Check in on your friends today. Ask them how they’re doing. Inquire on how they are feeling. And *LISTEN* to them when they respond.
• The Chicago Bears are #InTheHunt at the end of November, just as the calendar turns to December. What else can you ask for?
Long way to go, but 1 GB with two to go against the Vikings. Just sayin’… pic.twitter.com/aOGhEn5MPL
— Bleacher Nation Bears (@BN_Bears) November 29, 2021
• Sigh. Imagine had NFL officiating not screwed the Bears on Monday Night Football. Better yet, imagine had the Bears not screwed themselves in blowing leads against the 49ers and Ravens. Where would the Bears be had they done a better job addressing cornerback concerns? Or wide receiver depth? What if the offensive line had been in better shape to start the year? Or if Justin Fields had been given the keys to the castle from jump street? So many little things can add up to one big thing if you let them.
• And here lies my grand frustration with the 2021 Bears. There are pieces that could have made this a fun season, rather than an infuriating slog. Players who could’ve been part of a competitive team, had they been put in a position to succeed from the start. Every little thing matters when you’re operating with a margin of error as thin as the one the Bears have been working with. Being a little bit better in coaching, scheming, game-planning, and discipline could’ve gone a long way. It doesn’t take a wild imagination to envision this Bears team being 6-5, legitimately fun, and with a rookie quarterback on the rise. Instead, we get to live in this reality. Frankly, this Bullet (and the one preceding it) should be enough to push for an immediate clean slate in Chicago.
• While it’s on our mind, the Steelers are 0-2-1 since “beating” the Bears on Monday Night Football in Week 9. They came up with a tie against the Lions, then followed by coughing up 41 points in consecutive games to the Chargers and Bengals. Football karma is real and there is nothing you can do to avoid it.
• It doesn’t mean the season is coming to a crashing halt just because FiveThirtyEight gives the Bears just a 2 percent chance of making the postseason. There are things to strive for and build toward in the season’s final weeks. Patrick Finley (Sun-Times) and Adam Jahns (The Athletic) underscore what the team can do to build around Justin Fields and get him going in the right direction and finishing on a strong note. Simply put, how Fields finishes the season is far more consequential than game results right now.
• How you spend your Bearsless Sundays in the future could be changing. Disney CEO Bob Chapek told CNBC’s Fast Money program that the company is in the mix to purchase NFL Sunday Ticket, per Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio. Adding Sunday Ticket to ESPN+ would be a nice bonus, not to mention a potential game-changer for how we soak in football content. It might cause an up-tick in price, if it comes to it. But the juice could be worth the squeeze. In any case, let’s monitor that situation for development down the line.
• Kirk Cousins continues to go viral for all the wrong reasons:
4th and goal. Kirk Cousins lines up under his guard. pic.twitter.com/pSLh2YFdAb
— Dieter Kurtenbach (@dieter) November 29, 2021
Kirk Cousins on lining up behind the guard: "Just got under the wrong guy." https://t.co/i2wdKyDuDm
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) November 29, 2021
• I’ve run “HB Direct” enough in NCAA College Football on XBOX and PlayStation to know that this wasn’t a trick play, as some might attest. Unless there is a trick play involving a snap to absolutely no one in the backfield.
• There are times I watch Kirk Cousins play and think to myself: “Yep, there is no good reason not to beat this guy twice a year, every year.”
• As a reminder, the Vikings are 1-4 against the Bears in Cousins’ starts since 2018.
Jared Goff has a better record, TD-to-INT ratio and QB rating than Matthew Stafford in their last 3 games.
2 TD, 0 INT
5 TD, 5 INT
77.5 RTG pic.twitter.com/SEjQ3W3lS3
— StatMuse (@statmuse) November 29, 2021
• The big Obvious Shirts sale runs through today. One item is 10% off, two items are 20% off, three items are 30% off, and four+ items are 40% off. They’re the most comfortable shirts I own. Just sayin’…
• Cyber Monday is here at Amazon, which means you can peruse virtually everything and get a deal. I’d been waiting for Black Friday/Cyber Monday to get a new TV, and now it’s a done deal. #ad
• It’s almost as if making a coaching move at the right time can yield prosperous results:
Packers head coach Matt LaFleur is now 35-9 as an NFL head coach.
He's tied for the second fastest coach in the Super Bowl era to 35 wins, doing so in just 44 games (Chuck Knox did it in 43).
The Packers are now 9-3 and 3.5 games up in the NFC North.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) November 29, 2021
• Mike Tirico was a SNF savage:
"For the week – Harbaughs 2, Ohio nothing" – Mike Tirico pic.twitter.com/QqfMM1oqe1
— Internet #BlackLivesMatter (@cjzero) November 29, 2021
• This is one of the wildest ideas I’ve heard in quite some time, but I’m here for it:
NEW EXTRA POINTS:
Chicago State is considering starting a football team….and I don't think that's crazy.
Here's why they're considering it, what questions they need to answer to pull this off, and more:https://t.co/meioEb30by
— Matt Brown (@MattBrownEP) November 29, 2021
• The baseball rumor mill was hot last night. Marcus Semien lands a seven-year deal worth north of $100 million from the Rangers. Kevin Gausman gets a $100M+ deal of his own from Semien’s former team, the Jays. Here’s an extension for Byron Buxton, which could be worth more than $100 million from the Twins. The Marlins gave Avisaíl García $53 million because they were wanting in on the fun, too. Jon Gray, once thought to be a Cubs free-agent target, gets a modest deal that is reportedly in the four-year $56 million range. Maybe the Cubs are hoping to find a real-life version of Henry Rowengartner to round out their rotation?
Blackhawks Top Prospect Lukas Reichel Leaves IceHogs Game After Nasty Hithttps://t.co/kdMog9UukN
— Bleacher Nation Blackhawks (@BN_Blackhawks) November 29, 2021