If the NFL knew then, what the NFL knows now, it might have scheduled the Chicago Bears/ New England Patriots game for Sunday night, or maybe Monday Night Football. It may have even kept it for its own Thursday night broadcast, had they known: This is a 'big game'. A marquee match-up. Games like this are the reason they created the flex schedule, so they could give national attention to the most compelling contests.
There might not be a song by a country music star to open the festivities, but you can bet they'll plenty of mentions of Chicago's favorite championship game,Super Bowl XX. Sure, Tom Brady and the Pats have plenty of Super Bowl rings to brag about, but that 25 year anniversary is going to be more temptation than CBS can bear.
A win for the Bears against the juggernaut that is the New England Patriots, and a lot of people are going to have to rethink their predictions for the NFC playoffs. Will this game live up to the anticipation? Can the Bears really stand up to one of the most efficient offenses in the NFL? Will the Patriots be able to keep their edge after a short week, on a messy field, in a town where most of them have never played?
I dunno. I'm awfully eager to see. But for now, what do we know?
Injury Report : While the Bears have had good fortune all season, this week the linebacker position lacks a little depth. Pisa Tinoisamoa had his knee scoped, and is out for this week, at least. His back up, Nick Roach, missed practice today with a bruised hip. He could still be ready for Sunday. Rod Wilson is filling in the SAM spot, in the meantime.
Insult Report : Jay Cutler described Soldier Field's turf as 'one of the worst in the league'. He said it's no secret to Bears players, "We've got to deal with it, and our guys know it. They are aware of how to cut and how to move on it. So we've just got to go out there and play."
Julius Peppers had less to say, when asked about his free-agency period, and the Patriots interest in the stand out defensive lineman, " There was nothing special about the Patriots. I mean, they were just one of the teams on the list. We really never got into in-depth talks with them."
The secondary weighed in on a couple of very different topics, as well: Bears safety Chris Harris, isn't buying the hype. When asked if a win against the 'elite' Patriots would change the minds of the people who still doubt the Bears legitimacy, Harris said, "I doubt it very seriously...If we win it will just be another win in a 16-game season. It will give us 10 wins. But I don't think it will change anyones perception. Who cares?"
Cornerback D.J. Moore was far less circumspect, when asked his opinion of New England quarterback Tom Brady. Moore praised the quarterback for his abilities, but also noted, "His choice of women is impressive." As indeed it is. Brady is married to 'supermodel' Gisele Bundchen.
It was probably her prominence in the fashion industry that prompted Tom to go with this 'Hunky, But Sensitive Goth Vampire' outfit he wore for the post game press conference after his Victory over the Jets Monday night.