Thanks for Nothing, Graph.

October 26, 2011

I figured tracking my fantasy football stats would help me make some good choices by end-of-season playoff time, i.e. now.  Ummm, yeah.  This graph just demonstrates how I’m definitely going to make the wrong choice this week….

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Where’s Brian?

July 28, 2009

I’m a busy boy, but three things I wanted to tell y’all about:

  1. I’m writing for a tri-city music blog, BemBang repping Chicago.  We mainly make fun of stuff.
  2. My pet project — the Football-via-Teen Drama blog Gridiron Girl (co-written by Kenny, Matt and Rob) — will be getting a weekly column spot at Third Coast Digest as we start revving up for 09/10 football season.
  3. Oh, Rob also writes a hilarious Milwaukee Brewers column for 3CD called Dear Ken Macha.  I highly recommend you check it out.

Oh Yeah.   FYI.  Brett Favre is OUT as a Viking.   Hellllloooo Mike Vick?!?!?!  That would be hilarious.


Chicago Bears: Door Open, Checkbook… Open?

February 18, 2009


Lots of moves going on over at Halas hall.  Plenty of time before I can start fretting about the Preseason, but I’ll quickly dish about Chicago Bears’ recent moves, and drops, and free agent opportunities.  Chris Curran, Kenny Bernat (of Ask Dr. Kenny) and Matt Kroll (of BellyFullofHell) also have some thoughts…

The Never-ending QB Rotation

Brian: Only 6 months left.  I’m going through serious withdrawal.  Hockey’s not helping… it’s like a expired box of methadone.  Combine coming up.  Bears have picked up NWU’s  Brett Basanez at QB… because that makes sense… career stats: 6 of 11, 56 yards with one interception. 0-1.

Does anyone like Jeff Garcia as much as I do?  No matter how good he makes a team, he always gets ditched for someother “project” QB.  Why 49ers, Browns, Lions and Bucs have all dropped him, I have no idea.

Curran: I thought he did well this year, i think his problem is that he is older and he is not an amazing QB.  So teams are allways going to take a chance on the possible upgrade.  he will still play well when given a chance.

the bears are just horrible with their QB choices. they get this guy from NWU and the back up QB from the Panthers?  what they hell are they going for guys with the least actual experience?  Qualifications: Nice Smile all others need not apply.

Kenny: I have basically given up on the Bears offseason. It’s more frustrating than the regular season. All this talk is about a new quarterback is bullshit. The Bears cannot, CANNOT evaluate the position at all. What they should really be doing is signing receivers left and right. But they won’t. They will just draft somebody that will probably get hurt.

At this point Jeff Garcia is probably the only decent BACKUP left. Let’s face it, he is not a championship quarterback. Other than that, he is an aging hot head that reminds me of Jeff Kent.

Bitter? The Bears have given me no choice. They hate their fans.

Waive Goodbye & Free Agents

Kenny: Today’s rumor Mill has the Bears looking at Chris Simms and Fred Taylor.

Bye bye Mike Brown and John Tait.

Brian: Hmmmm.

I don’t care how many QBs they sign so long as one of them shows up to play.

Simms looked pretty deece when he started for the Bucs a few years ago but, apparently, they got bored of him or something.  Also, didn’t Simms Sr. get pissed when a commentator called Chris “soft”.

Mike Brown, bless his heart, can’t do a season anymore. What scares me is Craig Steltz trying to make tackles in his place… did you see him get buldozed last year?

Oh yeah… bye bye Booker.   And 2/5ths of depleted Offensive Lin…

Fred Tayor would be a KILLER pick up.  A nice one-two with Forte who got really effed up after a full season with no legitimate backup.

Kenny: Simms hurt his spleen really bad. I think he ruptured it. The fact that people were giving him a hard time was probably because they were bonehead NFL fans.

I agree having Taylor as the second running back would be a much needed improvement. Just gotta form an O-LINE, which the Bears need to solve to give Orton more success this year.

Just Trade Haugh

Awesome Image Courtesy of Angy Orange

Brian: Urlacher for Boldin?

Kenny: I went off [ ] when I read that. David Haugh might be one of the wost sports writers behind Jay Marriotti. He always comes up with these theories that don’t have any merit behind them. Last year, he wanted them to trade Urlacher for Brett Favre which would have been so idiotic. When I went to Holy Cross, Haugh was a writer for the South Bend Tribune, and wrote about Notre Dame as if he made up how they were doing. The fact that he is our beat writer for the Bears is embarrassing. I invite everyone to boycott his article.

Brian: Haugh always seems to say whatever will make people talk — regardless of if it makes any sense at all.  That’s not journalism.

Kenny: I know. It’s kinda sad. I would think writing for a professional football team would be quite an opportunity and a privilege.

Dog Days

fuuuuuuuuuck no.  I will become a Browns fan if this happens…. Bears Looking At QB Options, Including…Michael Vick?

Kenny: Yeah, Vick as a Bear would be complete poison. The good news is, I don’t think it will happen. If you look at other papers across the nation, his name is being brought up as well as fodder for dying newspapers. What’s also interesting is, since Vick went to prison there hasn’t been any running quarterbacks. (And really I have always thought that their success is very limited.) Remember how much McNabb used to run? That changed when they groomed him into relying on his arm. Vince Young will be in that transition too. So if Michael “Pass efficiency FAIL” Vick is thinking about entering the league again, he might consider adjusting his game, because football evolves in some way every 5-10 years.

Brian: If Virginia McCaskey refuses to endorse cheerleaders, there’s no way she’ll allow them to pick up Vick.

Vick will wind up on the Cowboys or the Bengals… they all do.

Matt: Yeah this would be a huge mistake. Running quarterbacks were a fad; just like prison is a fad. Wait…


Vikings and Bears NFC North Run-off

December 9, 2008

I’m not going to waste time talking about the Bears and Vikes games last week, but I AM going to focus on what happens now — with three games left apiece.

So far, all we know is that the Bears D is not good when playing other good teams.  They only appear to be good when playing games they’re expected to win.  It’s no coincidence their recent wins have been against the lousiest of the league — Jacksonville, Detroit, St. Louis — they remind me of a pouty Rec League group that plays in the lower levels just to feel good about themselves.

Lance Briggs said earlier this year that when the Bears defense wanted to play well they would play well.  Hmmm.  Well, sidestepping the most obvious question, (“As a professional athlete player, when do you NOT want to play well?”) question #2 is, “Do you find it odd that in games the defense SHOULD have been amped up, you actually played worse?”  Failures such as:

  • A chance to beat an undefeated Titans team.
  • A chance to claim first place in the NFC North by beating the division rival Packers at Lambeau.
  • A change to reclaim first place in the NFC by beating the Vikings in prime time

Were they not pumped up about these games?

THESE are the games you have to win, THESE are the games you win if you deserve to be the Division Champs — Tough games, DIVISION games.   It’s because the Bears can’t win to save their own hides that having to root against the Vikings is just maddening. 

If the Bears won games they were supposed to, we shouldn’t have to watch the scoreboard to see if Detroit is going to beat them (Or Arizona, or Atlanta, or New York) in the next few weeks.  Larry Mayer’s ChicagoBears.com Chalk Talk made it painfully clear what needs to happen for the Bears to make the playoffs:

There are two ways for the Bears to win the NFC North: They go 2-1 and the Vikings go 0-3, or  the Bears go 3-0 and the Vikings lose at least two of their final three games. Minnesota can win the division with two victories regardless of what the Bears do.

So, if I must, here’s who they both play in weeks 15, 16 & 17.

  • Vikes (8-5): Arizona* (8-5), Atlanta** (8-5), New York* (11-2)
  • —  combined record (27-12) .692
  • Bears (7-6): New Orleans** (7-6), Green Bay (5-8), Houston (6-7)
  •  — combined record (18-21) .462

(*Clinched Playoff Birth, **Wild Card Race)

So,  at first blush, The Vikings have a more difficult schedule. But you have to consider both Arizona and especially New York have nothing left to play for, so their only real difficult game is Atlanta.  Based on Mayer’s comments, I find it very unlikely that Minnesota — with the playoffs on the line, will manage to lose to the Cards and Giants; both disinterested teams.

Chicago, though their win% looks favorable, has to first play a New Orleans team with a matching record, healthy Reggie Bush, and a serious bone to pick with two losses in the last two years against the Bears — one a NFC Divisional Playoff upset.  Next up, Green Bay — historic rivals who, no doubt, would love to spoil a Bear playoff run.  Finally, you have a Houston team which the Bears should not even THINK about until they have beat both Green Bay and New Orleans and the Vikings have lost to Atlanta.

So… speculate all you want, they don’t deserve to win the division.  Why?  Because they’ve had TWO chances to do so within a month, and they’ve failed.  WHY DO WE WANT TO MAKE THE PLAYOFFS ANYWAY?

To get blasted by whomever we play?  To give the Bears Franchise an excuse not to make any major shake-ups in the off season? To get a higher draft pick?  Seriously, why?


Mauritania: Soccer, Power Outages, and Holidays

November 12, 2008

“if you meet the right people and dont get too discouraged you can actually do things here”

Such are the encouraging words from Adam volunteering in Mauritania. It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything from Adam — part of this might have to do with them being without power for the last 9 days. Ouch. Overall, everything seems to be going well. Dr Adam has some ideas on HIV/AIDS awareness that links into youth soccer programs which would be really cool, as I know Adam is a big soccer (aka “football” for the rest of the world) fan.

Perhaps, if the UNICEF/FIFA thing doesn’t work out, we could try to donate t-shirts and soccer equipment for him. That would be really cool.

Otherwise, it sounds like he’s making Holiday plans like the rest of us, some of which focuses on drinking (like the rest of us).

Check out all of Adam’s Peace Corp photos here: http://picasaweb.google.com/adam.fiebs

The Full letter:
hello!
well it has been a bit since i have dropped a line. it has been a bit busy around here as of late. aside from visiting some parts of mauritania i have yet to visit i have made some strides on the work front. mainly ideas mostly and a lot A LOT of talking about them with members of the community. among them organizing a community soccer tournament for kids on world aids day, dec. 1, and educating them about hiv/aids. i am trying to do this in conjunction with UNICEF and FIFA which would be awesome because they can donate sports equipment and the like as well as t shirts etc etc. UNICEF has this thing called sports in a box which donates a ton of equipment to third world countries needing them. so cross your fingers and all will be a success. aside from that talking about a traveling vaccination program for children in more rural sites and maybe something on clean birthing kits. but more details to follow.
 
 my language is getting better a little bit each day so i dont make a fool of myself nearly as much as i did when i first arrived. but i feel it is part of the territory as a peace corps volunteer. aside from that, all is great! only frustrating part is trying to explain that you are a volunteer and that no, you wont be bringing any money into the place. but if you meet the right people and dont get too discouraged you can actually do things here. again, ask me this question in 6 or 8 months and i could be less or more enthusiastic on this point.
 
but in all. things are good. i am looking forward to going to nouakchott for xmas and actually having a beer!!! whoo! and then saint louis in senegal for new years which i hear is eden among peace corps mauritania volunteers. those senegal and mali volunteers have it good 😉
 
i will try to post new photos soon. our electricity has been out for the last 9 days and it came on for 3 hours last night. enough time to charge a computer. hope all is well and thanks to everyone who has sent me packages! they are great!
 
adam fiebs

Squibgate

October 14, 2008

I’ll be brief.  In the final quarter of an otherwise yawn-fest of a game, the Atlanta Falcons beat the Chicago Bears with a field goal with 1-second left after Kyle Orton led the Bears in multiple late-quarter drives.  As a Bears fan, I will be succinct, but I must ask:

  1. Why a squib vs a regular kickoff?  Is Robbie Gould a good squib kicker — it didn’t look that way. 
  2. Are we supposed to have the best Special Teams coverage in the league?  Isn’t a game with 11 seconds left a time to expect them to perform.
  3. Was there a fear of avoiding a real kickoff because of what happened against the Vikings last year, when Adrian Peterson returned a kickoff into Bears territory that lead a Minnesota 3-point victory?
  4. Why stick to the Cover-2 when a short pass or running the ball would’ve ended the game?
  5. How do you allow a reciever to get even CLOSE to a sideline when the team has no timeouts with 6 seconds left?
  6. With all this recent referee criticsm, isn’t it bullshit that Atlanta’s game clock operator gave their offense a 1-sec or so cushion on the secon-to-last snap? (The same second that allowed Elam to kick the winning field goal).  A similar question was fielded in Larry Mayer’s Bears Q&A “Chalk Talk” yesterday:

Can the Bears file a formal protest of Sunday’s loss based on the clock operation in the Georgia Dome? It appeared that the clock conveniently started late on both on the Bears’ squib kickoff and on Atlanta’s 26-yard pass play that set up the field goal.

Will S.
Chicago

Well, whatever.  They say good teams find a way to win — what does that say about a Bears team whose every loss has been 3 points or less? I’m going crazy just thinking about this.  Also note: Jason Elam blew a gimmie field goal earlier in the quarter, and we blew a 4th and goal attempt so… we can’t complain, the Bears had plenty of chances to score and shouldn’t have allowed it to come down to the last second.

Relive the terror (or the glory if you’re reading this in Atlanta / Green Bay).
 


Orton to Seahawks Defense: “Thanks”

August 18, 2008

Well, it’s official, the Chicago Bears website has named Kyle Orton the Bears starting QB for their opening game against the Colts on September 7th.

 

Although it was obvious that Orton was leading the competition, it was by a fairly slim margin.  As ChicagoBears.com reported:

…Orton slightly outperformed Grossman in two preseason games, compiling a better completion percentage (63.2-56.5), yards per attempt average (5.21-5.13) and passer rating (76.4-66.9) while connecting on 12 of 19 passes for 99 yards. Grossman has completed 13 of 23 passes for 118 yards.

Not only are those stats not that great for a starting QB in preseason, but Orton’s not really that far ahead of Grossman — especially considering Grossman has more total yards and less turnovers than Orton.  Grossman’s only turnover of the preseason came from being blindsided on a Seattle blitz on Saturday.  That said, there’s been WEEKS of practice that must have informed the Bears Coaching Staff decicion.

It was obvious that the two-minute drill that Orton pulled off at the end of the first half against Seattle was impressive, but there’s a few things that bother me. 

Firstly, getting a field goal out of a two-minute drill is not always the most difficult thing to pull off.  If you’re at the end of a (Preseason) half — it’s possible the defense was playing more prevent-style as the clock ticked away, allowing for Orton to move the ball up the field, but not allow for a touchdown (which you’ll note, is exactly what happened, as a bomb from Orton to Hester was knocked down).

 

Secondly, the Seahawks blitzed WAY TOO MUCH for a preseason game.  Although there’s no rules against it, it is NOT customary to send that many guys at the quarterback in a game that doesn’t even count.  How are you supposed to judge Grossman’s sub-par performance if he was fighting off rushes that the Chicago o-line may not have even been prepared for?

I’m definitely not the only one that felt this way.  Reporting for ESPN NFC West page, Mike Sando said the same thing…

The Seahawks blitzed far more than usual for an exhibition game …  Rex Grossman and Kyle Orton have not looked good tonight, but it’s tough to function in the preseason when the opposing defense is sending three blitzers at a time. It’s not like the Bears were game-planning for it.

The unrelenting blitzes makes me wonder, was Seattle deliberately trying to mess up our QB controversy?  Is this some weird pay-back for a 2-year old playoff loss that I’ve forgotten about until now?  Those questions tend to blame Seattle for playing good football, so my other question would have to be directed towards Bears Offensive Coordinator Ron Turner, who commented that Seattle blitzing was…

…something we have to deal with. We expected it. We anticipated it. They didn’t come with that much pressure last week, but when they played us last year they did. We anticipated that we would see that much pressure. It’s something you have to handle. When a team brings pressure like that you have to look at it as an opportunity to make a play. We have handled it well and we will handle it well.

Handled it well?  Um, no.  So, question one: Because there is a QB contest going on, were you unwilling to change the offensive gameplan despite the unrelenting blitzes?  It would make sense to start running draws, screens, quick slants etc, to nullify the blitz, but those sort of plays don’t exactly showcase what Rex would need to do to impress anyone.

Ah well.  Preseason Week 3 means Orton will get nearly two-thirds of the game to showcase what he can do, and is there a better confidence-building team than the lowly Niners?  Probably not.