No style points, just smarter football please
Buffalo capable of giving fits to Bears' defense
10:09 PM CDT, November 4, 2010
So this is the week the Bears just run away and hide from an opponent, right? Sunday's date against the winless Bills only requires rolling out the helmets and shoulder pads for a little recreation.
That was the prevailing wisdom in Week 6 when Seattle visited Solider Field. Seahawks 23, Bears 20.
Washington was supposed to be just what the doctor ordered, too. Redskins 17, Bears 14.
Until the Bears actually do it, I don't believe they're good enough to slam dunk anybody. Not even Buffalo, which ranks last in the NFL against the run (188 ypg) and has intercepted only one pass in seven games.
I don't need style points in Toronto. I only am looking for Bears coaches to be smarter than they've been in their previous seven chances. That's not a tall order.
Mike Martz can buzz all he wants about 10 runs for 60 yards in the second half against Washington. I need much more than that. Run the ball 30 times for 150 yards and I'll shut up for a week.
Protect Jay Cutler and I'll stop referring to the Bears' offensive line as mushy. And if Cutler can move the chains on 40 percent of third down attempts, maybe even cop a couple of touchdowns from inside the 10, that would get people off of his back for a bit.
Here's the rub that nobody is talking about: Don't assume the Bears' only challenges are on offense. Buffalo is capable of giving fits to the Bears' defense.
Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for four touchdowns and almost 400 yards, while putting 34 points on the board in the Bills' overtime loss to Baltimore two weeks ago. A fluke? I don't think so. I've seen enough of the Ravens this year to know that whatever prosperity has gone to an opponent was earned.
I also remain unconvinced the Bears can stop a team that is determined to slam it at them all day. Maybe this is the week for fantasy footballers to roll dice on Fred Jackson or C.J. Spiller.
The call: Bears 24, Bills 23.
Dan McNeil hosts "The Danny Mac Show" weekdays between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. on WSCR-AM 670.
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