I do see 99. We just differ in our expectations of how much the added offensive firepower will make a difference with a bad OL. Cutler did have time in several games. We don't see him get clobbered 15 times like in that Giants game I will always remember. I do not agree that with the line we have that Marshall and Jeffrey make no difference. I would use the fact that Marshall has gotten over 160 ypg several times. Cutler is obviously able to use Marshall behind this line to some extent. Those 160 yards per game have gone to waste. We still lose. I think using the OL as the only reason we are losing is a crutch. They are an easy target because they do suck so badly - and for so long. Anyway, my .02
Good points, BIH.
Agreed, the O-line is likely not the only culprit. Merely the one that is most easily fixed.
IMHO, the oline performance needs to bes more than simply preventing sacks. Our pitiful oline also fails to block well enough for us to consistently run the ball. Our oline makes continual mental mistakes, they get drive-killing penalties, miss key blocks, fail to pick up short yardage on 3rd downs, etc etc etc - that ultimately cost us games - which killed our 2012 season.
I'm happy we added Cutler and Marshall. Unhappy that we can't win games due to an offense that does not have a solid offensive line. An extremely bad oline even affects the defense negatively. When we fail to consistently sustain drives on offense, the defense gets overworked and can run out of gas. We've seen this.
An offensive line is not hard to build. It's a GREAT investment in that it not only improves your oline, it improves your TEAM. Your skill players are able to play to their FULL potential. You can "impose your will" on other teams and stack the wins. Not just winning against the bottom-feeders like we did this year. You are able to beat the GOOD teams.
Another neat thing about improving your oline, is that great offensive line players (not the bums we have been getting, but great offensive linemen), often play at a high level well into their 30's, even their mid to late 30's for some. So that return on your investment pays dividends for many years. You're not wasting precious draft picks. Do it once - right - and reap the bennies for many years. Yes, you do have to keep the oline solid over those years, but you're not in crisis mode annually like we are.
It ain't rocket science. But it all begins in recognizing the IMPORTANCE an offensive line plays in a teams success. It is "mission critical" to success. It's the foundation upon which the team rests IMHO. If the foundation is shaky, then the team is going to fail. Period.
That the Bears are who we thought they were when playing against Packers.
I realize I must sound like one of those old snake oil salesmen from the old west. Just try this "JABF Oline Elixer" and all our woes are gone :lol-032:
I think we are on the exact same page. The OL is of huge importance. It all really starts there, and you are limited by what you can do. We will never get too far without fixing this line. We are in 100% agreement. However, my point was that this line is not what has kept us from beating good teams. It may have been last year when Cutler could only get a quick feel (or sniff as has been documented)of the football before getting hammered. He has had enough protection to get the ball off to Marshall to the tune of over 160 per game in several games. We still lose. Speaking only for myself, I don't see the "want it drive" that I would like out there. I don't see our coaches winning the mental chess matches with opposing coaches. Granted Tice brings a toothpick to a fencing match in this regard, we have players out there that don't catch balls - whether it is lack of skill or lack of coaching, I don't care -- the coaches are responsible for that player being out there either way.
So in short, I was just saying that it is not just the OL not being able to open up holes or protect. It is more than that. And that is not to minimize the impact or need of the OL. But I really don't see a dominant OL fixing our issues like I once thought. We have other issues that need to be addressed. That is why I am for a change in coaches. I think too much of what needs to change will stay if Lovie stays here.