Week 5: Bears Dominate All Three Phases
Total failure for all three units in the humbling loss.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
J.P. Losman overthrew Lee Evans when he had a step on his man on the first series and that set the tone for his day. A better throw would have given the Bills another very early touchdown and may have given the Bills a better shot at keeping this game close. Losman's two first half interceptions and pick early in the third however made that impossible. He was 14 for 27 for 115 yards and a late touchdown to go along with his picks and a fumble. He had a QB rating of 35.8. Grade F: It really didn't matter who was the QB, they still would have got whipped.
Willis McGahee ran hard all day despite the blowout unfortunately there really wasn't anywhere for him to run. He had 50 yards on just 14 carries. He also caught four balls for 15 more yards. Anthony Thomas didn't touch the ball. Daimon Shelton was called for a costly illegal motion penalty on a fourth and one forcing the Bills to punt which resulted in a botched snap and subsequently a Bears field goal. Grade D: McGahee showed his heart in playing hard to the end.
Lee Evans was a one man offense in this game. He had 94 yards on nine catches which was 65% of the team's offense. Peerless Price dropped a pass that would have given the Bills a big first down as the game was slipping away late in the first quarter. He also couldn't hold on to another one. He had just one catch for six yards. Roscoe Parrish and Josh Reed did not catch a pass. There were no catches or even passes thrown to the tight ends Robert Royal and Kevin Everett. Grade D: A for Evans, F- for everyone else.
The unit did well in pass protection early but faltered a bit more late when the Bears were teeing off. They allowed three sacks but Losman had time to throw most of the game. Duke Preston got the start at right guard for Chris Villarrial. He would give way in garbage time to rookie Aaron Merz who would see his first live action. Jason Peters had another false start penalty and Mike Gandy was beat for one of the sacks. Only powered the running game for 3.2 yards per carry. Grade C: Not the reason for the loss.
Aaron Schobel had a sack in garbage time. Chris Kelsay had an offsides penalty but was the leading tackler of the unit with six. Ryan Denney was quiet for the first time this year with three tackles. Larry Tripplett was quiet for the fifth time this year. The defensive line allowed the Bears running game to cut right threw them like a knife to 155 yards at four yards a clip. John McCargo had two tackles. Grade F: Awful game for this unit.
London Fletcher had a quiet nine tackles. Takeo Spikes did not play again and was replaced by Keith Ellison who had a third down stop and four tackles in all as well as a fumble recovery. Angelo Crowell had a sack and five tackles. He was replaced by Mario Haggan for a couple of series when he was banged up. Grade F: The worst game of the year for this unit.
Terrence McGee was in a battle all day with Bernard Berrian and he came up the loser. He did deflect a pass to Kiwaukee Thomas that was a near interception by both players on the Bears opening drive. It forced the Bears to settle for 3 but a pick would have given them nothing. It would have been a tough pick by either player. McGee was also called for a pass interference penalty on the Bears 2nd series. He made up for it with a beautiful pass breakup to hold Chicago to a 2nd field goal. Thomas had good pressure on Grossman on that play. McGee was then beaten by Berrian for the Bears first touchdown and beaten by him for a 62 yard bomb that setup another score. Thomas dropped another potential interception on the Bears opening possession of the third quarter. Nate Clements was beaten for his share of receptions before leaving the game with a thigh injury. Ko Simpson led the team with 11 tackles as he had his best game of the year. Donte Whitner added eight tackles. Grade F: Also awful in the loss.
Brian Moorman bobbled a low Mike Schneck snap on a punt. It appeared like a fake was on and Moorman left early to run to his right but he said the fake was not on. Moorman did average 57.8 yards on six punts but most of them were returnable. The Bills did hold the dangerous Hester to 10.5 yards on four punt returns. Kickoff returns were held to a 14 yard average. Terrence McGee fumbled a kick return that setup a Bears score. McGee only averaged 22.7 yards on seven kickoff returns. Roscoe Parrish had one punt return for 15 yards but he should have let the punt bounce since he caught it at the 2. Rian Lindell had an easy day, just two kickoffs and an extra point. Grade F: Worst day of Bobby April era for this unit .
Dick Jauron was making a gutsy call going for it on 4th and 1 on the first possession. He may have got a break when they had an illegal motion penalty since it would have been tough to convert. The fake punt play was just another in a series of trick plays that have failed this year. He didn't have his team ready like everyone thought he would against his former team. They were undisciplined with seven penalties and five turnovers. Grade F: They deserve the same grade most of the other units got.
Game Analysis and Review
Bears Game Preview