How much of a turnaround should we realistically expect in 2015?

Discussion in 'Front Page News' started by JustAnotherBearsFan99, Mar 20, 2015.

  1. JustAnotherBearsFan99

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    The key word here is "realistically" and not what we "hope" happens. Actually, we should improve this year significantly even if that isn't reflected by a big improvement in the win column this year. Here are a few key stats regarding last season that we should be able to improve upon:

    1. The defense gave up historically high scores of 50+ point curb stompings. I don't see that happening this year....I really don't.

    2. The defense last year was ranked 31st as far as points allowed per game. Only the Oakland Raiders defense was worse than us in this category. We allowed 27.6 points per game (LINK).

    3, The offense scored less than 20 points per game - 19.0 (LINK). That ranked us in the lower-10 of the NFL teams. By comparison, Green Bay led the league in offense with an average score of 30.4 points per game. The Patriots were at 29.2. Ultimately if we want to play with the big boys we need to be scoring a lot more points than 19 per game. But I think this is an area we could improve upon if we could get an NFL-quality OL in place here in Chicago. Not a cobbled together piece of crap like we now have with Garza, Mills & Turnstile Bushrod.

    4. Two other things come to mind where we could significantly improve this year. Even with Cutler here again, I don't see us turning the ball over at such an alarming (league leading) rate. I think the play calling can help us here immensely. Take the ball out of Cutler's hands and run the ball more consistently. If we would seriously upgrade the OL and be capable of solid run-blocking, then this is definitely an area we can improve upon THIS year. The play calling should be better because I can't imagine another set of coaches being as bad as what we had last year. So the two things here (play calling in general, and running the ball more) should help the offense climb out of that bottom-10 scoring category.

    I'm thinking we may not see a big positive swing in the number of wins this year. But the games should be more competitive and less embarrassing to watch. I'm thinking a 5 to 7 win season would be a reasonable expectation, and another relatively high draft pick next year. Maybe that will be good for us if we want to pick a QB out of what should be a better QB class in 2016.

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  2. a_miljan

    a_miljan Pro-Bowler

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    That is exactly my thinking and I would be perfectly content with it, and the year after that a few wins more, lets say 8 or 9
     
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  3. JustAnotherBearsFan99

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    I could certainly see the record being better than a 5 to 7 win season. And we could have a quick turnaround (hey, in the NFL anything is possible).

    But I don't expect that to happen.

    Not when I look at that roster. We will certainly add a few more FA's but it's not like we're adding stud top-tier players at this point. And we won't have more than 1 true impact player added in the draft.....and that's assuming we don't pull a "McClellin" and whiff on the pick. Sure, we'll have a few more players added who (hopefully) will be decent (not just the 1st round pick but maybe in rounds 2 and 3). But it's not like the draft brings in a bunch of studs ready to start day-1. That isn't happening.
     
  4. JustAnotherBearsFan99

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    Now that we've added some decent FA's, what do you guys think? What do you realistically see our record as being this year? What do you expect the minimum number of wins to be this season?
     
  5. AAJ

    AAJ Pro-Bowler

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    Since we added

    McPhee, Royal, Rolle, McDonald and Jenkins. It should spice up the defense. It would drastically improve the defense if we get Danny Shelton or Vic Beasley.....Im making a prediction 10-6for the Bears this season. And they'll be top 15 in overall defense. If we draft Shelton I expect him to have a season like Aaron Donald did, If we draft Vic Beasley, I expect him to have a season like a Aldon Smith or Von Miller.
     
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  6. Bearsinhouston

    Bearsinhouston Assistant Head Coach
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    Honestly, who are the decent FAs other than McPhee? Do you think they will make a difference? I mean more than what we already have? I think there is an incremental difference, but not sure that we are playoff ready. We still have to get past GB. Not sure we did that. And I wasn't really expecting that to happen in the first year.

    I just want to see a team that plays hard, is in the game, moves the ball, and is not dysfunctional. If we have that, and we draft well, we have something to build on.
     
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  7. JustAnotherBearsFan99

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    I agree with you that we haven't exactly transformed the roster, but rather we have begun the process of upgrading it. But we do have a decent beginning, I think anyway. I realize it's early to judge the final roster at this point. I think a 5 to 7 win season would be realistic to expect. I'd be pretty sad if we won fewer than 5 games this first year. And if we won more than 7 games (certainly possible) then I'll be ecstatic. I also look forward to a team that is not dysfunctional. It was pretty embarrassing to read all the tabloid type stuff last year while Trestman proclaimed "the practices are going well" and "the locker room is in a good place" -- when in reality the locker room was totally out of control and while I appreciate that Marc liked his practice sessions, it would have been nice to not be getting 50+ point curb stompings in the games.
     
  8. B-ell-y-iot

    B-ell-y-iot Pro-Bowler
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    I think somewhere between 6-10 and 8-8 would be acceptable. In addition to a rebuild we have a pretty strong schedule.

    More than anything I want to see some balance on offense and some aggressiveness on defense.
     
    #8 B-ell-y-iot, Apr 5, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2015
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  9. Bretts Daddy

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    I would do cartwheels if we went 8-8 but I honestly expect maybe a 6 or 7 win season is more realistic. Look, we're a team that's in re-build mode (I know there are some people who will strongly disagree with this assessment but the writing is pretty much on the wall for all to see) and I don't expect a winning season this year or next and that's how it should be! The last thing we need is to sign a bunch of high priced free agents so that we can make the playoffs but be a 1 and done participant, this would just perpetuate the mediocrity which would get the Bears nowhere. A rebuild will allow coach Fox and GM Pace to get rid of the trash and build the team in their vision with their type of players. This will probably take 2-3 years before we really start to see the dividends pay off but once they do I think us Bears fans will be happy as we should have a consistently successful team that is a perennial playoff participant and have a legit shot at a Super Bowl for years to come. If this is the fruition of the labors of Pace/Fox than I'm okay with us having losing records the next couple of seasons as long as we're competitive as we need a few years worth of high draft picks so we can infuse this team with some nice young impact players that can become cornerstones for years to come!
     
  10. Blue Horse-shoe

    Blue Horse-shoe Pro-Bowler

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    Realistically - most 1st rd draft picks don't usually have a great impact on overall team play . Sometimes yes , most times no ( which is why I don't get too excited really ) .

    I think w the FA's we've added though + the new actual NFL caliber coaches , 8-8 is likely and 10-6 is possible w a little luck .
     
  11. Bretts Daddy

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    The thing is the only free agent worth getting excited about is McPhee, Rolle would have been a good signing like 3 or 4 years ago but he's a 32 year old safety in the twilight of his career. The rest of the horde of 1-year wonders that Pace signed are stop-gap mostly and very few will be part of the Bears future. I think he signed a bunch of low-end free agents and threw them against the wall and is hoping some stick. Granted I'm glad he didn't go out and overpay for free agents because this team is in rebuild mode but I would have liked to seen a couple more free agents of significance that were young, talented and could have been a big part of the Bears future!
     
  12. Blue Horse-shoe

    Blue Horse-shoe Pro-Bowler

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    Maybe - but Pace is prob just waiting . When he has a better handle on this team , say in a couple yrs , I'd expect him to try and make a bigger splash .
     
  13. soulman

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    After getting a gander at that schedule and especially the first three games I'd say we're starting a little behind the old 8 ball there. September's gonna be a tough month to come out on to of.

    Realistically we're probably at least an 8-8 team because I expect more success later in the season but wow. That could easily be an 0-3 start we'd have to bounce back from. On the other hand if we manage to get through it with a win or two there maybe we end up 9-7 or 10-6 but that's probably the best we can hope for the way it looks now.
     
  14. soulman

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    True but all of those guys were recent starters for their last teams and some of them aren't over the hill either so there's a real good chance they'll start here and the best will earn extensions. Rolle was a need signing until we find a younger FS because we badly needed a QB type guy to lead in that defensive backfield and despite his age he's gonna do that part very well.

    From what I can see Pace has a two pronged approach to getting the team restocked as quickly as he can without blowing big money on a ton of first tier FAs every year. That hasn't worked very well for us and we're not alone in that regard. He'll continue to sign younger FAs coming off their rookie deals or those who aren't high dollar guys to one year deals and keep the best of them on with longer term deals. He'll also be drafting to add youth and looking for impact starters there. In both cases he's actually building from within.

    The aging FAs are simply filling higher needs while he waits to find younger guys this coaching staff can develop. It's at least a two year deal from here to get it even close to where it needs to be. If he has a good draft and at least a few of his younger FA signings stick next year he's half way there. Then he needs one more year of FA and another draft to replace the rest of the older guys and if it works he has his team ready to make a run again.

    So far he seems to have a pretty good handle on it. He still has some cap space available for this summer and next year he should have a boatload full of cap space to use on extensions and new signings.
     
  15. Bretts Daddy

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    Just because they were starters for their former teams doesn't necessarily mean they are good, it just means their former teams didn't have any better options. Like I said I'm glad Pace didn't foolishly overspend like Emery did but at the same time I would have liked to seen him sign Rahim Moore...maybe Terrance Knighton (he only signed a 1 year deal too) and Stefan Wisneiwski...all younger players that could have been big parts of the Bears future. I totally agree that this transformation/rebuild process will take at least 2 years and I totally accept that, the last thing we need is a rushed product just to try and get us into the playoffs again and get bounced the 1st round...that would just keep the Bears stuck in mediocrityville which is on the road to nowhere, I was mainly commenting to the OP who asked how he thought they'd do this year and a reply from another member who thought they are close to playoff contention...I just don't see that, there are too many holes left to fill...especially on defense and most of the free agents we signed were complimentary role players and not star caliber starters and the 2nd best free agent we signed (McDonald) is one felony away from being suspended from the league for a long time. I just don't want people to get too excited yet and get ahead of themselves and proclaim the Bears rebuild done after just one off-season removed from one of the worst seasons in recent team history. Mr. Pace does need to hit a few home ruins in this draft...especially with the #7 overall pick, have another successful free agent season next year and then hit a few more home runs in next years draft too before this Bears team will be on the road to perennial success!!!
     
  16. Bretts Daddy

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    I completely agree with that! Once he gets his bearings and this truly becomes his team with his stamp on it he'll feel more comfortable being more bold and aggressive in free agency.
     
  17. Bretts Daddy

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    I think you're expectations are a little high. This team is going through a major overhaul in not only personnel (including both players and coaches) but entire offensive and defensive philosophies/schemes...this team will definitely take at least a year to gel and considering the schedule we could easily be 0-4 to start the season so realistically I think a 6-10 record would be a successful campaign this year and maybe 8-8 next year.
     
  18. soulman

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    It's a matter of opinion BD. I have a lot of faith in John Fox as a HC and in the staff he's assembled. I saw what he was able to do here in Denver with a team I feel had even less talent on tap than the Bears do now when he took over. I don't see Fox and his staff being guys that would be happy with a 6-10 season in 2015 and an 8-8 season to follow.

    No one is gonna know for sure what to expect until we see the new version of this team play some football. As Fox likes to say about his players, we need to see them "on the grass" and then we'll have a better feel for how well they play in these new systems. Current HCs aren't given the luxury of taking three or four years to turn a team around. It needs to be done sooner than that.

    I have no doubts they'll have some rough sledding against better teams whose schemes have been in place longer but look what Bruce Arians was able to do with that mess in AZ. They could fall short of 8-8 this year but they may also do marginally better but give or take I'll stand by 8-8 as a guesstimate.
     
  19. Bretts Daddy

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    I hope you're right soulman but I just don't see it...it's too fast after such a miserable season and a team who's talent level is nil on the defensive side of the ball. I guess I'd like to set my sights low and be pleasantly surprised if they do better than originally expected.
     
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  20. soulman

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    That's probably an easier way to go as far as keeping ones blood pressure under control BD. LOL

    I'm working off of two assumption as far as that D is concerned. One is that the picks Emery made aren't all that bad and that no one could have played well under the direction of a DC like Tucker. Either his scheme plain old fashioned sucked or he wasn't able to communicate the assignments well enough for players to understand how to play the scheme correctly. Half the time the pre-snap scramble to align properly looked like a fricking Chinese Fire Drill.

    The second is that with the strategic additions Pace has made and Fangio's talent for making great lemonade out of average lemons he'll come up with a scheme and game plans that will work if ony to confuse the other guys enough to keep the Bears in the game. That seems to be one of fthe advantages of his scheme. It has a lot of moving parts and so it's hard to prepare and arrange blocking schemes for. Now the only question is does he have the right guys to execute it well.
     

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