IDEAS: What's acceptable to illuminate on the side of Chicago skyscrapers?
This is such a tired stat, but I think it sums up the Bears 3-3 start: The Bears have won three games against opponents with losing records (Atlanta 2-4, Carolina 0-6, Minnesota 1-5) and have lost three games against opponents with winning records (New Orleans 4-2, Green Bay 6-0, Detroit 5-1). That said, big win yesterday.
But is it enough to get back into the hunt? Next week the Bears will have a huge challenge against a 3-3 Tampa Bay team. Which way will it go? Are the Bucs a losing team, a winning team? Which category do they fit in?
In the meantime, last night's victory did a lot of things to bring me back into the Bears' fold. Here they are:
- Throwing bombs (wow, what a concept)
- Running game, getting tough extra yards
- Cutler throwing blocks
- A safety
- Julius Peppers dominating
- Robbie Gould hit a 50+ yard field goal
- Roy Williams catching balls
- A late first half 2 minute offense (a field goal!!!)
- Devin Hester return for TD
That's the recipe. Here are some more random thoughts about beating the hapless Vikings:
- I love that the Bears bounced back on national TV. I was so embarrassed last week that the Bears were completely inept on Monday Night Football. Especially after last year's bombs (Giants game and NFC championship against Green Bay). So last night was a good showcase to the country that the Bears actually do know how to line up and play football.
- It was nice to see Donovan McNabb get benched. Only because the home-grown QB has killed us in the past. I loved the shot of his Mother leaving the stands after he was sacked. Awesome. And if this is it for McNabb (time for rookie Ponder), then this will be the second HOF Vikings QB whose career ended against the Bears. Nice.
- I don't know how I feel about the Aon building (or is it the building next to it?) getting cutesy and displaying "IDEAS" by lighting certain floors. I'm not sure if that's an acceptable use of the "writing words on buildings" practice. The display was for Chicago Ideas Week, which closed up on Sunday. But they knew that the Bears game would be on NBC and they illuminated the building for the prerequisite blimp shots of the skyline during commercial breaks. Hey, I'm glad your festival went well. I'm glad it's here. But you don't get the right to just write whatever you want on the building. You have a civic responsibility to keep it to shared thought, people. It's not promotion. It's to reflect an area-wide sentiment. That's why "Go Bears" or "Go Sox" or pink lights for charities and disease awareness are acceptable.
- Also, did you think that most of the country would see that and say "Oh, they must be having a festival about ideas that have a bunch of panel discussions and performances!!!" Or did they say: "Ideas? What does that mean? That's elitist and stupid. That's it. I'm voting against Obama."
- The non-Ideas panoramic shots were beautiful. And ruined by some new NBC show called Grimm that had to pop-up in front of the shot. It was like reading the Sun-Times or some random public radio web site.
- Stephen Paea sighting! The second round pick had a safety last night after just exploding through the Vikings' line. I hate to say it Chicago, but that rookie is kind of important. If he plays well, maybe the defense will too. If he goes the way of Henry Melton or other defensive linemen who just disappear after a good game, we are screwed.
- Did you see Harbaugh get into it yesterday with Lions' Head Coach Jim Schwartz? Well, I wonder where Harbaugh gets that streak? Where did he learn to play professional football and what coach did he observe? Ditka. And you know yesterday was a classic Ditka move.
- I am excited about watching the Bears/Bucs next week in London. A couple weeks back I asked WBEZ if they would spend the money to send a team to London to cover the game. I thought it would be cool to cover the team abroad but also to have a Chicagoan's experience wandering around the UK. Yeah, that's not happening. So instead I'll just watch 12 hours of BBC America.