“A player on a streak has to respect the streak. You know why? Because they don’t happen very often. If you believe you’re playing well because ... you’re wearing women’s underwear, then you are!” - Crash Davis to Annie Savoy in “Bull Durham”
It isn’t to the scale of the Chicago Blackhawks going shave-less through Stanley Cup runs but the level of facial fur around Halas Hall has ticked upwards of late and not because of any razor shortages.
The reason is that the Bears are on a two-game winning streak – San Diego, St. Louis – and as offensive coordinator Adam Gase said on Thursday, “You saw ‘Bull Durham,’ right? ‘Respect the streak.’”
No member of the organization has mounted a serious challenge to guard Matt Slauson, beard-leader in the clubhouse. But while the look hasn’t reached into every position group entirely, all of the offensive linemen are fuzzy (Kyle Long has hair on the bottom of his head but not the top) and quarterback Jay Cutler’s chin upholstery was noticeably thicker on Thursday, more than just missing morning’s grooming.
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One member of the defensive line had to remove his to preserve domestic tranquility (“’too scratchy,’ she told me,” he said) but growth is breaking out everywhere, even to the point of bringing the look back for some who’ve been intermittent with theirs.
“I’ve had a beard before, then I shaved it off,” said rookie safety Adrian Amos. But now it’s back.
“Last time I shaved,” Amos added, laughing, “was before San Diego.”