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Bears Mon Sep 21 2009

Footballic Ramblings: Cutler Delivers in Bears Home Opener

Jay Cutler after suffering the slings and arrows of ridiculous bad-timing, re: "having the worst statistical game of your career occur at the hands of your arch-rival," decided to take care of business on Sunday like his name was Randy Bachman. Cutler, as Footballic Ramblings predicted 1) completely got back on track and was the reliable, cannon-armed Cutler and not the "Rex in Jay's Clothing" we all saw at Lambeau last weekend; and 2) was unfazed when staring down the many-fanged and blood-craving Steelers defense. Jay-Bot 5000 completed dagger after dagger to a multitude of receivers (in all, seven different receivers hooked up with Cutler) as he steadily dissected the Steelers defense and at the same time got his inner-Gore-Tex on (see, he was weather-proof against the slogging mud and rain at Soldier Field).

Amongst the seven receivers Cutler found none was more exhilarating to see get in on the action than Johnny Knox, as the rookie, in his sceond game as a pro, was targeted a team-high 9 times and reeled in 6 of those passes for a team-high 70 yards and one touchdown, with the TD pass knotting things up halfway through the fourth quarter. Knox, considered an after-thought by many Bears pundits following the April draft, has blossomed into an (even) speedier complement to Devin Hester and if his progress continues should force defensive coordinators to reconsider how they'll defend the Bears aerial attack. Additionally, if Knox's season continues along such an encouraging pace the Ursas will have a legit Rookie of the Year contender (see, Forte, Matt last season).

Speaking of Forte, Chicago's running game was penned up by the Steelers all day long and considering how few rush attempts the Bears had, one has to think that the coaching staff knew that Pittsburgh was not going to allow any rushing whatsoever and the coaches committed to letting Cutler take care of the game, which is an astounding thought! Chicago's coaching staff decided to place the game in the hands of a quarterback, this has never happened in the City of Broad Shoulders...EVER. That's what Cutler brings though: reliable and proven talent and utter capability when it comes to not screwing things up, and in fact, making things way better: 2 TDs, 236 yards, 0 interceptions. Yes, even the haters will be quiet for a week, Jay-Bot.

Defensively, the Bears line came alive and decided to be a disruptive force like it was 2006 all over again. Roethlisberger --who, admittedly, is a big and slow moving object-- was the harbored American aircraft carrier to the Bears many, many kamikaze fighters who knocked Big Ben down five times, sacked him twice and harried him throughout the game. The Steelers running game was just as anemic as Chicago's on even more attempts, leaving all of us to understand why on a rainy day the game evolved into a gunslinging duel and also why a mere 31 points were scored. Advantage, Mother Nature.

Triage, Still Triage!

If losing Brian Urlacher for the season last week wasn't enough the Bears defense took another hit on Sunday when Alex Brown went down with what is being dubbed a "mild ankle sprain," and Brown, for one, isn't too worried about it.

 

Jason Clinkscales / September 22, 2009 7:04 PM

I can imagine that its success or failure is constantly debated in the area, but what will make the Hester-as-WR conversion work and what will make it fail? Is it strictly about Cutler or is there something more that we don't hear about much nationally?

Brian Lauvray / September 23, 2009 2:33 PM

Hey Jason! With Hester the real issue is going to be

a) his capability to impress on Cutler that he can be a consistent route-runner and catcher. Hester has a bit of a rep (warranted or not) that he can't make the catch, see: Ginn, Ted.

and b) Hester also has the rep (again warranted or not) of being something of a blockhead. That dude can only run really fast and elude but not work in an offense, which is weird because when he's at his best his improv should translate to a downfield receiver's needs...weird.

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