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It would be good if someone on the Bears other than Robbie Gould would tell Brandon Marshall to shut up.
Marshall's yammering Sunday, both inside and outside the locker room, was just the latest example of this selfish player making himself the center of attention at the expense of the team. Previous episodes this season alone involve him embarrassing the team's medical staff by saying he played with an injured ankle when he shouldn't have and his tone-deaf press conference at the height of the domestic violence hullabaloo a few weeks prior.
The veteran wide receiver turned up the volume in the aftermath of the brutal 27-14 loss to Miami. He did so despite the fact that quite simply, he didn't have anything to say. All of that "unacceptable" crap, hey Brandon, everyone knew that already.
Marshall could also be heard telling someone "you just kick the ball." And the obvious context there was that someone who kicks (and I think everyone is guessing it wasn't rookie punter Pat O'Donnell) had made himself heard in the midst of his teammate's rants.
An intervention is necessary and I vote for Jermon Bushrod to lead the way. Someone needs to tell him it is time to talk to Mr. Marshall. Surely Bushrod, who has no problem expressing himself during his weekly Monday appearances on the The Mully and Hanley Show on The Score, can help Marshall understand that he currently sucks at the loquacious leader role. It is time for someone else to be heard, at least for a little while.
I think I speak for all of Bear fandom when I say that if we could just have Marshall simmer down for a couple weeks, we could work our way back to acceptance of his never-shutting-up ways (as long as he catches a half-dozen touchdown passes along the way). A diva's gonna diva after all.
The interventionist can't be Gould (he really does just "kick the ball," unfortunately) and at this point it really can't be Jay Cutler or Marc Trestman. Those two need to head into a bunker together and stay awhile. Maybe then they can come up with a better plan than the one that had them heaving a low-percentage deep throw to Alshon Jeffery when all they needed was a yard on third down the first time they had the ball - and then running one of their worst plays of the season to stymie their second possession.
That was the brutal flanker-type screen they threw to rookie Ka'Deem Carey that resulted in a 10-yard loss and nearly became a turnover. They ran that play out of the pistol formation (the quarterback starts halfway further behind center than when he's in the shotgun - hence the lower-caliber weaponry) that Colin Kaepernick runs so well for the Niners. Except Cutler obviously wasn't comfortable with it and he threw a horrible backwards pass to his running back.
Maybe they can come up with a better plan or maybe the coach isn't really a quarterback guru or a master play-caller or maybe the signal-caller simply isn't good enough to lead a winner. We might as well focus on the former possibility for a better game plan this week because if the latter one is the case, Bears fans are screwed not just this season but for a few more before the guaranteed money in Cutler's contract runs out.
That most certainly wasn't where the ball had to go.
Jay Cutler: "That's where it had to go." https://t.co/WlwXCvYJ5f— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 20, 2014
"The Dolphins entered Sunday having picked off a pass in only one game this season, but [Reshad] Jones was ready for his chance, based on what he had seen studying Cutler," Chicago Football reports.
"After watching film all week we saw [Cutler] was looking where he threw the ball," Jones told reporters. "He was always looking at his receivers and never looking off. I tried to take advantage of that and it paid off."
Reminiscent of Charles Woodson saying in 2012 that "We understand that Jay is excited about his new weapons, but it's the same-old Jay. We don't need luck; Jay will throw us the ball."
"One thing you know about Cutler is he's going to try to make big plays. When you're focus is doing that you'll make an error. He's a phenomenal quarterback, but you can force him into making a mistake."
Bennett may have failed to run his route deeper (and isn't it funny how we always have to debate this point after every Cutler interception), but Cutler seems intent on throwing the ball where he thinks receivers should be instead of where they are.
"We've got to protect the football," Marshall said after the game. "We've got to protect the football. We've got to execute the game plan. We've got to adjust when things don't go as we saw on the film."
Right message, just the wrong messenger.
And it could've been worse. From another play:
Marshall was open. Cutler panicked when the pressure came and threw off his back foot. Should have been an INT.— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 19, 2014
"We don't have an identity," Tim Jennings said. "We don't know who we are."
Shea McClellin didn't take long to remind us why we so enjoyed his stint on the injured list. There he was falling down in coverage as Ryan Tannehill completed his first touchdown pass. There he was being blown backwards by wide receiver Mike Wallace as Wallace took the ball around the end in the first half. McClellin did at least make the tackle on the latter play so I suppose it wasn't all bad, just mostly bad.
(As Trent Green pointed out on the national broadcast, Kyle Fuller also screwed up on that play by playing man-to-man when he should've been playing zone and coming up to help. But still . . . )
It will be lost in the wake of yesterday's carnage, but Jeremiah Ratliff had one of the best halves of football I've ever seen from a DT.— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 20, 2014
Apparently the Bears assign a player each week to antagonize the fans. Last week it was Lamarr Houston, this week it's Kyle Long.
Kyle Long said the booing from fans at home is "unacceptable. Especially when there's not a lot of noise being made on 3rd down." #Bears— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 19, 2014
By the way . . .
Martellus Bennett on fans booing: "They pay for their tickets ... I mean, if I go to a movie, I usually walk out if I don't like the movie."— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 19, 2014
LT: Martellus Bennett added that Transformers 3 was terrible, in case you're wondering.— Adam Hoge (@AdamHoge) October 19, 2014
* NFL: Ryan Tannehill Picks Apart Bears In Dolphins' Road Win.
* Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel: The Dolphins Have Their Swag Back.
* CBS Sports: Bears In Meltdown Mode.
* Hoge: For Trestman, It's Not Just About A Broken Offense Anymore.
Jim "Coach" Coffman is our man on Mondays. He welcomes your comments.