Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game

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Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:16 pm
  • Just after Brandon Marshall somehow hauled in that unbelievable 56 yard completion near the end of regulation, my dad turned to me and said "well, if Seattle misses the playoffs, this is the play we'll look back on." Of course, Seattle could look back at a lot of plays this season (I'll spare you the recap) and wonder. He was right though. As tough as the Stafford comeback was, as tough as the endings in Arizona and Miami were, what Chicago did in the final 20 seconds of regulation was essentially unprecedented. The NFL was stunned when Atlanta pulled a similar play to beat Carolina, but that drive began with 45 seconds on the clock. Chicago had just 20.

    And if Seattle had lost in overtime, that's all we'd be talking about. It was the perfect exclamation point on a growing theme in recent weeks: that Seattle's defense is more of a cause for concern than the offense is. Jay Cutler is one of the most sacked QBs in the NFL. He was not sacked today and was barely touched. The secondary again played too much zone defense and allowed Brandon Marshall to embarrass them on numerous occasions.

    But even saying that, if Seattle had lost- I would have pulled the "officiating sucked" card. Some people wouldn't want to hear it- after all Seattle's defense did almost everything they could to lose this game. I don't like blaming the officials, in fact I go out of my way to point them out when they have a solid outing. But today was just awful. Not just awful, but one sided, with all the terrible calls going against Seattle and often at critical times.

    First, there was the Lynch fumble on a play where barring video game physics he was almost certainly down and the play had stopped. Additionally, if the refs had blown the whistle like they should have (Lynch had clearly been stopped before the ball came out), it's not a lost fumble. That fumble swung a promising Seahawks drive and helped turn it into 7 points for Chicago.

    Then there was the illegal block on a punt called against Seattle that was actually a facemask by Chicago. It was one of the worst calls I've seen since the Hasselbeck "block below the waist" in the Superbowl. Now making a horrible call that results in 5, 10, or 15 yards is one thing, but that play was basically a 25 yard swing in Chicago's favor.

    Then there was Chicago's other TD drive, which would have been a 3 and out from inside their own 10 if not for the most ticky tack hands to the face call I've ever seen. If they had called it "hand to the side of the helmet", then I might have found it more agreeable. That drive was later extended by a dubious "late hit" by Alan Branch where Branch clearly crossed over the point of no return before Cutler began his slide. Further, Branch's contact with Cutler was not harsh in the least. What really infuriated me though was a little later in the game where Wilson got clocked doing the same slide from a blatant illegal hit, and yet the refs just looked at each other and shrugged.

    There was also a key play that was wiped about by an Okung hold. The hold was legit, but on that same play Wilson was nailed by a blatant late hit that went uncalled. If my understanding of the rules is correct, a personal foul 15 yard penalty does not offset a 10 yard penalty, it over-rides it. So that was a huge blown call as well that helped out Chicago tremendously.

    Then to top it all off, you had the Edwards TD reversal, which I think was actually the right call. But if I wanted to put my lawyer hat on, I could argue that there wasn't quite enough evidence to overturn. The most decisive angle looked like it was 200 feet away and wasn't exactly in HD. It was the right call, so I won't rib the refs for it, but it was just one of many examples where the refs made a controversial or incorrect decision that badly hurt the Seahawks. It seemed like those awful calls only went against Seattle all game long.

    Today Seattle faced a great defense with a good QB and a great WR. They faced a team with an 8-3 record that is in contention for a bye. This game was on the road at 10am. And during this game the defense played poorly and the NFL went to WWE referees. Yet despite all those things, Seattle still somehow won the game, for one reason and one reason only.

    Russell Wilson.

    Funny enough, his 105 passer rating today was the lowest he's had in over a month, but I'd argue this was Wilson's best game yet. Today he tied his career high for passing yards and set a new career high for rushing yards. He even had more rushing yards and more rushing 1st downs today than he had in any of his preseason games. Seattle was over 50% on 3rd downs and was 1/1 on (a critical) 4th down. And that was almost entirely on Wilson. He pretty much put the team on his back today, against a very good team that was at home and catching breaks left and right. He won the game for us. Twice. Everyone talks about how composed Wilson is for a rookie. Maybe they should start omitting the final three words from that statement.

    What an emotional game. What a bizarre ending. And watching how it unfolded under Wilson in the final two drives, I couldn't help but feel that I was watching a future Superbowl champion QB.

    A few other thoughts:

    -On numerous occasions this year John Moffitt has shown himself to be a very good seal blocker on running plays in the red zone. Lynch's TD run was almost entirely thanks to a great seal block by #74.

    -James Carpenter got owned by Julius Peppers in the first quarter. It's not often you see a 320+ offensive lineman get pancaked by a DE.

    -Overall this was a good game by our O-line. Lynch was productive but I also feel that he might have left some yards on the field today. Seattle's line got a great push all game long. The pass protection was just average, but against Chicago in Chicago, I'll take it.

    -For all the negative attention Irvin gets, I feel he's more consistent this season than Clemons. At least Irvin will get you a few pressures every game. Clemons was invisible today. That said, Irvin got some looks early in this game at LEO with Clemons off the field, and Irvin was just as invisible from the LEO spot as Clemons was.

    -All season long, Jeremy Lane has been really good at downing punts inside the 10.

    -Brandon Browner had brutal game. Seattle caught some lucky breaks of their own- one of them being a sure fire deep TD that was dropped. Browner was burned badly on the play. He struggled in pretty much every aspect today. Earl Thomas missed a key tackle on Cutler and didn't play deep coverage well. Sherman failed in his quest to stop Marshall. Really, only Chancellor had a solid game of the back four, which is pretty much the opposite of what's happened most of this season. Did Walter Thurmond play? I don't remember seeing him.

    -Chicago's OC should get slapped for some of the decisions he made in the 2nd half. In the first half Chicago's line was giving protection, Cutler was playing very well and Marshall looked unstoppable. Yet for whatever reason the Bears went run heavy in the 2nd half which basically took the ball out of the hands of their biggest playmakers. They also had a terrible draw playcall on 3rd and 12 that fooled nobody. I mean, I know Seattle's 3rd and long defense is bad, but it's not THAT bad.

    -It was nice to see that the 3rd and short quick hits to Real Rob are still really hard to stop.

    -We got Tim Ryan again. At this rate he's going to cover the Seahawks almost as much as Steve Raible does.

    -Russell Wilson, to the best of my knowledge, was never a read option QB in college. At NC State they ran a WCO, and at Wisconsin they ran an offense with pro-style elements. I am impressed then with how quickly he was taken to the read option wrinkle that Carroll has introduced in recent weeks. As said by Ryan on the broadcast, Carroll has apparently been watching film on RG3's rookie season and has been copying some of the same ideas for Wilson. So far at least, those efforts have paid off. Let it not be said that Pete doesn't know anything about offense.

    -Russell Wilson's overthrow problem returned- after being absent for several weeks. Wilson had to scramble a lot in this game, and Chicago's front four is surprisingly fast. There might be a link to Wilson's being pressured and his overthrowing. That's my theory, anyway.

    -Sidney Rice had a terrific game. I sure hope he's okay.

    -Doug Baldwin had a nice game. I sure hope he's okay.

    -Golden Tate continues to develop and the guy we saw today looked like a star in the making. It wasn't very long ago that Tate was indecisive and stupid looking with the ball in his hands. Today he knew exactly how to prepare for the catch, transition his body for the run, and knew what cuts to make, and he made them all very quickly with a great deal of explosiveness and a hint of shiftiness. This was the player Seattle put a 1st round grade on in 2010. And his (should have been) game winner was just ridiculous.

    -I'm fine with drafting another WR, but I've liked this WR corps from the beginning of the season and I feel like they've just gotten better and better since then. The WRs are beginning to feel like a big strength for this team, even if we won't have anyone close to 1000 yards.

    -Everyone else lost this week. The Saints, the Vikings, the Bucs, and even the 49ers (holy crap!). I guess Green Bay won, but I have no reason to keep my eye on them. Not yet anyway. That and they beat the Vikings to do it. So yeah. Good weekend.

    -Something about getting screwed by the refs makes you want to win a game even more, and even before then this was like a playoff game for Seattle. So yeah, this game was very emotional. It was probably the most emotional game I've experienced in the regular season since the Giants game in 2005. What a great win.
    Last edited by kearly on Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:36 pm, edited 12 times in total.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:24 pm
  • Good post.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:30 pm
  • Another bad call I didn't see mentioned was the Maragos muffed punt recovery. Officials signalled Bears ball before the pile was even cleared. And of course...the play couldn't be challenged.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:30 pm
  • Good post, as always. I agree with you about our WR corp. I think they are actually pretty good. Both Rice and Tate near 100 yards. This offense has grown together, and I hope they stay together for as long as possible.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:31 pm
  • Love it.

    I still want another starting WR, though. For all the brilliance of Wilson's runs, they're usually the result of a play breaking down, and that's still, IMO, on the WR crop. Seattle's playbook still feels very confined and needs some downfield talent to open it up. You thought Wilson looked good with this corps? Imagine him with Brandon Coleman. Hoooolllyyyy crap.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:34 pm
  • And this is why we wait for this. Masterful post, as always.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:35 pm
  • Good stuff per usual kearly. I politely disagree with you about the Edwards TD overturn call. I watched that play from every angle they gave us and I simply could not see any evidence to overturn the call. His hands were under the ball when it arrived and had control the whole time. If the ball moved around a bit, it's moot as his hands were still between the ball and the grass. However, regardless, I agree they did not have enough clear evidence to overturn the call yet they did any way. The officiating today hasn't been this blatantly one-sided since SBXL*.

    How fun is it going to be to get to root on Russell Wilson for the next several years? Holy cow I'm positively glowing.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:35 pm
  • Thanks Kip....Mike Carey's ref crew was an abomination.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:35 pm
  • -The Glove- wrote:Another bad call I didn't see mentioned was the Maragos muffed punt recovery. Officials signalled Bears ball before the pile was even cleared. And of course...the play couldn't be challenged.


    That was the worst of all of them, imo.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:35 pm
  • I always look forward to reading this after every game, win or lose.
    I think though, there is another reason why we won this game:

    All white uniforms!


    /sarcasm off.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:36 pm
  • We did have one sack (Wagner), but our pass rush continues to be a major concern - especially on the road.

    Good stuff, Kip.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:38 pm
  • I just love 80's beard guy.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:40 pm
  • MontanaHawk05 wrote:Love it.

    I still want another starting WR, though. For all the brilliance of Wilson's runs, they're usually the result of a play breaking down, and that's still, IMO, on the WR crop. Seattle's playbook still feels very confined and needs some downfield talent to open it up. You thought Wilson looked good with this corps? Imagine him with Brandon Coleman. Hoooolllyyyy crap.


    There are some nice WRs this year, but the one I'm pining for is DeAndre Hopkins. In terms of polish + talent he reminds me a lot of Julio Jones.

    FlyingGreg wrote:We did have one sack (Wagner), but our pass rush continues to be a major concern - especially on the road.

    Good stuff, Kip.


    Actually, the "sack" in question was the play where Cutler randomly fumbled the ball away then jumped on it. Wagner was the first to make contact hence the "sack". I'm not even totally sure that was a passing play that down either. Not that I'm complaining. Anything that helps Wagner's case for DROY is a good thing.
    Last edited by kearly on Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:43 pm
  • There's the "Random Thoughts" post everyone was looking for! Yay. Good write-up, Kip.

    That said, I agree with you for the most part. This part, in particular, is key:

    kearly wrote:Today Seattle faced a great defense with a good QB and a great WR. They faced a team with an 8-3 record that is in contention for a bye. This game was on the road at 10am. And during this game the defense played poorly and the NFL went to WWE referees. Yet despite all those things, Seattle still somehow won the game, for one reason and one reason only.

    Russell Wilson.


    Most definitely. This game was all his. He single-handedly won this game for us. Against the worst officiating I've seen since SBXL*. To say nothing about going up against the #1 defense in the league. On the road. At 10:00 in the morning. I don't think I'm going too much out on a limb to say Russell Wilson is the only quarterback we've had who was able to take us into those circumstances and come out with a win.

    We've had some great quarterbacks, and some great road wins - including some great comeback performances. But name a quarterback you'd rather have in the lineup against the Chicago Bears' defense, on the road, in an unfairly officiated game, where it was necessary to produce not one, but two 80+ yard game-winning touchdown drives. Not a single drive where we need a touchdown to win it. Not a ten-point deficit where we can go down the field to the 40-yard line and kick the game winner. Two drives, both of which require touchdowns, the closest of which is 80 yards away.

    In spite of what Russell Wilson says in any interviews, this win was all on him.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:43 pm
  • Aros wrote:Good stuff per usual kearly. I politely disagree with you about the Edwards TD overturn call. I watched that play from every angle they gave us and I simply could not see any evidence to overturn the call. His hands were under the ball when it arrived and had control the whole time. If the ball moved around a bit, it's moot as his hands were still between the ball and the grass. However, regardless, I agree they did not have enough clear evidence to overturn the call yet they did any way. The officiating today hasn't been this blatantly one-sided since SBXL*.

    How fun is it going to be to get to root on Russell Wilson for the next several years? Holy cow I'm positively glowing.


    There was a front angle view that pretty clearly showed the front nose of the ball on the ground between his hands.
    Last edited by therealjohncarlson on Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:43 pm
  • Does our defense officially suck now?
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:45 pm
  • Tech Worlds wrote:I just love 80's beard guy.

    Me too. I think Ryan's very fair towards both teams and very straight to the point and will not let shit calls go uncommented upon and has a lot of excellent insight. Just compare him to the abomination that was Mike Martz. Meyers is no slouch as a play by play guy either.


    Excellent write-up as always Kip. You're forgiven for the one bad call you forgot about since there were so damned many no one could really remember them all. ;)
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 5:52 pm
  • JSeahawks wrote:
    -The Glove- wrote:Another bad call I didn't see mentioned was the Maragos muffed punt recovery. Officials signalled Bears ball before the pile was even cleared. And of course...the play couldn't be challenged.


    That was the worst of all of them, imo.


    From the get go it was obvious that Maragos landed on the ball. He landed with his back towards the punt returner and had his arms around the ball. Then to confirm it, he came out of the pile with it.

    The referee blatantly saw this yet called it Bears ball because he knew it couldn't be challenged. Wow, just wow.

    Thank you for the write up Kip, first class as usual :th2thumbs:

    Edit to add: It was encouraging to here the announcers agreeing that the calls were bad. "The Seahawks sideline has a legitimate complaint on that call."
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:00 pm
  • One more thing, I want an elite DT first overall. Whether we get one like Soliai in free agnecy, or draft one in the first round, we really need help on the line.

    If it were me, I'd trade Flynn to KC to swap 1st round picks then see if I can't trade back a little bit for some good picks and get a penetrating DT or DT/DE. I really really really like Ezekial Ansah, he reminds me of Jason Pierre-Paul and I would whatever it takes to get this guy.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:00 pm
  • kearly wrote:So yeah, this game was very emotional. It was probably the most emotional game I've experienced in the regular season since the Giants game in 2005. What a great win.


    Totally agree. The funny thing is, I was all centered and serene just before kickoff. I was convinced I would handle this game calmly. Then the Lynch fumble on the 1st drive... and all calmness was out the window.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:04 pm
  • HawkAroundTheClock wrote:
    kearly wrote:So yeah, this game was very emotional. It was probably the most emotional game I've experienced in the regular season since the Giants game in 2005. What a great win.


    Totally agree. The funny thing is, I was all centered and serene just before kickoff. I was convinced I would handle this game calmly. Then the Lynch fumble on the 1st drive... and all calmness was out the window.


    And then Wilson catches it.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:29 pm
  • Great post kearly, as per usual. ;-)
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:35 pm
  • Your usual great post we all wait for. I agree I think RW is a saviour for us, I have said so in a back handed post, but god I love that he puts this team on his sholders and carry's us.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:43 pm
  • You forgot to mention on the terrible officiating, the refs premature whistle on the Bears punt returners fumble where Seattle recovered the football. Such bull****.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:53 pm
  • therealjohncarlson wrote:There was a front angle view that pretty clearly showed the front nose of the ball on the ground between his hands.


    I know the view and what they were saying but I just wasn't seeing it. I wasn't trying to be biased either, just as a football fan I did not see anything but a catch.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:54 pm
  • I hope you don't mind me tacking on a random thought here Kearly, but to me... when Lovie went for it on 4th down on what would have been an easy FG and make it a two score game I said out loud, "THIS TEAM HAS NO RESPECT FOR YOU HAWKS!". I hope like heck that Pete was yelling at the guys at halftime that the Bears didn't respect them enough to kick a field goal, and the Hawks had the pride, fortitude, strength to stop that drive and win the ball on downs. To me that was a massive turning point because I think the Hawks felt disrespected, disgusted, etc. but also proud that they knocked Bush right back down on his butt and said "Hell no!". It was a really big blunder by Lovie no matter how much Tim Ryan liked the call. You take the points, and you absolutely do NOT give a team "in game bulletin board material" like that. I loved the response and could see when the offense came back out that they were pissed seeing that Chicago disrespected them so badly that they thought nothing of leaving points on the field and giving the ball up. That will fire you up. I saw it in Golden, RW, Sid, Marshawn, M-Rob, the whole line, Zach (who was busting his butt to get open), and of course Baldwin who outleaped everybody for a spectacular catch. It was sweet to see the team just get fed up and not take that crap lightly, because to me, that was a horsecrap call that really did show no respect, and I believe they paid for it, because the game completely turned on that one play.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:00 pm
  • SharkHawk wrote:I hope you don't mind me tacking on a random thought here Kearly, but to me... when Lovie went for it on 4th down on what would have been an easy FG and make it a two score game I said out loud, "THIS TEAM HAS NO RESPECT FOR YOU HAWKS!". I hope like heck that Pete was yelling at the guys at halftime that the Bears didn't respect them enough to kick a field goal, and the Hawks had the pride, fortitude, strength to stop that drive and win the ball on downs. To me that was a massive turning point because I think the Hawks felt disrespected, disgusted, etc. but also proud that they knocked Bush right back down on his butt and said "Hell no!". It was a really big blunder by Lovie no matter how much Tim Ryan liked the call. You take the points, and you absolutely do NOT give a team "in game bulletin board material" like that. I loved the response and could see when the offense came back out that they were pissed seeing that Chicago disrespected them so badly that they thought nothing of leaving points on the field and giving the ball up. That will fire you up. I saw it in Golden, RW, Sid, Marshawn, M-Rob, the whole line, Zach (who was busting his butt to get open), and of course Baldwin who outleaped everybody for a spectacular catch. It was sweet to see the team just get fed up and not take that crap lightly, because to me, that was a horsecrap call that really did show no respect, and I believe they paid for it, because the game completely turned on that one play.

    Great post Shark. Guessing Kearly ain't gonna mind one bit.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:01 pm
  • Another great post Kip

    I still feel our tight ends need to be involved more. This game was no exception, although there was a HUGE conversion on the last drive caught by a TE IIRC.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:06 pm
  • SharkHawk wrote:I hope you don't mind me tacking on a random thought here Kearly, but to me... when Lovie went for it on 4th down on what would have been an easy FG and make it a two score game I said out loud, "THIS TEAM HAS NO RESPECT FOR YOU HAWKS!". I hope like heck that Pete was yelling at the guys at halftime that the Bears didn't respect them enough to kick a field goal, and the Hawks had the pride, fortitude, strength to stop that drive and win the ball on downs. To me that was a massive turning point because I think the Hawks felt disrespected, disgusted, etc. but also proud that they knocked Bush right back down on his butt and said "Hell no!". It was a really big blunder by Lovie no matter how much Tim Ryan liked the call. You take the points, and you absolutely do NOT give a team "in game bulletin board material" like that. I loved the response and could see when the offense came back out that they were pissed seeing that Chicago disrespected them so badly that they thought nothing of leaving points on the field and giving the ball up. That will fire you up. I saw it in Golden, RW, Sid, Marshawn, M-Rob, the whole line, Zach (who was busting his butt to get open), and of course Baldwin who outleaped everybody for a spectacular catch. It was sweet to see the team just get fed up and not take that crap lightly, because to me, that was a horsecrap call that really did show no respect, and I believe they paid for it, because the game completely turned on that one play.



    Bonehead call by Lovie, I agree. They have a beat up O-Line with a banged up RB and a great defense. Take the points. However, there are some teams (like SF) where I think you have to go for it purely based on the size and athleticism of their O-Line.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:20 pm
  • Great write up.One thing I disagree with is the Oline.In my opinion they just maybe the week link of the team.Wilson and Lynch have masked the problems we have had for most of the season.
    Wilson is too valuable to us to have him scrambling so much.His health is definitly worth investing more picks in this Oline
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:13 pm
  • I lost faith in NBA officiating when Phoenix beat the Sonics in the 7th game of the Western Conference Finals so that Charles Barkley could play Jordan. The Suns went to the line four times as often as Seattle. A referee from that game is now in Federal prison.

    When I see officiating in a game like this, I just have to wonder.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Sun Dec 02, 2012 9:18 pm
  • Loved the read option. Told my buddy they could run that all day and it would work, and it did for 70+ yards! Wish they would have done more of that last week when Miami was keying in on Lynch for limited gains. Certainly does add that extra dimension
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:02 am
  • On the broadcast I loved how Ryan did not notice Red Bryant was starting and called him out until I believe the 3rd possesion.The starting LB core-A rookie and 2 second year guys.I noticed Malcom Smith all night.Thought he was very good,I also like him as a blitzer.WT3 I noticed a few times but not really in a bad way.He seemed OK.I would go with him over Tru next week even if Tru is healthy.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:40 am
  • Holy wall of text batman! :shock: Excellent post, but I think it may be in competition for the longest you've done yet. :mrgreen:
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 2:04 am
  • SharkHawk wrote:I hope you don't mind me tacking on a random thought here Kearly, but to me... when Lovie went for it on 4th down on what would have been an easy FG and make it a two score game I said out loud, "THIS TEAM HAS NO RESPECT FOR YOU HAWKS!". I hope like heck that Pete was yelling at the guys at halftime that the Bears didn't respect them enough to kick a field goal, and the Hawks had the pride, fortitude, strength to stop that drive and win the ball on downs. To me that was a massive turning point because I think the Hawks felt disrespected, disgusted, etc. but also proud that they knocked Bush right back down on his butt and said "Hell no!". It was a really big blunder by Lovie no matter how much Tim Ryan liked the call. You take the points, and you absolutely do NOT give a team "in game bulletin board material" like that. I loved the response and could see when the offense came back out that they were pissed seeing that Chicago disrespected them so badly that they thought nothing of leaving points on the field and giving the ball up. That will fire you up. I saw it in Golden, RW, Sid, Marshawn, M-Rob, the whole line, Zach (who was busting his butt to get open), and of course Baldwin who outleaped everybody for a spectacular catch. It was sweet to see the team just get fed up and not take that crap lightly, because to me, that was a horsecrap call that really did show no respect, and I believe they paid for it, because the game completely turned on that one play.

    It doesn't have anything to do with disrespect. Going for it on 4th-and-1 in the opponents' territory is almost always the correct call. Here is a great article on Chip Kelly and aggressive playcalling. It was a great call by Lovie even though it didn't work. The momentum shift theory doesn't hold here either considering the Seahawks didn't even reach midfield on the ensuing possession.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 3:06 am
  • jewhawk wrote:It doesn't have anything to do with disrespect. Going for it on 4th-and-1 in the opponents' territory is almost always the correct call. Here is a great article on Chip Kelly and aggressive playcalling. It was a great call by Lovie even though it didn't work. The momentum shift theory doesn't hold here either considering the Seahawks didn't even reach midfield on the ensuing possession.


    Don't misunderstand me, I agree with you in spirit- I think teams are generally too conservative and should go for 4th down more often in certain situations.

    That said, Chicago on the season is around 40% on 4th down tries. They had not been running the ball well at that point in the game either and Seattle's run defense is very good. If we accept the 40% number as meaningful, then that means they were risking 3 points for a 40% chance to *maybe* get 7. Except that the odds are actually lower than even that- because even after they convert they'd still need to finish the drive and score. Maybe they have a turnover or maybe they end up kicking a fieldgoal later in the drive and the risk was for naught.

    The further you are from the end zone, the harder it is to justify going for it (unless you are in a 4 down game situation, obviously). That's because the further you are from the endzone, the lower your odds are that you'll actually get that TD. So going for it on 4th and 1 at the 5 yard line is a lot better than going for 4th and 1 at the 25 yard line. The exception to that is if a field goal is not realistic, so going for it at the 40 could be a smart move as a punt doesn't get you much and the reward of a first down easily outweighs the reward of a 20-39 yard punt.

    The 4th down play in question was at the Seattle 15. That's iffy if you ask me. If they do convert, Chicago's red zone TD rate is 51% for the season. For simplicity lets assume that if Chicago makes the 1st but doesn't score a TD that they get the FG attempt. A 40% of conversion x a 51% chance of finishing the deal is just 20%. So there is a 20% chance the gamble pays off, a roughly 20% chance of breaking even (they convert but kick the FG anyway), and a 60% chance of the gamble backfiring.

    I do think that the gamble is worth it in certain situations. If it's 4th and goal at the 1 yard line then the risk is worth it because you're basically talking a 40% chance of a TD in that situation and even if you lose, the Seahawks will likely 3 and out at their own one and give you good field position back. I think it's also worth it at the 35-40 range because FGs that long are about about as unlikely as a 4th down conversion would be. And if it's just outside FG range it's definitely worth it unless you have an amazing special teams group that can reliably pin punts inside the 10.

    But at the 15 yard line, I think the 60% chance of not getting the 10 point lead outweighs the 20% chance of getting a 14 point lead.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 3:36 am
  • kearly wrote:If we accept the 40% number as meaningful,

    This is where I disagree with your analysis. If the Bears true conversion rate on 4th and 1 is 40%, you're right that kicking would have been right, but their being 40% (4 of 10) on 4th downs this year potentially includes situations like 4th and 10 late in games they were trailing or other situations where conversions would be more difficult than 4th and 1. ANS wrote a detailed 4-part article a few years ago studying 4th down decisions. On part 3 of that article, there is a graph with league-wide 4th down conversion percentage based on distance to go and field position. Between the 10 and 20, the conversion percentage on 4th and 1 is approximately 75%. Maybe you can adjust that down a bit in this situation because of Seattle's strong defense, but it is still much closer to 75% than 40%.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 4:03 am
  • Awesome post and observations, as usual!
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 6:12 am
  • He's back! I LOVE your writeups kearly, but the last few or maybe two, have been kinda short, dissapointing like the games you are writing about. This one was great tho, best Kearly write up of the best Hawks game so far this year!
    Much respect.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:47 am
  • That was an awesome game. Its possible to represent the 12th at home? I was yellin and aw...

    Officiating was bad but I also believe the Bears have some real play makers.

    For us to be better I think we need upgrades on the offensive and defensive lines; also Tight Ends. Nothing wrong with some free agent additions.

    Playmaking can be contagious. McCoy threw himself in a Tatesc kind of way. It has taken some time to establish a routine with Tate and Rice.

    Maybe next year camp will emphasize more the routine and less recycled players.

    Good show.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:11 am
  • [quote="kearly"
    -Something about getting screwed by the refs makes you want to win a game even more, and even before then this was like a playoff game for Seattle. So yeah, this game was very emotional. It was probably the most emotional game I've experienced in the regular season since the Giants game in 2005. What a great win.[/quote]


    Yea, I almost forgot who we were playing, the Bears or the Refs, almost like a Superbowl repeat I watched some time ago. :sarcasm_off:
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:16 am
  • therealjohncarlson wrote:
    I know the view and what they were saying but I just wasn't seeing it. I wasn't trying to be biased either, just as a football fan I did not see anything but a catch.


    As long as the receiver has possession of the ball, it can touch the ground. The receiver can't use the ground to 'make the catch', though.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:27 am
  • Great write up as always. I believe the rule to be that a 15 yard penalty only overrides a 5 yard penalty. It offsets a 10 yard penalty. They call it the 5/15 rule.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:13 am
  • therealjohncarlson wrote:
    Aros wrote:Good stuff per usual kearly. I politely disagree with you about the Edwards TD overturn call. I watched that play from every angle they gave us and I simply could not see any evidence to overturn the call. His hands were under the ball when it arrived and had control the whole time. If the ball moved around a bit, it's moot as his hands were still between the ball and the grass. However, regardless, I agree they did not have enough clear evidence to overturn the call yet they did any way. The officiating today hasn't been this blatantly one-sided since SBXL*.

    How fun is it going to be to get to root on Russell Wilson for the next several years? Holy cow I'm positively glowing.


    There was a front angle view that pretty clearly showed the front nose of the ball on the ground between his hands.


    The ball CAN touch the ground as long as he maintains possession. It's the Burt Emmauel rule that came from the Tampa Bay losing the the Rams in the NFC championship game in 1999. He had his hands under the ball.

    Frankly I agree that it probably should have been an incomplete. However, the initial call was TD and I don't think was indisputable evidence that he didn't maintain possession of the ball. From everything I saw he had his hands under it the entire time and controled dispite the nose touching the ground.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:16 am
  • Kearly, Chicago's 40% on 4th downs is misleading because surely all of their 4th down attempts haven't been 4th and inches. Their odds of making it on that play had to be a decent bit better than 40%.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:23 pm
  • kearly wrote:Just after Brandon Marshall somehow hauled in that unbelievable 56 yard completion near the end of regulation, my dad turned to me and said "well, if Seattle misses the playoffs, this is the play we'll look back on." Of course, Seattle could look back at a lot of plays this season (I'll spare you the recap) and wonder. He was right though. As tough as the Stafford comeback was, as tough as the endings in Arizona and Miami were, what Chicago did in the final 20 seconds of regulation was essentially unprecedented. The NFL was stunned when Atlanta pulled a similar play to beat Carolina, but that drive began with 45 seconds on the clock. Chicago had just 20.


    If I'm dissecting the game film and looking for concerns, Brandon Marshall's production yesterday would be right near the top of my list. Do you realize that Chicago's receiving corps as a whole had 17 catches ... and Marshall had 10 of those. Essentially, he WAS Chicago's passing offense (exactly as I had said in the Preview thread). To me, that is highly concerning and Jerry Brewer was right on the money to throw out the whole PED question today. I figured with Trufant's absence it would be addition by subtraction -- but that wasn't the case. Trufant according to Stats Inc had a burn rate of 72.4% -- the 2nd Worst starting 3rd CB in all the league. To me, I'm starting to think long and hard about the need to draft another nickel CB (especially given the impending suspensions).

    kearly wrote:And if Seattle had lost in overtime, that's all we'd be talking about. It was the perfect exclamation point on a growing theme in recent weeks: that Seattle's defense is more of a cause for concern than the offense is. Jay Cutler is one of the most sacked QBs in the NFL. He was not sacked today and was barely touched. The secondary again played too much zone defense and allowed Brandon Marshall to embarrass them on numerous occasions.


    How the heck Cutler's jersey remained clean is absolutely beyond me. That was a very patchwork offensive line that came in to yesterday's contest having given up 35 Sacks (3rd Worst in the NFL) ... and 67 hits on the QB (5th worst). YET, Seattle's defense couldn't touch him for the most part. With Red Bryant's plantar fasciitis and the D Line's performance yesterday, I'm thinking Defensive Line is increasingly becoming a top priority moving in to this year's NFL Draft.

    kearly wrote:But even saying that, if Seattle had lost- I would have pulled the "officiating sucked" card. Some people wouldn't want to hear it- after all Seattle's defense did almost everything they could to lose this game. I don't like blaming the officials, in fact I go out of my way to point them out when they have a solid outing. But today was just awful. Not just awful, but one sided, with all the terrible calls going against Seattle and often at critical times.


    Hard to disagree with any of the bad calls that you mentioned. They were unbelievably bad IMO. I know refs are supposed to be neutral, but most of those really smacked of homer calls to me.

    kearly wrote:Today Seattle faced a great defense with a good QB and a great WR. They faced a team with an 8-3 record that is in contention for a bye. This game was on the road at 10am. And during this game the defense played poorly and the NFL went to WWE referees. Yet despite all those things, Seattle still somehow won the game, for one reason and one reason only.

    Russell Wilson.


    I've made no bones about it -- he willed them to a victory yesterday. It's like he was saying, "We are NOT going down today!" And he took responsibility to win that game completely on his shoulders. He has come of age. If I could pick Colbert's Alpha Dog of the Week, it would be Wilson -- 2 game winning games against what was arguably the NFL's best defense IN CHICAGO -- are you kidding me?!? Future Super Bowl winning QB -- absolutely I got that feeling -- felt like I was watching a future HOF'er.

    kearly wrote:Doug Baldwin had a nice game. I sure hope he's okay.


    Doug Baldwin (to me) was one of the unsung heroes of the game. He was absolutely CLUTCH yesterday and a HUGE reason that the Seahawks won yesterday. People are going to focus on Rice and Tate -- and rightfully so. But, this team doesn't win without:

    A key 3rd Down catch for 20 yards right before Halftime (lead to a FG)
    2 clutch 3rd Down catches on that 4th Quarter drive that lead to Tate's TD.
    Another clutch 3rd down catch in OT on 3rd down and 10. His catch came right before Rice's game winner ... but it doesn't happen without Baldwin's catch.

    That was the Doug Baldwin we saw all last year ... and it was very good to have that Baldwin back yesterday.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:31 pm
  • Hawkscanner wrote:Doug Baldwin (to me) was one of the unsung heroes of the game. He was absolutely CLUTCH yesterday and a HUGE reason that the Seahawks won yesterday. People are going to focus on Rice and Tate -- and rightfully so. But, this team doesn't win without:

    A key 3rd Down catch for 20 yards right before Halftime (lead to a FG)
    2 clutch 3rd Down catches on that 4th Quarter drive that lead to Tate's TD.
    Another clutch 3rd down catch in OT on 3rd down and 10. His catch came right before Rice's game winner ... but it doesn't happen without Baldwin's catch.

    That was the Doug Baldwin we saw all last year ... and it was very good to have that Baldwin back yesterday.

    Good post scanner. We've all been waiting for the DB of last year to show up and he did yesterday.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Mon Dec 03, 2012 1:46 pm
  • Great post Kearly. The facemask call on Irvin was a bad call. The Chicago Olineman had his had on Irvin's facemask. I thought that's what they were going to call. It seemed like SBXL all over again with the amount of lobsided calls. it seemed like the Seahawks couldn't get any break. The cool thing is that the Hawks found a way to overcome that. In the past, they would have succumbed to this but they kept at it and found a way to win. Nice to see.
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Re: Random Thoughts™ on the Bears game
Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:11 am
  • MidwestHawker wrote:Kearly, Chicago's 40% on 4th downs is misleading because surely all of their 4th down attempts haven't been 4th and inches. Their odds of making it on that play had to be a decent bit better than 40%.


    Well, teams usually aren't going for it on 4th and 10. Most 4th down tries are short (or desperate). Granted, the real number is probably neither 40% nor 75%, since neither number accounts for Seattle's 4th down defense (which is pretty good) or their excellent run defense in short yardage situations. At best we are left with guesses and approximations.

    Hawkscanner wrote:If I could pick Colbert's Alpha Dog of the Week, it would be Wilson


    Hah! Nice reference. That gets a tip of the hat.
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