Chicago Sun-Times

Who was missing against the Seahawks in October?

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The answer, of course, is Lance Briggs.

The Bears Pro Bowl weakside linebacker did not play in that game, with an ankle injury.

Briggs was diplomatic today, when asked about his potential impact.

"Not really," Briggs said, when asked if he would have made a difference in that game, which the Bears lost 23-20 at Soldier Field. "Not the way the way that game turned out. Obviously, I wanted to play in that game, but Brian Iwuh played great. He did a great job that game, and in the [Washington] Redskins game.

"So, for me, it's wanting to get a first crack at them."

But several of Briggs' teammates disagreed.

"It'll be big to get him back," defensive end Julius Peppers said. "This defense, we all work together. It's not a one-person show. We all have to play our role. But missing Lance was big for us. Having him back in there will settle rotation, and it's going to be huge for us."

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What the Bears were missing in the first game was a coaching staff and an offensive line, that's what was missing. I think they will bring both next Sunday.

On a different subject, do you suppose Seattle's punter is looking forward to the game? He probably doesn't remember much about the first one. Bennett should send him a nice card or something.

Don't forget that we didn't have Eric Peterman back then. Well, we do now! Total beast! Seattle will never be able to stop him. He makes Jerry Rice look like a tike in his diapers.

Looking back, I remember when Chicago had to choose between free agents Lance Briggs, and Bernard Berrian (some people are probably like who's Bernard Berrian?). Bears GM Jerry Angelo went with Briggs...thankfully. I won't lie, I thought Chicago should have went with Berrian over Briggs, and then just thrown reserve linebacker Jamar Williams in at Brigg's spot at weakside linebacker. Wow! Who would have known Angelo knew what he was doing back then when he went with Briggs over Berrian?

Angelo made the right choice. Briggs is a 6 time pro-bowler, and Berrian and Williams are what they are, reserves. Angelo easily replaced Berrian with up and comer Johnny Knox, and again, locked up all-pro Lance Briggs.

Lance Briggs will make a difference sunday, and will be nice to have roaming sideline to sideline waiting for Seahawks runner Marshawn Lynch.

SIDENOTE: Some cry baby fans will say, "Oh Kevin, your such a butt-kisser toward Angelo! Sob sob sob!!" Auhh, I don't think so, theres nothing butt-kissing about this post, Angelo simply made the right choice for the NFC north champion Bears, I'm just pointing that fact out, end of story, now GO BEARS!!

A few people (and I stress "a few") have said that they are on the fence about Angelo, that they really don't have any charged feelings towards the job he's done and I'd say I'm one those people.

You talk about his drafting skills, I mean when it comes to the draft you can do all your research on one guy, have him grade out perfectly, and then in training camp he could get a freak, career-ending injury. Or he signs his contract for the big $$$ and instantly turns into a headcase. You never know. You look at some of the guys he's drafted that didn't work out, maybe they had success elsewhere but, a lot of the so-called experts rated these same guys as "can't miss" players. Luck has a lot to do with it.

Beyond the draft though, Angelo brought in the two players who have most impacted this team: Jay Cutler, who has already in two years broken numerous franchise records, and Julius Peppers, a freakish athlete who gives you the flexibility to rush the passer with the front four.

On the other side, the o-line has been disastrous and I still don't get the rationale for trading a 2nd rounder to Tampa for a defensive end who was a non-factor when he joined the team.

So like I said, I don't necessarily love or hate the guy. I'm on the fence.

As for Berrian, I wanted him to stay but the money he was asking for back then was absolutely ludicrous. Still, he found a sucker in Zygi Wilf and although he looked good one year and actually burned us a few times as a Viking, he has since put on a better disappearing act than David Copperfield. While a lot of fans were barking that the Bears resign or at least franchise Berrian back then, in the long run it seems that Angelo made the right call.

I thought the Bears were right in getting rid of Berrian and said at the time that he was responsible for Grossman's demise because of the passes he dropped, the wrong routes that he ran, and the balls which he should have easily caught being tipped into the hands of a defender for interceptions. I had mixed feelings about Briggs because of the abandoned car incident, but never doubted his ability.I was down on Urlacher when he wanted a new cotract for more money went he was playing so poorly he should have asked for a salary reduction. Happily he has come back this year and is playing great. Without question Peppers has made both Urlacher and Briggs better players.

Mike, probably the best post you have ever left on here period. GO BEARS!!

Mike it's kind of simple Angelo has been the GM for the Bears for 10 years and they have seen the playoff's 4 times. Now you can say well 4 times in 10 years is better than Detroit. But that's about it.

Any team can bring in big name free agents it's not hard to do, it just takes money. Washington does it all the time.

Let's talk about Cutler for a second, 20 mil a year, 2 first picks, 1 thrid round pick. For him to break Bears QB's records means nothing, just look at the Bears QB's and records. So far he has been over priced, talented yes, but he has his issues as you well know.

Peppers is a stud, good investment, but again getting the best player in FA is not the hard part of a GM's job, it's not his say either. The owners have to give him permission for the big contracts, he himself can't sign anything over 20 mil.

So in the last 4 years the Bears with Angelo have been to the playoff's once. If that is your idea of doing a good job thats fine. As for the Draft he is one of hte worst in the NFL, he hasn't had major injuries to most of his players and every team has to deal with the same things in the draft. But his draft success ratio has been bad.

Look it's simple why did they have to trade for Cutler? Why did they have to sign Peppers? It's not like he has not been drafting Ends and QB's. It's not like he hasn't traded for a Couple ends and QB's.

Look at the history of this team after Jim Finks left. It became a FA team. His players where the heart of the 80's and early 90's Bears. After those players where done, the Bears became a FA team. That's why they only go to the playoff's on average of once every 4 years over the last 18 years. Not all Angelo to be sure, but look at the teams, every few years the Bears go into the FA market and load up. They make some trades and they try to build a winninr. Problem is FA and trades are only good for a year or two and then your generally stuck with fat contracts on declining players. That's why the Bears are not consistant winners. Every consistant winner in the league has been and is good at drafting.

I really wouldn;t give Angelo much Credit this year, I know a lot of things have gone their way this season, but given the talent level of this team 11 wins is still impressive. 56 sacks and they still made the playoffs. Marinelli has done a great job, Toub as well. I think Tice has done the best with what he has and is in a bad situation to begin with and is the reason the Bears moved to a balanced attack rather than the Martz I wanna kill Cutler passing game. And they have been healthy, the healthiest team in the nfl hands down.

If you want to as k yourself a question who is the future of this team? Cutler but he needs to really step it up, he could be the best in the NFL with his ability but has yet to put it all together. Looks like Forte as well, and Maybe Knox. Hester maybe but he is already 28 and a special team player. Anyone on the line? No. Olsen? Still waiting for that big breakout year from the first round pick. On defense who is the bright future? What young players are standing out? Who are all these young Angelo Draft picks that are standing out? Forte, Bennett is pretty good but is a role player. Who are these Angelo draft picks that have you sold on the future? Melton a third string rotation player? Major Wright?

Right now without Cutler, Urlacher, and Peppers how good is this team? Take just one of them and try and convince yourself they are in the playoff's using the Angelo draft picks. You know Urlacher, Peppers, Briggs, Tillman, Chris Harris, Anthony Adams, don;t have a lot of time left in the nfl. Their best days are behind them, Briggs and Tillman are in clear decline, Urlacher had a year off, but the wear and tear of this season is not going to make him stronger next year,

How many Angelo draft picks are starting on defense? He has four starters on defense.

How many are starting on offense? 6, but how many are good players. That includes Williams and Webb two guys who should be replaced.

It's a good year for the Bears, but that doesn't mean everyone has done a good job. Anyway they got the playoff's and that's a good thing. But one year will not fix everything.

Here is something Hub hit on, do want a Stop watch GM ala Angelo, Jones, Ruskell or a guy who can just identify talent like Bill B, Kevin Colbert, Ozzie Newsome.

There are two schools basically Angelo and Lovie as well are those stop watch guys, that's why the Bears often struggle to find their starters and often sit better players until they have to bench someone and then are like oh this guy is good we should have started him. Mark Anderson is a perfect example great workout numbers but not a great player. Hester as a number 1, great speed and talent but not a great reciever by any means. It's also why they struggle with the O-Line, workout numbers mean little for that position, it's also why they brought in Tice to help them find linemen, they just don;t draft any which makes it hard on a guy like Tice. Omiylae was signed because he had good athletic ability, Williams was drafted because he had really good athletic ability for a linemen, but that didn't make them good football players. Webb ran a fast 40 for his size and also had good athletic ability. Jerry likes the measurables. But does that make someone a good football player.

Gilbert, and Melton as well. Jerry probably loved the Pool video and Melton ran a really fast 40. Knox is a burner for sure but not really a great reciever but he can fly. Every now and then he grabs a guy known more for his play than talent like a Bennett. But often those guys don't see the field as much as the should in favor of faster players or guys with better measurables.

Kevin I won't call you a butt-kisser or tell you to remove your lips from JA's [butt] but really, you keep trying to find ways to say JA is good for the bears. Go to the archives( December 20 2010 Where the bears stand) I gave you what a real gm and coach should be like. It looks like mike agrees with you but like creighton stated above and what I have stated in past post's, there is NO WAY in hell that we as bear fans should be ok/happy/joyus or whatever about 3 division titles in 7 yrs. I don't care about any other team out there, i don't care if we are better than detroit, oakland, etc. Those teams suck and I want NE numbers look at the archives above. JA doesn't know how to draft or we would not need Cutler or Peppers, yes he hits on 1 every now and then but for my team that I root for that is not good enough. Acountability is the main thing here and JA and lovie are not being held acountable, until they are I will keep posting that they need to go.

"Here is something Hub hit on, do want a Stop watch GM ala Angelo, Jones, Ruskell or a guy who can just identify talent like Bill B, Kevin Colbert, Ozzie Newsome."

Don't you think that Ozzie is a bit like Angelo? Star players he inherited from a former regime (Ray Lewis, Ed Reed), dips into free agency if their is a need (Boldin, Stallworth, T.J.Housh) and really couldn't get much going on a consistent basis without a franchise QB?

Bill B may be one of the best at what he does even if he "misinterprets the rules" every now and then. I just don't think he'd be so much of a genius without Brady at his side.

Colbert, yeah he does a good job. The o-line is still garbage and has been since Big Ben has been in the NFL.

All in all Creighton, you named three guys out of a 32 team League. Sure, everyone wishes they could be top dog but it's real heard to do. While I don't think Angelo is great, I don't think he's as awful as some of the Bears fans make him out to be. Now that we've got a franchise QB, maybe his record won't look so bad in comparison to some of the "better" GMs.

Great post Creighton. I basically said the same thing about the Bear's window of opportunity a few days ago. On the defensive side of the ball, it is a small one and do you believe {I know I don't} that Angelo can re-stock the defense via draft? Will he make another dip into FA in 2-3 years? FA should be to supplement your team, not be the catalyst for an overhaul.

I want someone to show me the "stud" numbers for Peppers? Come on. Is it because he's now a Bear that people want to over hype his presence? I think you made mention in another post that he was a "stud in 14 of the 16 games." I might have that a little wrong, but it's close. Were all 14 games this year? Seriously. I have broken down this guy's numbers forward, backward, and side to side on here. I have seen all of the games and he has greatly under performed his contract. Let's go through it again. By the Bears own website, Peppers had 14 games where he had 4 tackles or less. If I use basic math, that is 1 tackle per quarter of football or less in those games. He had 5 games where he had 2 or fewer tackles. He had 10 games without a sack {a stretch of 5 games and then another stretch of 3 games}. And of his 8 sacks, 38% of them {3} came against a pitiful 3rd string QB who couldn't make a decision and who's #1 receiver was sitting on the sideline with a "hammy".

I liked the Peppers signing. Angelo had to do it. But I remember the posts back when it happened with people putting down what they thought his numbers would be. If someone had said it was going to be the numbers above {54 tackles, 11 assists, 8 sacks, and 3 forced fumbles} I don't think anyone would have been happy with that. He didn't turn this defense around. #1, when they have to play someone good with a balanced attack, or a QB that can pick a zone apart they get killed. #2, it has been a myriad of things that has made the defense somewhat better, but Peppers is a small part of that. No matter what Urlacher, Lovie, Lance, Chris Harris, or Angelo might say. The development of Idonije and Melton along with somewhat stable safety play has helped. The great comeback year of Urlacher has been a big part of it. Also the maturity of Cutler and throwing roughly 45% less Int's than he did last year helped by not putting the defense back out on the field after they had just come off. And last, but not least, a year in which you were able to play part or all of 7 games against 2nd and 3rd string QB's, teams that hadn't won a game in early November, and a team that had layed down on it's coach helps out a defense's numbers. Luck is one thing. Playing that many games with extenuating circumstances is phenomenal.

I think the Cutler "return on investment" is better than we give it credit for. And yes, you are 100% correct when you say that breaking Bear's QB records is like being the tallest midget. But looking at his O-line for 2 years and who he's had to throw to, I think he's matured greatly. I was hoping for a 25/18 year. He's done better than that by ratio. And if {ring Murph's "what if" bell} he can improve to say 27-30/13-15 next year, that would be incredible. personally, I don't think it's out of the realm.

The measurable thing has been a Bear's staple since Vainisi left. Look at Wanny. Alonzo Spellman {I know, he was 2 years before Wanny, but after Vainisi}, Curtis Conway, John Thierry{sp}, & Salaam, right off the top of my head. Beasts in the weight room or on a track, but how much football talent did they have. With Salaam, it was the Heisman trophy. Anyway, great posts.

Good posts today even though a little inconsistent and incorrect in places.Angelo will be back regardless of what we say and so will Lovie and all his coaches unless they get head coaching jobs somewhere or big, big dollars offered by another team.If the Bears win the Super Bowl this year, then suddenly Angelo and Smith will be miraculously transformed into geniuses who pulled a team everyone thought would finish low in their division up to the highest high.Hester, Knox, Olsen and Melton were certainly good picks, but, as was said, without Cutler and Peppers this team would never have gotten this far.

Mike I only named three guys, but I could go on but I really don;t want to do all 32 teams GM's. Mike the fact is and the numbers confirm it, the Bears are mediocre at best under Angelo, Detroit would be the worst and the Bears are only one step above them in the last decade. Your talking about a team that has consistantly played easy scheduals, is in a week division, 1 Super bowl winner since 85.

Mike Ozzie Newsome Drafted Ed Reed, that was his first pick as a GM. Flacco, Rice, Grubbs, Oher, Yanda, Chester, Suggs, McClain, Ngata, Gregg, Landry, Gaither(great pick) etc. You mentioned Ozzie got lucky with Lewis, well Angelo got Urlcher and Brown.

The only hold over is Lewis. Plus he hired a pretty good rookie Head Coach don;t you think?

But you want me to keep going with the GM's. Ok Bill Pollian, A.J. Smith, Tannenbaum(took over in 2006 and quickly made the Jets into contenders), Scott Pioli who I wanted the Bears to hire and fire Angelo, Pioli has close to the impossible and turned the Chiefs around pretty damn quicky, Jerry Reese, Roseman, Ted Thompson, and Loomis. Probably a couple more but I really don;t want to do them all.

Tell you what Jerry Angelo 2001-now. I'll do 2002 since he was hired after the draft and that draft is not his fault. So 2002 ok? 9 season including this one. 3 playoff apperances. A 500 playoff record to this point, 5 losing season and 4 winning season. Are you saying these are good things? But we will continue. And throw this in their since I know you hate the Wanny Jon era. Angelo 3 playoffs in 9 years, Wanny Jon 2 playoffs in 8 years. Not really all that different.

Since 2002 other teams.

Arizona playoffs twice, Super Bowl once, 2 winning seasons and 1 8-8.

Atlanta 3 playoffs, 5 winning seasons and 1 8-8 season. So Better than Angelo

Baltimore, 5 playoffs, 6 winning seasons.

Buffalo, 0 Playoffs, 1 winning season 1 8-8 season

Carolina 3 playoff's 3 winning seasons 2 8-8 seasons Draw with Angelo

Cincinnati 2 playoffs, 2 winning seasons 3 8-8 seasons

Cleveland 1 playoff, 2 winning seasons

Dallas, 4 playoff's 5 winning seasons

Denver, 3 playoff's 4 winning seasons 2 8-8 sesons Joined the CFL after Orton arrived.

Detroit, Zero playoffs, zero winning season, please stop comparing the Bears to this team and saying well we are better than them. Everyone is better than them.

Gay Bay, Sorry Green Bay, 6 PLAYOFF'S, 6 WINNING SEASONS, 1 8-8 SEASON. That means the Pakcers have been better than the Bears under Angelo. This is really all you need to know Mike.

Houston 1 Winning season 2 8-8, been in the league since 2002. Strangly enough they make more money than the Bears do.

Indianapolis, 9 playoffs's, 9 winning season, 1 Super Bowl Ring.

Jacksonville, 2 Playoff's 3 winning season and 2 8-8 seasons, You notice how the Bears are kinda in the Jacksonville, Carolina range. That's not a good thing.

KC, 3 playoff's 4 winning seasons, 1 8-8 season. See Jacksonville post.

Miami, 1 playoff, 4 winning seasons

Queens, 3 playoff's 4 winning seasons, 2 8-8 seasons

New England, 7 Playoff's 9 winning seasons, and 2-3 Super Bowl wins, don;t wanna be like these clowns, not when we can be like the Jags, Panthers, and Chiefs.

New Orleans, 3 playoff's 4 winning seasons, 3 8-8 seasons and 1 Super Bowl win.

New York, 5 playoff's 5 winning seasons, 1 Super Bowl win

New York Jets, 5 Playoff's 6 winning seasons, It's bad enough when one team from New York has been better than the Bears, but the Jets also, I mean come on.

Oakland, 1 playoff, one winning season, 1 8-8 season

Philadelphia, 7 playoff's 7 winning seasons, 1 8-8 season.

Pittsburgh, 6 Playoff's 7 winning seasons, 1 8-8 season and 2 Super Bowl wins

San Diego, 5 playoff's 6 winning seasons, 2 8-8 seasons

San Fanny, 1 playoff, 1 winning season 1 8-8 season.

Seattle, 6 playoff's, 5 winning seasons(imagine that)

St. Louis 2 playoff's, 1 winning season and two 8-8 seasons

Tampa Bay, 3 playoff's 5 winning seasons,

Tennessee 4 playoff's, 4 winning seasons, 2 8-8 seasons.

Wahington 2 playoff's, 2 winning seasons 1 -8-8 season.

The Elite of this over the last 9 years.
1 New England
2. Pit
3. Indy

Next up the consistant contenders.

4. Baltimore
5. Philly
6. NY Giants
7. Green Bay
8. San Diego
9. Seattle
10. NY Jets

Next Up more winning seasons than losing seasons but not in the playoff's enough No numbers or specific order for these guys.

Tampa Bay

The mediocre middle, below 500 in playoff apperances and Seasons, year to year no order.

The Bears
New Orleans

The Next group is the Bottom of the barrell group or Celler Dwellers you can figure them out yourself

And After the Celler Dwellers comes that stuff you stepped in at the park group

None of this is biased, It's not like I want to say Seattle has been consistantly in playoff's over the last 9 years, but they have. The Bears 3 times in 9 years is 33 percent. Not really that good and you can see more teams then you probably think go to the playoff's more often than you think.

With Angelo the Bears are on the cusp of being middle of the pack over 9 years and they spent a lot to do that. Teams like Carolina and Jacksonville don't spend money like the Bears do.

Mike do you want the Bears to be a mediocre team or would you like them to get into the elite teams. They will never do that with Angelo. The ywill never be that playoff' consistant and will always be forced to rely on free agents.

Creighton, buddy, I want the Bears to be 19-0 every season for the next century. I can't really argue against your stats, but again I'm just on the fence regarding Angelo; don't hate him, don't love him. Bringing a franchise QB however when Chicago has been missing one since the 40's was pretty impressive you've got to admit, no matter how he did it.

Again, let's see how Angelo's record looks after a few years now that the QB position has been solidified.

Hey you know I am big Cutler fan and I am glad Angelo got him and I gave him his props for getting him when he did.

I will also give him credit for that O-Line which is all him, and putting a 20 million dollar a year QB behind it. I'll give him Credit for watching Hanie get injured behind that line, for Cutler gettign hurt and for Collins getting knocked out.

Just like I will give Lovie credit for watching his QB get killed in the Giant's game in the first half and not walking over to Martz and saying "you run the damn ball before he gets killed back there" in what was a close half.

I'll give Angelo credit for allowing Martz to become the OC with an offense that has seen it's numbers drop and sacks go up. An offense that is not suited to a read react QB.

I'll give Martz credit for the Seattle game when he once again decided to go with to much passing and to many deep drops and moved away from quick drops that where shown ot be working.

I'll give Martz credit for jumping ship on the run game in the last game of the season and watching his QB get beat up again because Martz want's to show everyone his brilliant passing game even though they where killing the Pack with the run.

I'll give Lovie credit for calling a timeout in the Packers game even though he hasn;t wanted anything to do with the offense all year he decided it was time to put his stamp on it and cost them a 17 yard gain and momentum.

I'll give Martz credit for seeing that quick drops where pretty much the only thing the passig game could do effectivly back in week two and then ignoring that fact till the bye.

If I am going to give them credit I will give them credit for everything and not just what they do right.

I know you love the Bears Mike, and I won;t argue with the good things they have done, I just am not going to ignore everything else. Like one good season for me does not make the last 4 years right. Like I hope they don't give Lovie an extension, he hasn't earned it with one good year and a lot of help. 4 seasons he is 1-4, great year but it's not like the rebuilt the team, it's still the same group of players with the addition of Peppers and it's an older group of guys. The offense has been rebuilt and outside of Cutler and Forte I am not really impressed with anyone else. I am not looking forward to watching this O-Line for the next 6 years, none of these recievers thrill me.

I'll say good job this year but they need to be a lot more consistant if I am going to say they are doing a good job. Not that it matters what I say or think to them, but it matters to me.

I don't expect 19-0 ever, I just expect them to consistantly win. They are the Bears and if you want to compete with the big boys you better start being one of the best personal groups in the nfl(which they are not) and they better eat your wheaties. The two keys to nfl greatness.

It's like I watch Angelo make these moves to at least try and improve the D-Line even if the trade for Gains Adams was stupid, they tried. But they don;t do that for the O-Line, Mankins was out there and they did nothing, since his return to the Pats he is the number 1 rated guard in the nfl in terms of protection and run blocking. Bears could use a little of that. Where is the effort for the offense? You go get Cutelr 2 years ago and do nothing to help him. WTF is that? You knew you where getting Urlacher back healthy and that was going to help the defense, they focused on drafting defense the last 4 out of 5 years and they get Peppers. Let me tell you when you focus that much on the defense it's shouldn;t be like oh wow they have a good defense. It should be they better be good.

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