Posts tagged with: Earl Bennett

An outsider’s view of the Bears receivers

To hear Lovie Smith and Jerry Angelo tell it, the Bears have the league’s deepest crew of wide receivers. They see Devin Hester as a budding star. Earl Bennett, who caught exactly zero passes last year, has improved greatly. And the rookie wide receivers the Bears drafted are all poised to become the next Jerry Rice.

Of course, all of this is nonsense. The Bears receivers are terrible. The team might have the worst receiving corps in the NFL. Thank goodness for tight ends Desmond Clarkand Gregg Olsen.

It’s interesting, though, to read about what bloggers covering other teams think of the wide receiver situation here in Chicago. For instance, you might check out this post on the Lombardi Avenue blog. The writer of the blog, which covers, not surprisingly, the Green Bay Packers, refers to a radio interview given by Donald Driver, in which the Green Bay receiver says that the Bears have no real quality wide receivers.

The blog writer, wisely, agrees with Driver.

It’s no secret across the league that defensive backs don’t fear the Bears wide receivers. It’s a shame that the Bears acquired a franchise quarterback in Jay Cutler, but still have hardly anyone for him to throw to.

Why the Vikings are still the favorites in the NFC North

I really want to believe that the Bears, powered by the strong arm of Jay Cutler, will win the NFC North this year.

It’s hard to force myself to believe this, though. Yes, it’s a fairly weak division. But I still think the Vikings, though they’re certainly not Super Bowl contenders, are still the smarter choice to win the division.

Here’s why: The Vikings have a good, tough defense. They have arguably the game’s most explosive running back. And if Brett Favre plays for them this year, they’ll have a quarterback who is just good enough.

The Bears meanwhile, still have a lot of question marks. Yes, Jerry Angelo did fill some holes, most notably with Cutler, finally acquiring a quarterback that defensive backs will fear. But remember, that Bears defense has been lousy since the SuperBowl year. Brian Urlacher appears to be winding down. Mike Brown is gone, with not much talent to replace him.

I’m still not sold on Matt Forte, either. Yes, he had a solid rookie season. But he wore down terribly as the season went on. And he’s more of a solid back when he’s on. He’s not a gamebreaker.

Then there are the receivers. Simply put, this is a terrible group. Devin Hester is not a number-one receiver, no matter how many times Lovie Smith says he is. And we’re relying on Earl Bennett? The same Earl Bennett who caught exactly zero passes last season?

I’m sorry, but there are too many holes on these Bears.

Angelo really does like these receivers?

The annual Bears Expo took place last weekend at Soldier Field. Of course, most of the buzz there centered on new quarterback Jay Cutler.

But there was an interesting sidebar, of course, centering on the Bears’ weak cast of wide receivers. According to a story in the Sun-Times, several attendees at the expo questioned Bears general manager Jerry Angelo on who, exactly, the prized new quarterback is supposed to throw to.

It’s a big question. Devin Hester isn’t really a number-one receiver, no matter what Angelo and head coach Lovie Smith say. And you can’t really tout the virtues of second-year receiver Earl Bennett when the receiver didn’t even make it onto the field last year.

But Angelo defended the team’s wide receivers under fan questioning. Maybe it’s all a smokescreen, and Angelo is furiously working the phones behind the scenes to find a new, veteran wide receiver.

For Cutler’s sake, I hope that’s the case. But I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Bears starting the season with their rather sorry lot at receiver. And that’s too bad: These receivers can make any quarterback look ordinary.