game notes from the packers-bears game.
Quick question - what's with the NFL scheduling rivalry games in the first week? Everyone is so fired up for the regular season to begin that to try to add to it with a rivalry game just seems pointless. If the Packers were lined up against the Jets yesterday would you have been less interested? I'm guessing no.
Pregame - Our Announcing team is Sam Rosen and Tim Ryan, his new partner. I was ambivalent but after the awkward "welcome to the team" handshake they just did on-air I'm pretty geeked.
1st quarter, 12 minutes left - Marquand Manuel is caught peeking in the backfield and gets invited to a Rex Grossman pants party. He was beaten by 5 yards. For what it's worth Mark Roman would have been beaten by 7 yards. So it's an improvement.
1st quarter, 6 minutes left - I believe Tim Ryan has now uncorked "outphysical" and "no trickeration" in the past few minutes. It's nice to see he's using "outphysical" so early in his development, that usually takes a few years to nail down for most announcers. And "trickeration" is just fantastic. It's a whole new way of talking people! Get on board!
1st quarter, 5 minutes left - with the Bears marching again Nick "I Make No Big Plays" Barnett makes a big play, picking off Grossman in the end zone. Interestingly Aaron Kampman supplied the pressure to the QB and Barnett was one of, roughly, 9 Packers who had a shot at the ball. Good read Grossman! I also uncork my first "yeaaaaah!" of the season. Feels good, little rusty.
Is the Fox robot player dude really necessary at this point? They've been revising the robot player deal forever and I don't get it. Do we want football to be played by robots? Is this some stereotypically weak scientist's idea or something?
What is up with the Packers and their makeup kits? What are these things? I've not seen them before and I am vexed, deeply vexed. I prefer my football team to not wear Hello Kitty lipstick cases on their bellies. Who approved this?
1st Quarter, 1 minute left - for the umpteenth time (or third if you want to be accurate) a Tight End or Fullback catches a ball with Poppinga covering. Is he a step slow? All I remember about Poppinga from last year was that he actually hung with Mike Vick a couple times in the Atlanta game so how come he's getting destroyed by Desmond Clark?
2nd Quarter - Kampman with his first sack and second pressure of the game. Nice work. Stops the drive. Robbie Gould trots out for the field goal. Somehow I missed this last year but Robbie Gould is apparently 12 years old. Also, why is he wearing number 9? I realize McMahon wasn't worthy of having a retired number but still, everyone who looks at 9 on the Bears thinks of him. We need a new wing, not quite the ring of honor, but something to acknowledge that certain numbers are associated with certain players no matter what.
2nd Quarter, 13 minutes left - Did we go no huddle there for a play? Why just one? I won't lie, everyone seems to ratchet up the ol' heart rate when the no huddle is mentioned, including me. I don't know why. I have no idea why, but it's notable.
2nd Quarter, 10 minutes left - QB sneak on 4th and inches. I'm kinda bored with the playcalling here. I know it's just a couple of inches but c'mon Mike III! You're the underdog, your team has looked terrible and you're running the plays like someone from NFL HQ handed them down to you. Be the crazy guy! Have Jennings run a fly pattern, try some play action. Do something! Oh, and maybe don't rely on your 3 crappy o-linemen next time. Remember, the interior is inferior.
2nd Quarter, 9:30 left - KGB gets spun round like a record, right round with a massive hold. Flag comes out. Defensive holding on a player that didn't even show up on the tv replay. If this game was closer in score I'm not saying I'd be in Refsuckville but I'd definitely be headed in that direction.
Speaking of the refs what's up with the new unis? I don't get it. This just seems like something the NBA would do. You don't mess with the ref unis okay? This needs to go away tootsweet.
2nd Quarter, 7 minutes left - Hawk is split wide on a wide receiver or tight end or something. I can't tell but it's interesting that he drew that coverage. The play went the opposite direction and I'm wondering if that was a matchup the Bears wanted to exploit or if they just wanted to get Hawk away from the play?
2nd Quarter, 6:23 left - I hate Noah Herron with the red hot passion of 1000 suns. The fact that he fumbled just makes me want to add more suns to the equation.
2nd Quarter, 6 minutes left - In a show of solidarity to the Green Bay crappiness on offense Thomas Jones runs backwards 20 yards and then throws a wounded duck to Rex Grossman for a total loss of 4 yards. They've been stealing from our playbook evidently.
After another field goal by the Bears Sam Rosen is kind enough to remind me that Noah Herron AND Fergie are back for the kickoff. I am not amused.
The playcalling thus far has been loaded up on the run, which has been hit and miss. Is the over-reliance on the run a subtle sign that this isn't Favre's team anymore? Or does Mike III just believe in running even when he is down and out against a team that can defend everything he comes up with?
Jon Ryan's punts have been iffy but his pass to Herron for a 1st down was sort of nice in a "hey that wasn't totally incompetent" sort of way.
2nd Quarter, 1:20 left - Tim Ryan is lighting up the quote board, a Bears defender "knifed thru on a good get off". He wasn't blocked so yeah, I'd guess you'd call that a good get off.
3rd Quarter, 13 minutes left - Ahman looks....good? The O-line officially sucks on pass protection but Ahman has found some holes thus far.
3rd Quarter, 10:50 left - AJ Hawk bursts through the line on a blitz and almost sacks Rex Grossman and Rex Grossman's suddenly soggy pants. That was fast. Very, very fast. So far AJ has been a second late to the tackle throughout the day but if he can find a way to utilize that speed I feel good about his future.
3rd Quarter, 9 minutes left - Greg Jennings here? Check. Hands? Hands? Greg did you forget your hands? Go home and get them.
3rd Quarter, waning seconds - Tim Ryan has just raved on and on about the strength and conditioning coach of the Bears for the past, oh, 12 minutes. You can hardly tell it's a blowout.
4th Quarter - Is it Daniel or Danielle Manning? I'm not liking this whole Danielle thing.
4th Quarter, 14 minutes left - Packers employ rare punt defense of just attacking one half the field and hoping the returner doesn't notice. He noticed. Damn.
4th Quarter, 13:45 left - I have a nonsexual mancrush on Donald Driver. Thank you for showing up Mr. Driver. Also Mr's Kampman and Green. Next time see if the rest of the fellas want to join you. I haven't looked at the stats but I think DD has 90% of the catches and 95% of the yards through the air today.
4th Quarter, 8 minutes left - Tim Ryan, I don't think you can be my announcer anymore, it's not you, I'm just in a different spot in my growth period right now. That's got to be the most bizarre way of saying the Packers are rebuilding while the Bears are not that I've come across.
The game finally ends. Favre has two picks but both came while we were out of it anyway so I'm not going to harp on it. I'm sure it'll be the lead in all the highlight shows though. Sigh.