For the first time since the NFC North began in 2002, all 4 teams from the division won on the same weekend. Wow.
I watched the games this week from Steeler country, and I wasn’t able to watch much else than the Bears game, so my column this week may not be as long as usual. Fantasy-wise I had a real rough week. Since three regular starters of mine were on a bye, I was forced to improvise a little bit, but then I lost another wide receiver due to injury, and when I checked Sunday morning, I was also informed that Dominick Davis would not be starting either, so there went another starter, forcing me to start Isaac Bruce, who was only going to see limited time. And then Kelly Holcombe went down almost immediately in the Bills game. So yeah. Not good. However, despite all that, I only lost by 14 believe it or not (thanks mainly to Stokley actually having a decent fantasy week). And thanks to my opponent having an utterly miserable week as well.
So I guess the only major things this past week were the Bills making a statement against Kansas City (though I think most of the Trent Green critics out there are slowly being proven right), Giants blowing it to the Vikings (who did not have an offensive touchdown mind you, despite having 24 points), and the Packers ousting the Falcons in a shootout. I didn’t see any of those coming. And for two teams being labeled as two of the best defenses in the NFL, I sure never thought Tampa and Washington would end up 36-35. And I think we may have just witnessed the Eagles collapse for this season. It’s amazing how one play can really crush an entire season. I hope they come back, but you could just see the life sucked out of that team after that pick.
Well the Bears did the same thing they’ve done for 5 straight games now. Won. Not pretty, but they won. It’s not often I can boast a 5 game winning streak, so I may as well enjoy it. With Carolina coming up this week, we are really going to have something to prove. However, I have really reached a feeling of confidence in our defense (which is understandable considering we are now number one in yards allowed and points allowed) and in our coach. I think Lovie Smith is an incredibly underrated coach. I’ve been down on him before, but he really is making some good moves, and it seems like he’s learning from his mistakes. Watching Nathan Vasher break the record for the longest play in NFL history was amazing. I was yelling the whole time “Can he do that? Is that legal? Alright, GO!!” And that was pure coaching for him to even be back there in the first place. It’s also kind of fun to say “man, our defense only allowed one pass completion the entire day!” Granted, it was to the worst team in the NFL, but still. So I don’t have much to say about the Bears after this week, other than it feels good to be a fan right now, and I recognize that our offense is miserable, yet we still have something going. But this week will really prove whether or not we are a legit playoff team, or just the best team in the NFC North (which doesn’t say much).
Gotta love Lovie
It is also a very good thing that the Lions won this week too. If they lose that game, that’s it. You’re playing a crappy team, you just lost to a crappy team, and you have to get your head on straight already. And they did, so that’s good. However, once again it’s not much of a proving ground, but this week will be as they’re playing a very good Cowboys team.
So a couple of real litmus test games this week for my Bears and Lions, and until next week there’s not much to say. And it’s kind of hard to breath too.