Chicago Sports Inside and Out – The Chicago Sports Maven

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Super Bowl? Miami Here We Come!

Posted by sportsmaven on January 22, 2007

Don’t let anyone tell you that the Chicago Bears didn’t earn this victory today against the New Orleans Saints. I have never experienced the energy, passion, the intensity contained in Soldier Field today. I have never heard it so loud. The snow fell all game…it was perfect. I refer to my January 18th post as the keys to today’s game with outcomes:

For the Bears:

  1. Third down conversions as a key stat this week. The Bears are at 31% in stopping 3rd down coversions, which is #2 in the NFL in that category. The Bears held the Saints to 38% in 3rd down conversions.
  2. Secondly, do not let Drew Brees get comfortable in the pocket. Change the looks he’s getting, use the blitz early, take him out of his rhythm. If Brees is allowed to get comfortable early, his accurate passing will pick the Bears secondary apart, especially with little to no push to the quarterback from the Bears front four. Brees was sacked 3 times today including once on the 3rd play of the game. He was knocked down about 100 times, and committed a key intentional grounding penalty in the end zone to swing the momentum back to the Bears.
  3. Finally, win the turnover battle and get very physical. The Washington Redskins did this in the regular season and held Brees to his lowest QB rating of the season (59.9). Saints committed 4 turnovers (3 by Brees) Bears had no turnovers. Bears were clearly the more physical team today.

For the Saints:

  1. The Bears actually match up with the Saints fairly well, so the keys for the Saints are to establish the run early to loosen up the passing game. Deuce Mc Allister and Reggie Bush combined for 10 carries for 37 yards as the Saints abandoned the run early and threw 49 passes.
  2. Secondly, the Saints need their rush ends, Will Smith and Charles Grant to get a push on Rex Grossman to protect their weak secondary. The Saints are prone to the big play and when they give it up, they give it up BIG. (ask Fred Thomas about that) Put the heat on Rex and the Bears offense slams to a grinding halt. Rex Grossman hardly felt any heat and wasn’t sacked today. Fred Thomas was burned for a 33 yd. touchdown reception by Bernard Berrian.
  3. Finally, win the time of possession battle. Keep the #1 rated offense in the NFC on the field as much as possible. The Saints lost the time of possession battle, 35:15 to 24:45.

In the AFC, the Indianapolis Colts and Peyton Manning finally got over the hump called the New England Patriots 38-34 to meet the Bears in Super Bowl XLI on Feb. 4th in Miami, FL. Tom Brady had a last gasp opportunity and threw and interception that essentially ended the game. The early line for Super Bowl XLI is Colts giving 7. The NFL Today crew on ESPN and the ESPN analysts are already picking the Colts to win. I suppose the Bears will be playing that underdog card again. No need for me to tell you who I like. Here we go again….

3 Responses to “Super Bowl? Miami Here We Come!”

  1. Stu said

    Congrats to da bears. Rex is picking it up, at the right time, and now he gets to go back to Gatorland to strut his stuff.

    With the AFC playing a superior role to the NFC this year, the AFC felt like the NFL, while the NFC seemed like the USFL.

    All that means nothing now. The resurgent Bears, against a Colts team led by the dude who engineered, one of the best comebacks of our recent times.

    Should be the best bowl game in a long time.

  2. Cub Fan 1908 said

    Clearly being the underdog, receiving no respect from the National media, etc. has worked to the Bears advantage up to this point. I think that this team, and the individuals who make it up, have learned to use this negative talk and lack of respect to fire them up, therefore, bring it on!!!!!

  3. Dre said

    Sunday’s game was incredible, and I couldn’t keep my eyes from the TV. But, I would like to also mention the fact that although Da Bears game was my favorite of the day, it probably wasn’t the best one. The Patriots Colts game was one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. With the Pats leading the entire game, and Brady having the ball with a minute left game in his hand, I thought that Peyton Manning would fall at New England’s feet once again. But Bob Sanders showed his worth to the Colts as well as the entire defense. A last minute effort picked off, and the Colts are headed to face the Bears in Miami.
    The Colts will blearly be the favorites going into this game as they probably should be. But I like the way the Bears match up against them. The Patriots showed today that Manning struggles under pressure. The Bears will need to have their front four play with their ears pinned back heading for the quaterback. With pressure on Manning and another great game in the secondary, minus the missed play to Bush, the Bears can once again hold up the Super Bowl Trophy.

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