The Bears lost 41-13 to the Giants in their 2nd pre-season game of the year. However, if you ask anybody whose halfway knowledgeable about football, the Giants came away with the more devastating loss.
While the Bears came away from the game with no injuries (moral victories, YEAH!), the Giants weren't so lucky. Starting CB Terrell Thomas was lost for the season due to an ACL Tear while attempting to sack Jay Cutler. Safe to say that Jay Cutler is a force to be reckoned with.
There were a lot of positives to draw from this 41-13 spanking that the Bears receiving. Here is my list of observations that I jotted down during the game.
Jay Cutler played the entire first half so the game was halfway entertaining to watch. Mechanically it looked like a new quarterback. Jay navigated the pocket much more efficiently than he has in the past. This helped Cutler throw a frozen rope down the sideline to Hester for a gain of 37 yards. It was the most exciting play of the pre-season. Only to be followed up by a 42 yard screen pass to Matt Forte in which he reversed fields and scampered for a huge gain.
After giving up 4 sacks last week against the Bills, the starting unit only gave up 1 sack. The sack in question could be placed on the shoulders of Cutler. Cutler should have thrown the ball away but opted to slide to avoid the hit.
Roy Williams was targeted twice and dropped both passes. Bear fans are waiting for him to make the impact that offensive coordinator Mike Martz thinks he can make.
Most impressive player offensive was Marion Barber once again. In the first half and second half Barber rattled off big plays. The guy moves the chains. Commentators believe that he is back to the form of his Barbarian days in Dallas.
Defensively, Julius Peppers was the most talked about player. Peppers created consistent pressure for Eli Manning.
Brian Iwuh filled in for Lance Briggs and broke up a big pass on a 3rd down in the redzone to Mario Manningham. Iwuh played solid but, outside of 2-3 good plays his coverage lacked.
Most big runs by Giants RBs by Jacobs and Bradshaw were a product of poor tackling. Major Wright missed an open field tackle on Jacobs’ 18 yard TD run.
The most disappointing phase of the night was special teams. After a great showing against the Bills the Bears allowed Devin Thomas to return kicks at will. He averaged well over 40 yards per return. The Bears also gave up a blocked punt when Dom DeCicco completely missed a block in the B gap. That led to an easy block on Spenser Lanning, on his 2nd career punt in the NFL. This likely cost DeCicco his roster spot. The one redeeming play on the night on special teams came on a 45 yard kick return by Johnny Knox.
The Bears came away with the most important thing from this game. NO INJURIES.
No need to panic Bear fans. It's only pre-season and despite Cutler playing the entire 1st half Julius Peppers and Brian Urlacher came out midway through the 1st quarter. Eli Manning wasn't facing our 1st string defense the entire half like Cutler faced. That very reason is why Tom Coughlin is without his starting CB for the rest of the year. He shouldn't have extended the starting CB's playing time that much.
The Bears play their 3rd pre-season game on Saturday against the Titans at 8:00 EST.