I probably should do this as a poll but I haven't set one up so let's just do this as an open forum debate instead. Here's my $.02. This isn't quantum physics guys. I think the easiest way to approach answering the question asked is by watching games, listening to comments of players and coaches and then by applying some logic and deductive reasoning. Often what isn't said is more more important than what is so don't overlook that in coming to a conclusion. Before we get into what other have said let's get into what hasn't been said by those closest to the situation. Last fall when the Bears were struggling so badly on defense Trestman gave Mel Tucker a vote of confidence. Then he and Phil Emery gave him another when they didn't fire him but instead went out an bought him a new DL and spent our first three draft picks on defense as well. Mel Tucker has an almost entirely new DL with 3 top 20 NFL 4-3 DEs, new Safeties, a new SLB whose a former 1st round pick and a nickel LB whose a second round pick. That's as major one year overhaul of a team as I've ever seen happen around here. So in the face of all this change plus to new positions coaches to help teach the defense better to the DL and LBs for some reason the defense is still struggling with many of the same issues they did last year. (eg: giving up too much yardage on the ground, allowing big plays, not getting 3rd down stops). We can all agree on that right? So this weekend both Marc Trestman and Phil Emery came out in the media and gave Mel Tucker another big vote of confidence and said it must be the lack of talent that causing problems................What? Oh they DIDN'T say that. They haven't said anything at all have they? No vote of confidence this time. Somebody get Mel a towel here OK? Here's a simple real world example. If you hire a guy to do a job who says he has the skills to do it and then you provide him with all of the basic tools he needs to be successful and yet he's failing at the job how much longer are you gonna blame it on the tools? I'm not alone. What do others have to say? Mike Ditka can be a little crazy at times but when it comes to NFL football he's not an idiot. He's a HOF player and coach and the ONLY Bears coach to have won a SB and he didn't even run that defense but he did know it got him a ring. What's Mike got to say? Do they have enough talent? Talent is one thing. But coordination of the talent and how you play as a team is another thing. I’m not saying the players aren’t there. They’re just not coordinated, and they’re not playing well together. (Talk about throwing Mel Tucker under a bus. He's not pulling any punches is he?) Do you believe that the defense will look vastly improved over last season in Week 1? Look, you can’t turn it on and off. And you can’t rely on your offense to carry you. It puts too much pressure on them, and then they try to do things they shouldn’t do. Idealistically, you would like to say, ‘‘Hey, they’re going to be better. It’s going to be great! Everything will be fine!’’ Well, it doesn’t work that way. As much as I want it to be that way, as much as Marc wants it to be that way, it doesn’t work that way. (He doesn't exactly throw Trestman under there with him but he clearly puts him in the drivers seat of the bus and invites him to run it over Tucker a couple of times) What did David Haugh have to say in the column of his I posted today? He says it's not Marc Trestman's vaunted offense we should be concerned with (boy that's a switch) it's Mel Tuckers still unassembled defense where the problems lie with Joe D's STeams issues as the frosting on this yet unbaked cake. David Haugh After a preseason that did little to answer most pressing questions, Bears start preparation for Bills Offense promises to be special but chronic problems on defense and special teams point to up-and-down season. Game week in Chicago begins much the same way training camp opened in Bourbonnais, with the Bears facing uncertainty at safety, linebacker and on special teams. That's not the kind of continuity any NFL team seeks from one season to the next. That's running in place for a month. So it's not just me and if I spent the rest of the afternoon doing it I'm sure I could dig up at least a half dozen more articles that would express sentiments and concerns. Basically if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, has webbed feet and likes to swim in ponds then it's probably a duck and we seemed to have a matched pair named Mel and Joe.