ReFo: Bears @ Packers, Week 10

The Packers beat the Bears comfortably on Sunday Night and Ben Stockwell looks through the key performances

| 2 years ago
2014-REFO-WK10-CHI@GB

ReFo: Bears @ Packers, Week 10


2014-REFO-WK10-CHI@GBBoth teams entered this game looking to rebound from a heavy defeat prior to their bye weeks. From early on it was obvious that only one team would get their season back on track as the Packers compounded Chicago’s four touchdown defeat in New England by putting another 50 points on their defense after the bye.

The Packers showed their quick strike ability with two touchdowns in little more than three minutes in the first quarter either side of a Chicago turnover, a blow that the Bears never recovered from. Aaron Rodgers’ six first half scores were paired with terrific games from the likes of Julius Peppers and Clay Matthews on defense in what was ultimately a supremely comfortable victory.

Chicago Bears – Performances of Note

Brandon Marshall, WR: +1.4

Breakdown: One positive from that debacle for the Bears last night was the return to form of Brandon Marshall who notched only his second 100 yard game of the season. Marshall looked at his powerful best after the catch, breaking three tackles to take his season total to eight, all of them in his last four games.

Signature Play: Got the Bears’ only offensive touchdown at 7:57 in the third, high-pointing a jump ball against Sam Shields before putting him down with a stiff arm and lunging through Ha Ha Clinton-Dix’s tackle for a 45 yard score.

Jared Allen, DE: -0.4

Breakdown: Busts on the back end allowed the Packers to pile up the points, but a lack of pressure up front gave Aaron Rodgers ample time to work. Allen racked up seven pressures (3 Ht, 4 Hu) in Green Bay last season, but could only pick up three hurries last night as his struggle to make a consistent impact as a pass rusher in Chicago continues.

Signature Stat: After eight starts with the Bears, Allen has 26 pressures on 260 pass rushes. His pass rush productivity score is 7.7, a small drop on his 8.0 with the Vikings last season.

Jay Cutler, QB: -5.1

Breakdown: For as good as Cutler was last season he has been that bad this season with only his display against the Falcons’ leaky defense a reminder of last year’s form. Though he was unfortunate with the bounce on his pick six he also got lucky with a pair of dropped picks from Casey Hayward and Davon House in a performance that offered little positive from Cutler himself.

Signature Stat: With no pressure (27-of-41 dropbacks) Cutler earned a passing grade of -4.1, completing only 15-of-26 for 158 yards and an interception.

Green Bay Packers – Performances of Note

Jordy Nelson, WR: +3.6

Breakdown: The Bears will be glad to see the back of Nelson as he stretched his season totals against Chicago to 16-of-18 targets for 260 yards and four touchdowns. Exploiting breakdowns in the Chicago secondary for each of his scores Nelson also put his work in on Eddie Lacy’s touchdown, getting the final block on Kyle Fuller to ensure Lacy reached the goal-line.

Signature Play: Snagged his two scores in the space of three second quarter minutes, his second (Q2 12:09) toeing the sideline of the endzone with he and Rodgers assuming Ryan Mundy would be closer on the play.

Clay Matthews, LB: +4.0

Breakdown: Splitting his time between inside & outside linebacker Matthews was a problem for the Bears where ever he lined up, making plays in every phase of the game. His seven defensive stops tied a career high (Week 1 2013 at SF) and the Bears failed to exploit him in coverage, completing only one pass for 3 yards on three targets into his coverage.

Signature Play: Recorded two sacks in the game, the one that stood out (Q1 0:54) saw him beat Jermon Bushrod quickly to the outside on a third down feigning inside and then stepping out with Bushrod off balance to take down Cutler.

Julius Peppers, OLB: +7.0

Breakdown: Against his former employers Peppers rolled back the years with a big game as a pass rusher, earning his highest overall grade since he arrived in Green Bay. His four pressures (1 Sk, 1 Ht, 2 Hu) included a strip sack of Cutler as well as batting a pass and deflecting another that led to the Packers’ first interception.

Signature Play: Set the Packers up for their final score in the first half rounding Michael Ola at right tackle and closing to a hesitant Jay Cutler to force a fumble which he recovered at the Bears’ 42.

PFF Game Ball

Not to be left out of the prolific passing displays we have seen of late Aaron Rodgers put on a clinic in the first half, exploiting breakdowns in the Bears’ secondary with ruthless efficiency.

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| Director of Analysis

Ben joined Pro Football Focus in 2007, and has since been in charge of the company’s analysis process. He also contributes to PFF’s weekly NFL podcast.

  • MrBoo

    those bears are a shame for the proud franchise

    • VinceR

      at least they didn’t give up the Lambeau/GB Packer record for points scored, they were close.

  • Jason Williams

    I’m racking my brain this morning trying to think of a bigger disappointment in Chicago sports history than this year’s Bears. There was a ton of talent on that roster on opening day. None of it has shown, except for Forte and Bennett.

    • mutzki

      Did you include Cutler in the talent category at the start of the season?

      • Jason Williams

        I’m not sure where I stand with Cutler anymore – I was one of his biggest supporters but at the end of the year last year I thought it was time for him to move on. When he re-signed I thought it was a good thing.

        Now I’m trying to figure out how the Bears can get out of that contract. In reality it’s a 3 year, $18MM a year deal, not a 7 year deal as was widely reported. I think 3 years is too much at this point. I think you suffer through one more year with him, and then cut him loose.

        Either way, the Bears will need to tank badly in one of the next 2 years to get a good QB in the draft and the Bears never seem to have that “bottom falls out” season. Great QB’s just don’t hit free agency anymore.

        • Chris

          We’ll trade you Dalton for Cutler.

          • Jason Williams

            you know – honestly – at this point, what’s the difference? Both beat up on bad defenses and have had some success in the regular season and neither have done much in the postseason. I would say in years past that Dalton had more around him – now, I’m not so sure.

          • [email protected]

            Take it, you can cut Dalton his money isn’t guaranteed. (i think?)

          • mutzki

            They’d still be on the hook for Cutlers guaranteed salary which accelerates into the current year.

          • [email protected]

            Not if he was traded.

          • mutzki

            Oh yes. Guaranteed is guaranteed and doesn’t switch teams, nor does it go away when the player is cut

          • Jason Williams

            buzzkill.

          • [email protected]

            Sure it does, the contract goes with a player when he’s traded.

          • Phillip

            If Dalton or Cuter were actually traded after this season, the guaranteed money they signed for with their original team still gets hit to that teams cap the following year. If Dalton was traded after the year, Cincy would still be on the hook for a dead cap hit of 9.6 mil in 2015. Jay Cutler’s dead hit is 19.5, Cutlers literally cheaper to keep in 2015 than to do anything with cause in 2016 his dead hit becomes 3 mil. The team that trades for the player, they’re on the hook for all remaining money on the contract if their is anything guaranteed left, but the signing teams still take a dead cap hit on the year for it. It’s like the Harvin trade, there’s no guaranteed money left, so Jets are on the hook for nothing, they can cut Harvin free and clear, but Seattle is still gonna take a 7.2 mil dead cap hit next season.

          • VinceR

            I’d take Dalton over Cutler, I know the talent difference, but I want someone who is at least a fighter. Cutler puts off an odor of loser to me, again what do I know? I’m not in their facility but his body language is terrible if things don’t go his way, I know Dalton is limited but he is a winner. Tough call though, each pick has some warts. Glad we have Rodgers!

          • mutzki

            The normal money does, yes. The bonus however stays with the team, because it is guaranteed. It accelerates into the next league year and the team remains on the hook for it.

          • [email protected]

            Its not because its gauranteed, its because its a signing bonus. Percy Harvin had guaranteed money in 2013 and the Jets took that over when they traded for him.

          • mutzki

            Maybe we’re talking about completely different things, i don’t know, but here is what i know about salary cap.

            What the Jets did might be an exception to the rule. I don’t know the exact numbers there nor can i be bothered to look into it. All i know is this: generally speaking when player A signs a contract with team X, the contract usually contains guaranteed money (call it signing bonus or whatever you want). If player A gets traded to team Y before fulfilling his contract with team X, generally speaking, his remaining guaranteed money (which is split evenly over the duration of the deal) stays on the team X’s salary cap. It accelerates into the current, or next league year, depending on when the player is traded.

            That’s why it’s idiotic for the Bears to get rid of Cutler by either releasing or trading him, because the guaranteed money appears to be too much right now. Again, won’t look at the contract details there. I’ve read somewhere that Julius Peppers still counts somewhat like $8 Million against the Bears cap this year, because they released him, and what remains on their cap is the rest of his guaranteed money. Won’t look into that either.

          • mutzki

            Chris, since i see you doing a lot of commenting on this side and i have no idea nor seem to find a good explanation for it on this site i’m gonna ask you this.

            What is the penalty grade exactly for? Ok, penalties i get it. I understand that if you commit a lot of penalties you get a negative grade. However, yesterday both Clay Matthews and Tim Jennings were flagged for defensive penalties (roughing the passer and pass interference respectively), both penalties resulted in first downs and yet both players made it out of the game with a positive penalty grade.

          • Chris

            Penalties are a very subjective process when they grade games. Just because a player committed a penalty doesn’t mean he lost points on his grade for it. Sometimes the ref calls it on the wrong player, or it is deemed through watching replay that no penalty should have been called. Or, sometimes a penalty like a defensive hold can save a much bigger play like an 80 yard TD so sometimes a penalty can be a good thing.

            I did not watch the game last night, so I can’t comment on either of those penalties. All I can give you is some usual explanations as to why players’ penalty grades might not match up.

          • PFF_ColeSchultz

            The penalty grade is primarily associated with penalties due to discipline. So negative grades from false starts and offsides (to name a few) go into that category. Penalties that can be attributed specifically to a certain area, such as offensive holding (run/pass block) or defensive holding/pass interference (coverage), will have the negative grade added into the relevant category rather than the player’s penalty grade.

  • SteveS

    Lots of problems for the Bears. Conte still being a starting safety in the NFL is a big one. He’s no match for Nelson or Cobb in coverage. The Bears offensive play calling continuing to not give Marshall #1 targets is confusing. He played like a man last night. Jeffrey can’t get any separation this year. Jeffrey is a good #2 receiver, but he is not a #1. Disguising plays in their offense is a problem as well…GB knew what was coming on most running plays.

    • Jason Williams

      what is Chris Conte still doing in the NFL? I mean really?!?

      • mutzki

        Also, what did these DEs the Bears paid so heavily for in free agency do last night? Anyone arguing FA is the way to acquire players needs to be sit down in front of a screen and look at last nights Bears.

        • Jason Williams

          The Packers are the model franchise – draft well, don’t overpay when contracts are up, don’t spend big on free agents.

        • Brian Dugan

          Packers have gotten infinitely more value out of Peppers vs. the Bears with Allen this year.

      • Brian Dugan

        When the Bears signed the doctor, M.D. Jennings in the offseason, I knew their defense was in big trouble. I know he didn’t make the final roster, butif your a Bears personnel guy, how do you see Jennings play so unbelievably bad within your division last year and sign him anyway.

      • VinceR

        they could have had Clinton-Dix, but I think they are happy with their pick CB Kyle Fuller, I thought around draft time teams were saying Fuller could play both safety and CB, maybe CHI should switch him to safety, get some athleticism and instincts in their back end. I know they drafted Brock Vereen but I have no clue how he has played this year at safety.

        • Jason Williams

          I think Vereen’s been okay but hurt. Maybe the bigger problem is that they just couldn’t afford to lose Charles Tillman again.

          I don’t think Clinton-Dix would have turned this team’s fortunes. This team goes as Jay goes and this year that’s been bad.

    • mutzki

      Of the first 18 plays only 4 were runs. That was facing the 32nd (or last) run defense in the league. I don’t know how you justify being so unprepared and such shameful playcalling.

      Oh well, as a Packers fan i hope this Trestman-Cutler combination stays in Chicago for years to come.

      • Brian Dugan

        I agree, but I think Trestman is gone after this year. Hopefully Cutler’s contract keeps him around for another year or two.

        • VinceR

          everyone loved Trestman last year when CHI was rolling up yardage and points??? Whats up, the guy has gone from guru to goner, their problems from a GB fan lie on the defensive side of the ball. If you don’t have tons of defensive talent, you better have a great DC. Maybe they just need a new DC and some new def. coaches and focus a draft or two on picking defenders. The O line didn’t look good against GB but my god its light years better than a few seasons ago. U have an offense with Matt Forte, Brandon Marshall, Alshon Jeffery, Martellus Bennett, only thing missing is a smaller change of pace speed killer type of RB or slot WR and you have every base covered at skill spots.

      • Phillip

        Well they also weren’t playing like the 32nd ranked run D either, and before the Saints game they were really improving, knocking 20+ yards off their YPG totals the previous 2 weeks before the Saints game where everything when down the crapper. Also, those first 4 runs only got them 6 yards, and teams get away from the run quick when it don’t work, especially after the 1st 9 offensive plays they’re already down 14-0, that’ll force a team to abandon the run very quick like the Bears did, and even when they tried throughout the game they couldn’t find anything with it. Clay being inside really added a presence Green Bay hasn’t had there since Nick Barnett or Desmond Bishop.

        • mutzki

          Those Bears still ran the ball to the tune of 180+ yards in the first game. Why abandon something that worked so well in the first game? Also running the ball keeps the other offense off the field and if i’m Trestman i want to see as little of #12 as possible.
          As for Clay playing ILB, i think it’s a nice gimmick, but i would mainly say that it worked so well because it caught the Bears off guard. He still has to rush the passer as he did in this game.

          • VinceR

            I think its more than a gimmick. I think he will be in the middle quite a bit, enough to protect AJ Hawk from being exploited by opposing play callers. And will still get plenty of chances to rush the passer from the right, left, and up the middle.

  • Chris

    It’s a shame the Bears couldnt score a few and keep it semi competitive, because Rodgers could’ve finished with single game records in yards and TDs. I have never seen a stat line like that in 1 half of football.

    • Jason Williams

      Lambeau is Jay’s personal house of horrors. Last night was his best passer rating at Lambeau by a fairly wide margin.

      • Brian Dugan

        That’s pretty mind-blowing Jason. I’m a Packers fan and I’ve watched every Cutler vs. Packers game. I just don’t get why Cutler plays so abysmally against Green Bay. For some reason Dom Capers has completely figured out how to stop Cutler, Stafford, and Matt Ryan, but can’t do anything to stop Eli Manning, Kaepernick, or Wilson.

        • mutzki

          In the early years you could make the argument that Cutler’s protection wasn’t good enough. Now that’s no excuse, i really think the Pack is in Cutler’s head.
          Be that as it may, he just isn’t a very good player and doesn’t deserve the credit people give him.

    • Brian Dugan

      I was thinking the same thing at first, but I’m very thankful that Rodgers, Sitton, and Lang all got out early coming off their injuries. Big game vs. the Eagles in Green Bay on Sunday.

      • VinceR

        Sitton and Lang are GB war horses! and how we lucked into Corey Linsley, no clue, not sure how he grades on PFF but I’m guessing pretty well for a rookie. I do have a little concern still even though he is old(Trent Cole) and Connor Barwin, Bulaga and Bahktiari need to be solid this week. PHI thrives on undersized pass rushers and blitzing, think Rodgers has highest rating in the league against the blitz, so something must give!

    • Phillip

      Yeah, it would have been cool to see Rodgers break the record, but as a Packers fan, i’m more satisfied seeing our defense step up and dominate the entire game. If we wanna be contenders come January we need defense like it was Sunday night.

      • Chris

        Yea but was that good defense or just Chicago’s ineptitude?

        • Phillip

          Green Bay other than Seattle and NO, NO where we were without Burnett and Shields, Green Bay has been playing pretty good defense. N the couple previous games before NO, they were actually improving a lot vs the run, knocked off like 20 ypg in the 2 weeks before NO

          • VinceR

            couldn’t have said it any better. The loss of Morgan Burnett against Saints really hurt the secondary, he couldn’t have picked a much worse game to miss than in the home of Mr. Drew Brees. But GB has lots of competent defensive backs, a much better pass rush and are forcing turnovers again this year. Peppers high grade this game was well deserved but I’ve felt he has brought a ton to the table for the def. unit all year. Mark Sanchez just called Ha Ha Clinton-Dix the best RC safety he has studied on tape all year. GB’s only soft under belly is their beef in the middle(Raji IR) and poor play of AJ Hawk as lead ILB, mixing in Matthews was a brilliant maneuver, even if he only plays inside 30% of time, it will help entire defense and make it harder to game plan for opponents.(see:designing tons of plays to attack AJ Hawk on the call sheet) Can’t wait to see Dom Capers vs Chip Kelly this week, must see!

      • VinceR

        I think CHI game planned on offense to do what they always do, take advantage of GB’s ILB’s using Matt Forte on draws, screens and as a pass receiver, and when they came out and saw Clay lined up as a ILB, it kind of put their entire plan on tilt. If anything, as a true GB Packer fan, this game showed us what a 3-4 defense is supposed to look like with pro bowl talent at ILB in the middle of the defense. AJ Hawk is a great person, and has been a good packer but he is beyond past his prime and is a large part of why GB has had such poor defensive ratings the past few years. At least moving Clay in there will protect him, even if its only for 20-30% of snaps it will help.