After a lackluster 2012 campaign in which the Chicago Bears missed the playoffs with a 10-6 record, the 2013 NFL season began in earnest today. For the Bears, that means the regular season debut of Marc Trestman.
With the national sports media having picked the Cincinnati Bengals to come into Soldiers Field and leave after four quarters with a victory, the new-look Bears were looking at an 11-point deficit after three quarters.
Offensively, the Bears today looked much like Bears’ offenses of recent past: the team could not muster or sustain Matt Forte and the running game on first and second downs, resulting in three-and-longs.
For a Bears fan, this is the sickest feeling in the world: watching the team struggle on offense, and in the opening game of the season — and for a team that has never been known for its offensive punch historically, too.
In a first half in which the Jay Cutler lead the offensive with all of its three and four-receiver sets, they still had four straight three-and-outs. However, as Canibus so eloquently put it years ago, “it’s about who strikes hardest, not who strikes first.”
Late in the game, the Bears’ offense came alive. With the offense operating mainly out of the shotgun set, Cutler was able to orchestrate a nine-play drive in the third that resulted in a one-yard touchdown run by Forte, and the game clenching eight-play, 81-yard drive in the fourth that also resulted in a touchdown by Brandon Marshall on a 19-yard pass.
Although I could be over the moon with excitement in regards to the Bears’ come-from-behind victory, let’s face facts: it’s Week 1. The first game of the season.
By no means are any team crowned Super Bowl champion after the first game. Nonetheless, with all that said, it’s still nice to see the Bears do something as a team that they haven’t done since the early 2000s — win a game after trailing by double digits.
Who knows, come Week 5 or 6, the national media might actually heap praise upon the Bears for their offensive prowess.