Blackhawks

Sorting It Out

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Sorting It Out

Sunday, November 1

Bears offensive coordinator Ron Turner, came away from today's victory over the Browns with a chip on his shoulder. Jay Cutler came away with more bumps and bruises than just an ego.

Frustration is starting to set in on why this offense is cannot execute in key areas of the field like Short Yardage and the Red Zone. Today was a little bit of both that affected the Bears ability to score.

On the Bears first three trips into the red zone, three plays forced the Bears to settle for field goals instead of touchdowns.

1. 7:47 on the clock, first quarter, 2nd-and-9 situation. The Bears elect to go "Wildcat" offense with RB Matt Forte taking the direct snap and WR Devin Hester coming in motion to receive a handoff. The timing of the play was off and the Bears lost 5 yards. Matt Forte who is not used to putting players in motion did not time up the snap of the ball to coordinate with the handoff. Blame the playcaller on this one. These intricacies on offense should have been worked on in the offseason. That is what the Miami Dolphins have done with their running backs. Also, Cleveland runs the "Wildcat" themselves. They have been defending WR Josh Cribbs all offseason and know how to defend it. Bears settle for 3 points.

2. 2:02 on the clock, first quarter, 3rd-and-8 situation on the Cleveland 11 yd line. Bears can get to the 3 for a first and elect to run a slow developing screen to Garrett Wolfe. Another bad call by Ron who I know would like this call back. Cleveland was Blitzing a lot, but this is not the area of the field to hit a slow developing screen. The back of the goal line essentially becomes the defender. There is no where for the defense to drop in coverage because the field has shrunk. Cleveland was there for an easy stop. Bears then take the 3 points.

3. 8:48 on the clock, second quarter, 3rd-and-3 at the Cleveland 3. Jay Cutler is sacked by OLB Kameron Wimbley back at the 14 yd line. Bears again settle for three points. Jay has to know who the "Hot" receiver is on the play. I do believe it was Greg Olsen who was wide open in the flat for an easy TD.

Jay is going to be very sore tomorrow and Tuesday. He took some tremendous hits. As a QB, you have to be able to sort it out at the line of scrimmage. Know your protections and your hots to avoid the big hits he took today. You get hit enough from guys up front just getting beaten off the ball, but don't compound it by not knowing your responsibilities and good situational play like throwing the ball away.

The Bears do have a couple more hybrid defenses upcoming such as the Cardinals next week. Let's see if Jay and Ron can make some corrections.

Sports Talk Live Podcast: Joel Quenneville returns to the United Center

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USA TODAY

Sports Talk Live Podcast: Joel Quenneville returns to the United Center

David Haugh, Charlie Roumeliotis, and Patrick Finley join Kap on the panel.

0:00 - Joel Quenneville returns to the United Center. The guys look back at his 3 Cups in Chicago and discuss his place among the greatest Chicago coaches of all-time.

9:00 - The Blackhawks have won 5 straight and are 3 points out of a wild card spot. Are the playoffs in their future?

12:00 - Patrick Kane has reached 1,000 points. Will he end up at the Blackhawks all-time leading scorer? Could he end up being the greatest Blackhawk ever?

18:00 - Jonathan Toews joins Kap to talk about Joel Quenneville's return, Kane's 1,000th point and the team's winning streak?

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

Sports Talk Live Podcast

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Marcell Ozuna signing with Braves rules out potential suitor for Kris Bryant

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USA TODAY

Marcell Ozuna signing with Braves rules out potential suitor for Kris Bryant

When former Braves third baseman Josh Donaldson signed with the Twins last week, one thought was Atlanta could pivot and try to acquire Kris Bryant to fill the void in their lineup.

That possibility looks less likely now, as the Braves announced Tuesday they’ve signed former Cardinals outfielder Marcell Ozuna to a one-year, $18 million deal.

The Braves didn’t have a dire need for a third baseman — 22-year-old Austin Riley, a former top prospect, is waiting in the wings — so much as they needed a bat to replace Donaldson. Bryant would have checked both those boxes, but the path to acquiring him is more difficult.

Bryant has been fixated in trade rumors this winter, but any extensive negotiations won’t occur until his service time grievance case is resolved. NBC Sports Chicago’s David Kaplan reported last week Bryant trade rumors this winter have been “greatly exaggerated” because the lingering grievance.

The Braves have been named a potential Bryant suitor as they hold the top prospects the Cubs would seek in return for Bryant. MLB Network’s Jon Heyman threw cold water on that notion recently.

There’s also the possibility the Cubs don’t move at all Bryant this offseason.

"No, we're not in a position where we *have* to do anything,” Cubs president Theo Epstein said Friday at Cubs Convention. “I think you want to always avoid being put in a corner where you have to make a deal and your back's against the wall and you're gonna take any deal that's out there.

“We’re not at all in that position but looking at the longer time horizon of the next two years, I think you would be wise at some point to do something that looks out a little bit more for the long-term and a little bit less for the short-term, but that doesn't have to happen now. We're not in a position where we have to move anybody."

Ozuna joining the Braves means the Cardinals lost one of their most productive bats from the 2019 division championship club. Like the Cubs, St. Louis' offseason has been marked by low-key moves, outside of the Cardinals acquiring pitching prospect Matthew Liberatore from the Rays, a deal which sent Cardinals slugger Jose Martinez to Tampa Bay.

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