In the end, the Chicago Bears screwed up what could have been something historic. Last week they managed to be the first team to lose while winning the turnover battle by three and holding the ball for 40 minutes. They had the chance to do it two weeks in a row and live forever. Instead, they’re just the galaxy’s joke on all of us who continue to watch them every week because it’s how we were raised. Anyone can do that.
The thing about football is, at least it used to be, something you could put down six days a week and then for a long offseason. Maybe I could be woken up for the draft occasionally and then go back into football hibernation. Sometimes I could just go the whole eight months without thinking about the Bears at all. January until the end of training camp. No one should watch preseason football anyway. It probably shouldn’t even exist. Football fandom is simple, easy. At least it used to be.
But after Monday, there’s one sequence I’ll never shake. It’ll flash at me in the midst of our miserable February and March, and hit harder than the wind that waits around the corner for you and then hits you like a runaway truck when you round that corner. It may ruin the three-day spring we get. Sitting on various patios in the summer, trying to have the best experience known to man, a tall glass of cold gold on a warm day, it’ll flash in my mind and the darkness and cold will descend again. In the middle of the night, in the morning at the gym, wherever, it’ll be waiting for me. Haunting, slithering around on approach like Venom, waiting to bond with a host and put it through another round of nightmares.
Three minutes to go in the second quarter. After yet another Josh Dobbs turnover, the Vikings and really karma asking for the game to be put away. A single touchdown would have done it. The drive starts with yet another wide-receiver screen. At least this one was to DJ Moore, the best hope to make anything after a catch. Goes for 11 yards. First down. OK, got that one to work.
You’d think an offensive coordinator would think he got all he was going to get out of that play. It’s in the memory now and has to be accounted for. A real OC, or even a competent one, plays off of that. Runs a counter on it. Uses just the idea of it to find something else. Something down the field.
No, Luke Getsy, after drinking his pregame and post-first quarter can of paint, ran the same play again. The exact same thing. You’ll never guess, but it was batted down at the line. Funny how showing a team the same look two plays in a row blows it up.
All right, maybe tried to get a little cute. Maybe Getsy, wiping the Sherwin-Williams from his chin, never thought the Vikings would think he would never run the same play twice in a row. Maybe he was feeling his oats, convincing himself he could run something until they stopped it. Maybe it was all of it.
Fam, they ran another wide receiver screen to the other side on second down. It got stuffed.
Three straight WR screens. Three of them. I’ve never gawked at a car accident on the highway. I don’t watch horror films. I had both forced upon me at once on Monday night. A showcase of incomprehensible incompetence and lack of creativity, spiced with a dose of inexcusable fear and a completely unwarranted dash of self-belief, all rolled into two minutes of completely void football that will come to define my fandom, and possibly life, from here on out. The last 25 years of Bears football, somehow distilled into three plays. A life wasted put on display in a reader’s digest of confusion and despair, reminding me and all other Bears fans what we’ve lost and wasted in a compacted sting akin to being impaled by a six-foot icicle.
I’ll never be rid of it.
Vikings fans may say they’ll never get over watching Dobbs attempt to play football while blindfolded and with two left hands. I’ve watched that game a dozen times at least. Maybe it wasn’t Dobbs before, but it was Krenzel or Hoyer or Glennon or Bagent. All these names, they’re all the same name.
I do this every week. I used to be able to put it down. Now I carry that every day. Three WR screens. I’ll never be free.
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Original source here
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