Martz means the run after the catch? Finally, of the remaining nine games, how many wins are you predicting? (I'm saying 2 -- Bills and Vikes) --- Seedy Backslash
A: Your first question is the funniest one I've fielded this year. I shared it in the Halas Hall press room and got lots of chuckles. As for your second question, the Bears are third best in the league in points allowed. If the offense can get it together and put some points on the board they should be able to win some games regardless of how tough their schedule is. That said, based on what I've seen so far, I would predict three wins for a final record of 7-9. I hope we're both wrong.
6. Q: Who are the top candidates to replace Lovie and Jerry at seasons end? --- Malone
A: My personal wish list would be short --- Jeff Fisher, Bill Cowher, Jon Gruden.
7. Q: Although Angelo has neglected the o-line for years, how much of this mess the Bears are in do you think is his fault or is it the coaches fault? I bet if some of the Bears were on different teams they would be Pro Bowl players. They way they are using these guys is a joke! Look at Greg Olsen, Matt Forte, and even Garrett Wolfe, to name a few. You can't fault Jerry for going out and getting Chester Taylor, who could start for many teams, and this coaching staff won't use him. This is frustrating and there has to be change soon! --- Tripper
A: That is the biggest question that will have to be sorted out if the Bears' collapse. If things go bad, I think they will be equally culpable, although it's difficult to be successful as a coach when you're given such spotty talent. Expect to hear lots, lots more on this if the team starts losing.
8. Q: Neil please tell us why Cutler was better with the Broncos than he is with the Bears? According to the Bears they are loaded with offensive talent and Mike Martz is the greatest offensive mind ever. So it's all Jay Cutler's fault right? --- Creighton
A: He not only had a very good line in Denver, but he had incredible talent at the skill positions and a coach and scheme that fit him to a tee. Just importantly, that talent fit the scheme and fit together. The Bears have some offensive talent, no question, but it doesn't fit together for whatever reason. That has been true since Rex Grossman was taking snaps. For years now, there has been something fundamentally inconsistent about the Bears offense that extends beyond the quarterback position. I'm still trying to sort out just what it is.
9. Q: I know this may be a dumb question, but is there anybody on the wavier wire that the Bears can pick up to help the O-line? I know we get Roberto Garza back this week but they still need more help.--- Will Riley
A: Not a stupid question, Will. A lot of people have wondered the same thing. Basically, what you describe is how the Bears acquired Edwin Williams. He was signed after being released by the Redskins and ended up starting. The problem is, the only people available on the street are other teams' rejects. That's not to say they can be effective, but they have usually been released for a reason. Sometimes these players can be developed into solid performers but they are typically projects and it takes time. The Bears already have plenty of players like that.