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August 12, 2004 at 10:54 am #47231
For Some Football…. :aliensmile:
The Mighty BEARS play the lambs…er Rams tonite, hooked up with nfl field pass so I can at least hear the audio
We’ve had some horrifying injuries during camp, Brian Urlacher out with pulled hamstring , Jerry Azumah out for probably the season with a neck injury , tons of other key players banged up Lovie changed the preseason workouts in a huge way, hopefully it pays off…
Keep your eyes on this game. . .
Sure, it’s only an exhibition game–and the first one at that–but when Lovie Smith leads the Bears onto the field Thursday night in St. Louis, there will be quite a bit at stake
By David Haugh
Tribune staff reporter
August 12, 2004
BOURBONNAIS, Ill. — Many NFL coaches probably believe the cliche "It doesn’t matter if you win or lose, it’s how you play the game" came from one of their colleagues while devising a game plan for an exhibition game.
Truer words were never spoken about the NFL preseason.
But the score being irrelevant Thursday night in St. Louis when the Bears play the Rams doesn’t mean nothing is at stake.
Here are five points of emphasis that matter to Bears fans getting their first glimpse of Lovie Smith’s team.
Quarterback play should be revealing
1. Rex Grossman will play one quarter Thursday, but he played only nine quarters last season and look what an impression he made. It will be telling to watch Grossman’s decision-making running an offense that he has devoted the off-season to learning–an offense so voluminous that it’s not entirely installed yet.
When backup Jonathan Quinn takes over, he cannot pass on his first real opportunity to show that he deserves the faith the Bears have placed in him. A bad outing in his first game action with the Bears would negate much of the progress Quinn made last week at the scrimmage in Macomb against the Rams.
Finally, No. 3 quarterback Craig Krenzel gets his first shot to show Bears fans that molecular biologists can throw tight spirals too.
Kick returners’ opening auditions
2. Let the auditions begin. Rookie Bernard Berrian gets the first opportunity Thursday to reward the confidence the coaching staff has placed in him by naming him the No. 1 return man in place of injured Jerry Azumah.
Berrian’s blazing speed provides the Bears’ passing offense a dimension it has lacked, but finding seams in the kickoff coverage requires patience, elusiveness and discipline. The Bears think Berrian, an explosive kick returner at Fresno State, can duplicate that success in the NFL.
If not, scrappy veteran Ahmad Merritt gives the Bears some insurance.
Merritt says his experience returning kicks should give him an edge over Berrian, and his first chance to prove it could come Thursday. On punt returns, R.W. McQuarters does it as well as anybody in the NFC, but if either Bobby Wade or Nathan Vasher look like they can be trusted beginning Thursday night, it might not be worth risking injury to another starting cornerback.
Pressure already on defensive line
3. How well the Bears stop the run, especially with the much-ballyhooed tandem of defensive tackles Tommie Harris and Tank Johnson expected to see plenty of action, should provide an early barometer on the rookies’ progress and a long-term prognosis on the defense’s prospects. Defending the run looks like it could be one of the big weaknesses of the unit, adding pressure to the front four.
The other anticipated weakness, rushing the passer, looked like a team strength against the Rams in Macomb when the Bears had four sacks. None of them came from ends Michael Haynes and Alex Brown, however, and those two must show something Thursday to indicate the Bears’ edge rushers lost all that weight for a reason.
Smith’s game management
4. Lovie Smith called this game huge. That was his exact word. It’s a Thursday night game in August against a team not even on the regular-season schedule, and Smith was worried whether he would be able to sleep. That’s a good thing. It illustrates that the first-year head coach, leading a team onto the field for the first time, understands and embraces the responsibilities before him. But it also suggests a level of anxiety that might exist in Smith, and the two coordinators calling an NFL game for the first time, or the eight assistant coaches making their debuts in an NFL game. How efficiently the Bears get in and out of huddles, make situational substitutions on defense, and handle their sideline decorum represents one of the more subtle aspects to monitor this preseason.
The offensive metamorphosis
5. Nobody signifies the new offensive look and style of the Bears more than running back Thomas Jones, whose jet-like quickness and combustible strength will be on display for the first time. So far in camp, Jones has been used in a variety of ways–on toss sweeps or in motion and on pass routes–designed to get him the ball on the perimeter. Seeing him run between the tackles will offer a good measure of whether the Bears really will need Anthony Thomas to come back to get the tough yard. Moreover, the entire offense’s revamped philosophy of taking smart, aggressive risks downfield in the passing game should remind Bears’ fans that a new season is indeed upon us.August 12, 2004 at 2:47 pm #104277
Go RaiderS!!!!August 12, 2004 at 6:45 pm #104278
I feel another season of "Football Mania" coming up….
GO BEARS GO!August 13, 2004 at 12:22 pm #104279
I actually got to watch the game last night, KTLA5 didn’t block the game like they did last year… :aliensmile:
We won 13-10, 1st quarter was pleasing, Grossman looked good, Thomas Jones made some great runs, David Terrell made a wicked catch…nice change Way too many penalties, had a td called back d/t offensive holding, 19 penalties for ~180 yards
2nd qb Quinn is tough, got no time to throw the ball…wicked sandwich sack b/t two huge ram rushers Molecular Biologist Krenzel showed he can play qb in the nfl, wicked hail mary that should have been caught to end the game but no, went to OT. Wicked 93 yd run by Merritt on the kick off, BEARS kicked fg to win the game… :aliensmile:
Definitely a cool thing…Go BEARS Go
Raiders fan, good luck this year! Glad you guys got blabbermouth Warren Sapp, was worried the BEARS were gonna pick him up. Maybe Ricky pot head Williams will return to play for you guys, read that somewhere recentlyAugust 19, 2004 at 12:53 pm #104280
I’ve got a horrible feeling about the Stillers, but still am hopefull. Ready for the young secondary to fit in full time.
Can’t wait for real games…August 19, 2004 at 6:14 pm #104281
I can’t wait for the regular season, usually can’t get past the 1st quarter in preseason games
Tonite Eli Manning starts for the Giants against the Panthers…
BEARS vs San Fran Saturday :aliensmile:August 20, 2004 at 3:00 am #104282
I was my fathers only son, so he turned me into a lover of football, I now have become very fond of our college games here in Athens. I love college basketball also, both of the games here are so high energy.
The two professional teams that I back are, hold your laughter, Cleveland and Cincinnati. Does anyone remember back in the "70’s" you could get football helmets in like bubble gum machines at the grocery store? I collected them and when Cincinnati lost the super bowl in, gosh, I don’t know 1980 or so, I got my little helmets out of the basement and I jumped up and down on them and broke them all, I was in the 10th or 11th grade by then so I wasn’t as attached to the toy helmets but just needed some release I guess. My favorite part of a game is the fact that I can yell and yell, it is such a release. Last year while listening to the Bulldogs on the radio in my bedroom I started yelling and I scared the children, Little Juan came running to my room and said he thought some furniture had fallen on me. He was very scared. I let him know that was just one of the many gifts my father had bestowed on me. The ability to get so wrapped up in a football game that you start yelling at the top of your lungs. :slap: The smack is for myself. Oh, yeah.August 20, 2004 at 12:50 pm #104283
so horrible feelings follow horrible headlines as i return to regular newspaper reading to find Kendal Simmons out for the season. He plays right guard on the worst side of the already poor Stillers offenseive line. They did nothing to improve the O-line in the off season and that was the downfall of the team last year. Who knows, story said he is looking into a second opinion but banged up is banged up. Think the fake game is on saturday night though so i’m ready…August 20, 2004 at 7:49 pm #104284
Fingers crossed it’s not for the whole season, we’ve lost a couple for the season already…August 23, 2004 at 12:18 pm #104285
We beat San Fran on Saturday, the game was completely overshadowed by the trade of our only established receiver Marty Booker to Miami for a huge defensive pass rusher Ogunleye. Love getting a pass rusher, would have preferred to trade David Terrell & Anthony Thomas for him versus our only established pro bowl receiver…
I’ll miss Booker
Ogunleye happy, Booker bummed after big trade
By Bob LeGere Daily Herald Sports Writer
Posted Monday, August 23, 2004
While Marty Booker’s departure from the Bears was acrimonious, new Bear Adewale Ogunleye couldn’t be happier about leaving his former Miami Dolphins team.
"Everybody wants to feel like they belong," Ogunleye said, "and I can’t wait to show the Bears I appreciate their faith in me."
The Bears made Ogunleye feel wanted with $15 million in guaranteed bonus money. Booker wasn’t feeling much love, though.
"I am hurt," Booker said. "This is where I signed a long-term contract. All of a sudden, they don’t want me. I am stunned."
It’s not that the Bears didn’t want Booker, it’s that they needed a dominant pass rusher more than a go-to wide receiver.
"We said this to Marty: ‘Marty, this had nothing to do with you personally. This was in the best interests of our football team,’ÃƒÂ¦" said Bears general manager Jerry Angelo. "He was a very valued player for us, and obviously the Dolphins felt the same way."
Ogunleye promised to be a valued player for the Bears.
"I know I’m going to get better," he told WSCR 670-AM. "I will get sacks and pressure on the quarterback. That’s what I’m getting paid for."
Ogunleye recorded 15 sacks last season, the most in the AFC, but he said he’s more than a pass rusher. He’s a left end, and players on the left side generally have more run-stopping responsibilities than those on the right side, who are typically the better pass rushers.
Angelo said that’s what makes Ogunleye unique.
"Most great pass rushers do it from the right side," Angelo said. "This guy’s doing it from the left side. It’s a little more difficult to do from the left side given the fact that he’s always in the view of the quarterback. So it tells you that he has some special prowess as a pass rusher."
But Ogunleye insists he’s more than a quarterback stalker.
"For me to make an impact in Miami, I had to prove I could play the run very strongly, and that’s what I did," said the 6-foot-4, 260-pounder. "I’ve learned in the NFL you have to do that first, and then you get to pin your ears back and go after the quarterback.August 23, 2004 at 2:30 pm #104286
rambleonParticipantQuote:I was my fathers only son, so he turned me into a lover of football, I now have become very fond of our college games here in Athens.
hey, i went to see the bulldogs play once … many, many years ago … in fact it must have been early sept 1993 … the atmosphere there was really great … + i remember thinking, hey i wish i lived closer so i could come here on a regular basis … you know ? :aliensmile:August 27, 2004 at 6:06 pm #104287
BEARS vs Saints tonite @ Soldier Field… :aliensmile: :aliensmile:
Wish I could watch it, at least I can get the radio replay later…
Go BEARS GoAugust 31, 2004 at 3:22 pm #104288
We lost, it was emBEARassing, no completed passes in the 1st quarter, qb Grossman was 1-6 at the half…our 3rd down conversions…non existant Fingers crossed it was just a bad day, we play Cleveland this friday…
Clark won’t blast boastful Winslow
By David Haugh
Tribune staff reporter
August 30, 2004
In a show of tight end unity, Desmond Clark reserved judgment on bombastic Browns rookie Kellen Winslow Jr. and the boast that the player the Bears will see Friday night will revolutionize the positionÃ¢â‚¬â€September 3, 2004 at 2:22 am #104289
pre-season is over for this kid. Made it through, so far, without any major injuries, sans Kendal Simmons but Kedrick Vincient has played well. Star rook Willie Parker fumbled during the last drive ending the stillers hopes of winning thier final preseaon contest. 2-2 i believe. Right on pace for an 8-8 season. I’m hoping for better but you never know in the nfl, everyone’s a contender week one which i can’t wait for, bring on the raiders…
go stillers go!September 3, 2004 at 5:24 pm #104290
We play Cleveland tonite, Garcia is asking for trouble from our new pass rusher, O-Gun, by dismissing the Mighty BEARS…
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