Free NFL Picks Chicago at Carolina 10-10-2010

October 10, 2010


Chicago Bears at Carolina Panthers

Sunday October 10th, 2010 1 PM EST

The Line: Chicago -3


Chicago impressed early in the season, jumping out to a 3-0 start. The Panthers have struggled in every game, losing by more than one score in every game but one. The Bears were humiliated last Sunday. Both teams are in need of a big win. The Bears don’t want to become last year’s Broncos and the Panthers don’t want to be the Lions.

Keys to the Game:

  • The Bears gave up ten sacks on Sunday. In case you didn’t see Justin Tuck count every finger on both his hands, the Giants made the Bears reach to the bottom of their depth chart by knocking out the first and second string quarterbacks. When you give up nine sacks in the first half, everyone is at fault. Jay Cutler, and every other quarterback for that matter, has a clock in his head. One one-thousand two one-thousand three one-thousand and you better have the ball out of your hands. When your offensive line is struggling that timer goes off a little bit quicker. Cutler had trouble recoginzing where the pressure was coming from, and he held onto the ball far too long. The offensive line might get the blame, but I’m putting this one on the entire offense. Okay Jay, let’s say you feel some heat a little prematurely. Rather than making it second and 15, throw the ball away and live to play another down. The Giants have a great pass rushing defense, but ten sacks in a game is unacceptable.
  • The Panthers are not going to be able capitalize on the Bears poor play. As pathetic as the Bears offense was on Sunday, the Panthers have been just as pathetic at getting to the quarterback all year long. How bad? Twelve players in the NFL have as many or more sacks than the entire Panthers team. How do you let Julius Peppers vacate your team? Maybe if Peppers put on the opposite jersey, I would think the Panthers had a legitimate shot at taking advantage of Cutler. As it stands, they won’t. Thjs will be a chance for the Bears to gather themselves.
  • Oh there you are Mike Martz. This is the Mike Martz we all know and love. Reminiscent of his recent years, Mike Martz was trying to drive a Viper with a Pinto. He refused to switch up the play calling and continued running an offense that required Cutler to take deep drop backs and go through too many progressions. I figured the lack of Bears weapons would come into play at some point this season. Matt Forte is excellent in the Mike Martz offense, but what happens when he gets bottled up and no one is getting open down the field. The offense plays to Cutlers strengths, but the plays take too long to develop. If Martz is going to be too stubborn to switch up the play calling to something more modest, he isn’t going to have a quarterback to finish the game. Simplifying the offense isn’t admitting defeat, it’s giving your team a chance to succeed. Martz is going to look like a genius against the Panthers this week, but he might not be so lucky next week when he takes on his old team, the San Francisco 49ers. Good luck Mr. Martz. Bears fans are loyal to a fault, but they care too much to let you overstay your welcome.

Wrap Up:

There are only a handful of teams I would take over the Bears right now. Fortunately for them, they got the only thing better than a bye week, given their situation. A pick-me-up game is going to allow Cutler to gain some confidence. He needs to make sure he gets the ball out of his hand quicker, though the offense will probably prove to be affective as it was the first few weeks. Expect to see sacks, injuries, and picks all season long. I think they will get a pass in this game by default.

Free NFL Pick: Chicago -3

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