Sometimes a team needs a little wake-up call to remind them where their priorities lay. As far as the 2014 NFL draft is concerned, the Chicago Bears got a rather big one.
Jay Cutler couldn’t have stopped Philadelphia Eagles onslaught
A lot of experts saw it coming, like a freight train off in the distance. It was the best rushing offense in the league, at home, against the worst rushing defense. The Chicago Bears needed a lot of breaks to have a chance at beating the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night. Instead they were slapped with stark reality. It had all the makings of a trap game for the Bears. With Detroit and Green Bay losing earlier in the day, Chicago players had to have known a win would put them in the playoffs. Unfortunately such situations can often lead to a lack of focus and that is not a good recipe when the other team is tailor-made to expose your weaknesses. The Eagles took command from the start, feeding LeSean McCoy and Bryce Brown who gobbled up yards in bunches. They finished the night with a combined 248 rushing yards and three touchdowns. Nick Foles simply sat back and completed easy passes, threw two more touchdowns and no interceptions. Meanwhile Jay Cutler did not play very well on the night, but he didn’t get any help from Matt Forte on the ground. It had the feel of a situation where it wouldn’t have mattered if he posted top tier numbers. Everyone saw early on that the defense wasn’t going to stop the Eagles.
Phil Emery and Marc Trestman can’t realize their plan until defense is fixed
Despite the firestorm that is sure to come during the ensuing week, the Chicago Bears are not dead in the water. They return home for the week 17 finale with a chance to clinch the NFC North against their rival Green Bay Packers. However, one must wonder how much of a chance they have. Matt Flynn has played very well in relief of Aaron Rodgers and Eddie Lacy gashed the Bears the last time he saw them. GM Phil Emery and head coach Marc Trestman have fielded questions mostly pertaining to the situation revolving around the contract status of Cutler, but it’s become brutally clear that the priorities of the 2014 NFL draft, and indeed the entire off-season have shifted to finding every way possible to rebuild the defense. No player or position is above being shaken up. They especially need more talent in their front seven, which is the main reason they’ve struggled so mightily against the run. Obviously losing five starters throughout the season had a hand in it, but facts are facts. Jay Cutler is no longer the primary problem for Chicago. Giving up 54 points is inexcusable and something that cannot be allowed to happen if a team truly believes it has a chance at getting to a Super Bowl.