Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Senate "Anti-Surge" Resolution

It looks like there is going to be a bi-partisan, non-binding Senate resolution expressing doubts about the value of the surge.

My feeling is that escalating the war in Iraq will do nothing but increase American casualties. Having a non-binding resolution may or may not be a first step to actually getting Bushie to change course. We'll have to see.

Senate "Anti-Surge" Resolution

It looks like there is going to be a bi-partisan, non-binding Senate resolution expressing doubts about the value of the surge.

My feeling is that escalating the war in Iraq will do nothing but increase American casualties. Having a non-binding resolution may or may not be a first step to actually getting Bushie to change course. We'll have to see.

Bushie Messed Up . . . Again

Training of Iraqi security forces have been botched.

Add to that, the fact that federal audits have revealed more gross mismanagement of U.S. taxpayer dollars in Iraq.

What else is new - the search for Osama bin Forgotten, no WMDs, Iraq post-invasion strategy, Katrina response, outing a covert CIA agent, record deficits and debt, borrowing from China . . . on virtually everything Bushie has been wrong.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Bears Thoughts

It is clear that many people think the Colts will win because Peyton is the superior QB. In fact, most folks think that if the Bears win it will be despite Rex.

I don't believe that will be true. I think Grossman will make plays and if the Bears win it will be because Grossman plays well.

Obviously my heart is with the Bears, but I still don't have a good feel for the game and what my final prediction will be.

Bush Administration Outed Plame

For anyone who has followed the Libby trial, there is clear evidence from multiple Bushie insiders that Cheney and Libby were obsessed with discrediting Joe Wilson. The Bush Administration outed his wife, Valerie Plame - who was a NOC agent before they did so. They compromised the security of this country for political reasons and have been lying about it since.

Judith Miller was just the latest to testify that Libby committed perjury about the whole mess.

Dems Making Tough Choices on Budget

The House Dems have put together a huge spending bill that basically freezes many federal budgets at 2006 levels. It will be the first time in years that government spending isn't set to explode.

Republicans in the House are complaining, but they have nothing to complain about. They left a budget mess when they left office without completing the 2007 federal budget. Then, the new budget is lean by federal spending standards. It is a good thing that the process was streamlined and didn't allow all kinds of pork to be added in.

The budget also increases student aid for Americans and cuts foreign aid. Good.

If the Senate can control itself we will have the smallest increase in government spending - by far - since Bushie took office.

War on Science

No matter what some folks may say, the overwhelming body of evidence and scientific consensus is that global warming as a result of human activity is real. Apparently, Bushie has pressured scientists to change results and edit wording of reports to downplay the reality of global warming. That is not science - it is political propaganda.

Minimum Wage Bill Will Pass the Senate

It now includes more than $8 billion in business tax breaks, but it will pass the Senate. Then it will have to be reconciled with the House before being sent to the President. I suspect it will be on the President's desk in February.

Friday, January 26, 2007

If Darth Vader Worked at the Grocery Store

Here is what his life would be like (Episode I). Hilarious.

Episode II.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Computer Says . . .

the Bears will lose to the Colts. Interesting piece in the Sun-Times about the Accuscore computer simulation. It has played out the game 10,000 times with varying conditions and the computer says that Bears will lose by 3-4 points.

What is Lovie Worth?

Lovie Smith will be offered a new contract after the Super Bowl (there are probably some talks going on right now between Lovie's agent and the Bears).

He is currently the lowest paid head coach in the NFL. I heard that Atlanta's new coach Bobby Petrino (former coach at Louisville) signed a 5-year, $24M contract. It seems that $5M/year is the going rate to attract top coaches. If the Bears are serious about Lovie - then they need to offer him a minimum of $5M/year for multiple years. However, there should be some type of escalators for continued success that could move the contract higher.

I think a very fair contract offer would be a new 5 year, $31M contract. Paying a little more than $6M/year seems fair to me.

A Note About A Democratic Congress

Now that the Dems have both Houses, they have a responsibility to provide leadership. Unlike many of my right wing friends who will blindly support and defend anyone with an "R" (Republican) attached to their name, I won't just support Dems just because they are Dems. I have principles that are bigger than a political party.

We will see in coming weeks if the Dems actually do anything to re-establish Congress as a co-equal branch of government. I am curious to see how they move on Iraq. The American people are fed up with Iraq and recognize it as a disaster. Spending $8.4 billion a month on military costs and hundreds of millions more to fund reconstruction efforts is an utter waste of American financial resources. Yet, even though the American people are clearly against this war and the results of the November election were largely driven by the unpopular war, we have a President how is escalating troop levels and sending them into a civil war. Dems are not really doing much to stop it. If they believe it is right - then support the President. If they don't, they should take strong action against the President. Of course, the same should be the case for Republicans.

For folks in both Parties, now is not a time for nuanced votes. It is clear that the overwhelming majorities of House members and senators are against the escalation (both Dems and Republicans) - but they are pussy-footing around trying to stake out "safe" positions so that they can get re-elected. That is cowardice at a time when leadership is needed. We'll see what happens.

Senate Republicans Stop Minimum Wage Increase

You've got to hand it to those crazy Republican senators. The minimum wage increase passed through the House, but Senate Republicans filibustered to keep it from coming to a vote on the Senate floor. The votes are there to pass the increase, but a minority of Republican senators held up the vote.

So much for allowing "up-or-down" votes on important issues. I bet the Senate Republicans who successfully used a filibuster to kill the vote are glad they didn't install the "nuclear option" last session to make filibustering virtually impossible. The Republicans are proving their hypocrisy yet again.

Rex - Phil Simms Comparison

Very interesting piece about the similarities between Rex Grossman and Phil Simms.

The numbers are amazingly similar. Simms and the Giants were 14-2 and Simms played inconsistently all year. However, in the Super Bowl he was awesome. That is what people remember.

Just like Simms, Grossman has a chance at greatness. Simms delivered, we'll have to see on Rex.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Bushie's State of the Union Speech

My analysis of his words and delivery last night - weak, confusing, and just more of the same nonsense.

I watched the speech and was just amazed that he started with domestic policy issues and rolled out the same old tired talking points about energy independence and health savings accounts.

When he talked about reigning in government spending and cutting the deficit, I laughed out loud. This is a President who has increased government spending, discretionary and non-discretionary spending by a record amount, the budget deficit, the trade deficit, the current account deficit, and the national debt by a record amount. His record has been a joke on fiscal discipline.

But really, in the end, none of that mattered. The country is most interested in addressing the Iraq debacle. About 30-40 minutes in, he started talking about Iraq and again tried to link Iraq and 9/11. It was a confusing and very weak effort. He talked about Hezbollah, Sunni insurgents, and al Qaeda as if they were all the same thing. To uneducated Americans who don't know the difference it reinforces their ignorance. However, it does not serve the national interest to confuse people about who our enemy is.

The first part of the speech was an effort to change the subject away from Iraq. When he did finally get to Iraq, he offered nothing new and, even worse, he did not demonstrate any clarity about who our enemy was. I came away from the speech completely unimpressed.

I will say this, when Bushie came to office he said he would be a uniter and not a divider. It looks like he is uniting Dems and Republicans alike in their opposition to his failing strategy for Iraq.

Good Op-Ed in today's Post by Harold Meyerson.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Bears Notes

Indy is a 7-point favorite. Probably fair given the difference between the AFC and NFC this year. I sense that Peyton is pretty relaxed after getting through to his first Super Bowl. The Bears are going to have to get a great effort out of their D and their running game just to slow down the Colts. We'll see.

Tank is going to be able to travel out of state for the Super Bowl. That is good news for the D.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Rex and Lovie

It is great to see loyalty pay off. There is little question that Rex has faced a great deal of adversity (critics's jabs and the wrath of fans). Obviously Rex brought much of it on himself with erratic play, but he is a young guy with a big arm, who is well liked in the locker room. In this age of instant gratification and little patience in big-time sports, it is great to see loyalty, faith, and trust.

Lovie never wavered because the Bears just kept on winning, Rex had the respect of his teammates, and he proved that he could win games with his arm. I really believe that the Bears are a great team because the players and coaches all really like each other and believe in each other. That is why the Bears are going to the Super Bowl.

Indy

Great AFC Championship game. It was great to see Dungy and Manning get over the hump. It was the biggest comeback in AFC or NFC Championship game history. I thought Dungy was very humble after the game (which was true to form). Peyton looked like he was just relieved.

I will say that the Patriots really surprised me by abandoning the run in the second half. With the lead and in a close game throughout the second half, the Pats only rushed 5 times. That made it easier for the Colts to come back because the clock did not run down.

I like the Super Bowl matchup with the AFC's best offense against the NFC's best defense. My early thought is that defense wins championships. The Bears D will come to play and the Bears running game is going to tear through the Colts D. That should help limit the Colts offense. But, I will do my reading and look at the stats before making an official pick.

Chicago Bears

Going into the game I was shocked at how few "experts" thought the Bears would win. The numbers simply did not support the amount of love the Saints were getting. Not surprisingly (at least not to me), the Bears dominated and proved they are the best team in the NFC.

Couple of thoughts:

Rex played an efficient game. He had guys drop a lot of passes, but he threw away a bunch of passes to avoid sacks. When the Bears needed him to come up big in the second half with the score 18-14, he did.

Thomas Jones had a great day. The second quarter drive where he carried 8 straight times and punched it into the end zone was huge. His TD run late in the fourth quarter was the final nail in the Saints coffin. Benson was solid, ran hard, and got his TD, but TJ really makes this team go.

The offense was good, but the game was won by the defense. The vaunted Saints running game was completely shut down. Brees had his passing yards, but he was pressured and the Saints had 4 turnovers. The safety came at a big time.

Reggie's play was a great one, but turning around and taunting Brian Urlacher and the Bears D was not cool - it certainly seemed to spark the defense which dominated the rest of the game. After that play, which came early in the second half, the Saints had about 120 yards in offense, a safety, a fumble, and an interception.

Great year for the Saints and it is a great story, but the Bears were clearly superior. In fact, they have been the only consistent winner in the NFC and they belong in the Super Bowl.

One of the best columns I have read about the game comes from Dan Wetzel - it really captures the win.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Playoff Picks

30-11 on the year with my picks.

Bears. My Bears are being completely disrespected by the national media. Obviously the Saints are a great story and are the darlings of the remaining teams given all of their struggles last year. But, I have found the analyses of the "experts" to be sorely lacking. The numbers down the stretch favor the Bears and not the Saints, but you would think the Bears limped into the playoffs and are lucky to be in the NFC Championship game given the things that are being said and written about the team. I think the Bears D will dominate the very potent Saints offense and the Bears will win by at least 2 TDs. Bears 31 - Saints 13.

Colts vs. Patriots. Peyton will get over the hump and beat the Patriots in a tight game. 24-21 Colts.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

NFL "Expert" Picks

Looks like the overwhelming number of "experts" are picking the Saints to win in Chicago this week. It is unbelievable how little respect the 13-3 Bears are getting. That is OK, they will prove themselves on the field.

Mike Vick may have some trouble

Apparently he was trying to sneak something on a plane in his water bottle. It may have been drugs. We'll see.

Bears Notes

The anticipation is growing and there is a feeling among Bears players that they are being disrespected as a lot of people are talking about the Saints and the AFC teams as being better (sound familiar JKD?). The loss of Tommie Harris and Mike Brown to injuries this year has no doubt had an impact on the Bears D. But I think all of the questions are starting to get to the players and I expect a big effort this week.

On Sunday we'll see who is better.

Also, there was a good article in today's Post about the 2-back tandem of TJ and Cedric Benson. It seems to be working well. Redskin fans may like the idea for CP and Betts (although CP's cap number is extremely high).

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Foreign Control of U.S. Debt

Bushie's economic policies have pushed the amount of the U.S. national debt owed to foreigners up to a new record of $2.2 trillion - half of which is owed to Japan, China, and OPEC nations.

Under Clinton, we were paying the debt down and when Bushie took office it was at about $1 trillion. To pay for his Iraq disaster and his record deficits, Bushie is borrowing from foreign countries. We will have to pay this money back with interest and it will fall on future presidents and future generations of Americans to figure out how.

Iraq Musings

I have cut down on some of the politics postings here and have chosen to talk football. Today I thought I would put up a couple of Iraq-related thoughts.

1. More than 3,020 American soldiers have been killed in Iraq, the violence is rising and after 4 years there is no end in sight.

2. Bushie's "surge" is nothing more than an escalation of the war. He is just digging us further into the bloody mess that he has created. He is sending over another 20,000 troops to Baghdad. To put this in perspective - there are about 40,000 police officers in New York City. Sending 20,000 into a civil war that is raging in a city with a population of 5 million is going to do very little. If he actually wanted to send more troops to stem the violence he would need more like 100,000 to 150,000.

3. Bushie's "new" plan also calls for sending $1 billion in new taxpayer money to give to Iraqi companies that hire Iraqis so they can build their job base and rebuild their country. I can think of a lot of American cities that could use that money.

4. The bottom line is that unless there is miraculous progress by July 4 - that is the target date for the Dems to open up debate on the military budget for next year - Republicans in droves are going to join w/Dems to call for an end to Bushie's Iraqi misadventure. They are leaving right now, and certainly you do not see a lot of widespread open support for Bushie's plan within his own party. But party defections will grow as summer rolls around. Just watch.

5. Bushie's latest poll numbers put him at 35 percent approval.

Day 1954!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Bears and Other Football Thoughts

I'm back after about a week away.

I loved the Bears game. Drama with a great ending for Bears game. Good Rex showed up and the D made plays in the second half and in overtime when they had to. Of course Gould was clutch with the game-tying and game-winning field goals. I don't care how they do it - just win baby! That is what the Bears do.

I expect the D to stiffen quite a bit and play an inspired game this week. But we will see.

Didn't see the Ravens game so I cannot really comment on the game itself. However, it is nice to see Dungy get his D going again.

Saints did what they had to and they are a nice story, but I think their run comes to an end in Chicago.

Chargers. Holy cow, they snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. The bottom line is this - the dude who committed the 15-yard unnecessary roughness penalty was an idiot. The Charger coaches were idiots for only getting LT 9 touches in the second half in a close game - that is just plain stupid. Playing one-on-one press coverage on 3rd and 10 at the NE 35 yard line, with under 3 minutes to go, and without any safety help, was just plain stupid and resulted in the 50 yard gain that led to the winning field goal. The Chargers wasted a ton of time on their final drive. Then, there was no way the 54-yard field goal attempt to tie the game at the end was going to work. They should have tried a quick out pattern to get at least 5 more yards and then kick. They had 8 seconds which would have been tight but if you throw it right away it is either complete or out of bounds and you can still kick. Bad plays, bad execution, bad coaching, and a bad result for the Chargers.

I am really looking forward to Sunday.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

NFL Picks

I won't be blogging for a couple of days, but I wanted to put my weekend NFL picks up and on the record.

28-9 in my picks this year.

Seattle at the Bears. This is the only game I really care about. I don't care if I get all the other picks wrong - I just want this pick to be right. The Bears should be able to handle the banged up Seahawks at home. With Rex it is feast or famine. Hopefully he will feast and he will get on a three-game roll. I expect the Bears to get a solid win.

Philly at the Saints. The Saints offense will roll and the Saints' improbable run will continue to the NFC Championship game.

Indy at Baltimore. The Indy defense will be overrun by a mightier Ravens offensive line. Peyton will have his troubles and Baltimore will advance.

Patriots at Chargers. This may be the best game of the weekend. I like the Chargers, but I expect Belichek to come up with some defensive wrinkles that confuse Rivers. But in the end, I expect LT to carry the Chargers forward.

Again the home teams will hold serve. Enjoy the games!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

B.S. BCS Championship

The Buckeyes blew it for themselves and the BCS. Don't get me wrong, Florida played a great game and may very well be the best team in the country. But, with the only undefeated team in the country being Boise State, I feel like something is missing for Florida. Given the way Ohio State played, had Boise State been given a chance to play them, they may very well have won. I am sure USC and LSU would have beaten Ohio State last night also, Florida was just the lucky one to be able to play them.

I don't really blame Tressel for the 4th down call - I am sure I would have punted, but he wanted to try to build a little momentum. I can understand that. The long layoff and Ted Ginn getting hurt didn't help. Florida won the field position battle and had a lot of short fields. But the bottom line was that the Ohio State offensive line was just thoroughly abused by Florida's defense - even when they were not blitzing.

So, yet again, the BCS fails to deliver a satisfactory national championship game. In fact, last year was the only year I can think of where I had confidence in the result.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Bushie's Leadership

Real-time video of 9/11 and what Bushie was up to in the elementary school while all Hell was breaking out. And this is the guy some people think is a great leader. Remember this video and the fact that he has been "stay-the-course" in Iraq while all Hell has broken out there, when you listen to him speak this week about his "new strategy" for winning in Iraq.

Day 1945!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Playoff Football Thoughts

4-0 in my picks this weekend.

No surprise with the Patriots. The Eagles were pushed by the Giants - but they seemed to have things under control.

The Colts defense must have gotten sick of everyone saying they suck and that Larry Johnson is going to steamroll them. They played a great game and if Peyton can cut the interceptions they should give the Ravens some trouble.

Clearly the best game, in terms of drama, was the Seattle-Dallas game. The three quarters looked like a pre-season scrimmage with the sloppy play. The fourth quarter was just unbelievable. The big plays and drama were awesome and the stop by Tatupu to hold Whitten a half yard short on the third down play at the 1 yard line was great, but the play by Babineaux to catch Romo from behind on the botched field goal was even better. Great game.

For their effort, the Seahawks live on and have a date in Chicago. I love the NFL.

Day 1944!

Friday, January 05, 2007

Bushie's "New" Iraq Strategy

Basically Bushie is going to stick with "Stay the Course" but since his generals in Iraq don't think more troops will help, he has decided to replace the generals.

It is amazing - the two top generals in Iraq don't want more troops, the Joint Chiefs don't want to send more troops, the American people don't want to send more troops, and the Iraqi people don't want to see more American troops - but Bushie thinks he knows better. He is like a stubborn child, except that his inane decisions are directly leading to the deaths of thousands.

NFL Playoff Picks

24-9 in picks this year.

KC at Indy. Larry Johnson will do his thing, but so will Peyton. Indy wins.

Dallas at Seattle. Seattle at home.

Jets at New England. Brady and New England

Giants at Philly. Philly.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Gibbsy's Blog

You want some insights into what the coach is thinking? Just go to Joe Gibb's Online Journal.

You will be uplifted by Gibbsy's love of Christ and you can even request a "Gibbs Bible." All hail St. Joe!

Redskins Analysis

Here is a funny analysis of the Redskins game against the Rams from a post over at La Canfora's blog.

The Rams game. They ran....a lot. They passed....a lot. Sean Taylor wiffed....a lot. They scored...a lot. We scored...our guts out. We pre-gamed our guts out.....We national anthemed our guts out...We showered our guts out...Nobody drank out of a Gatorade cup harder than that group of guys in Burgundy and Gold...even though we lost, we'd go anywhere with that group of guys (except maybe to a football game!)....

Clearly done in a Gibbsy voice. The bottom line is that nothing really matters if you lose. Unfortunately, the Redskins are simply one of the worst teams in the NFL and will be a dormat for some time.

Really, this team is close to winning. All they need is a new defense, they just need to cut the penalties (which is coaching), and they need depth at most positions because injuries happen (which requires some draft picks and a personnel department that actually knows what it is doing). Besides that, the team is really close.

More on Tank

FYI, there is no fuss in Chicago about the new revelations about Tank's arsennal and ammo dump. The Tribune and the Sun-Times didn't even mention it. It is no big deal.

Both papers talked about Rex needing to play better and the Trib talked about more aggressive practices with the first-team defense going up against the first-team offense. The Sun-Times talked about the Bears becoming more business-like now that the regular season is over. They haven't played a meaningful game in about a month. I fully expect the Bears to be ready to roll next week.

Tank is an Idiot

Hopefully Tank Johnson has made some changes in his life. I don't care that he had a lot of guns and ammo in his house, but I do have concerns about how he maintained his weapons. He is an idiot for having a semi-automatic rifle with 19 live rounds in his bedroom and a loaded .45-caliber handgun under a leather chair in the basement.

He lives with two small kids and has a problem with alcohol (and probably pot). All kinds of bad things could happen with the careless way in which he handled his guns. His situation was an accident waiting to happen.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Lovie is Exuding Confidence

Bears enter the playoffs on a low note. After the debacle against the Packers, Lovie met the press yesterday and exuded confidence.

"There's a reason why we won 13 games this year; we're a good football team. Next game we play, we're going to show that."

I love it, and I am confident that Lovie knows what he is doing. Of course getting some rest and getting starting safety Todd Johnson and starting corner Charles Tillman will certainly help.

Matt "I'll never quit" Millen

Holy cow! After yet another disasterous season Matt Millen will be back. He still has 4 years left on his contract. What will it take for the Ford family to get rid of the guy? In the 6 years he has been at the helm, the Lions are 24-72.

Iraq War Casualties

December was the deadliest month for American soldiers in over 2 years. We have now had more than 3000 soldiers killed. Still no end in sight and no clear goal for Americans to fight for.

Day 1940!

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Boise State

For anyone who did not see the Fiesta Bowl last night, try to watch the highlights. It will probably be on ESPN Classic as an instant classic this week.

I was just amazed by what happened. Boise State opened up an 18 point lead in the third quarter after returning an interception for a TD. Then it seemed like they got overly conservative and allowed the Sooners to get back into the game. Oklahoma scored the game-tying TD and two point conversion with a little over a minute left in the game. So you figure the game is probably going to overtime.

What happens next is just a complete shock - Boise State throws an interception that gets returned for an Oklahoma go-ahead TD with about a minute to play. Now all looks lost for Boise State. But Boise had a minute and one timeout. On fourth and 18 at the 50 yard line, and with just 18 seconds remaining, the game is essentially over. But no! Boise pulled off a miracle. They completed a 20 yard pass which the receiver flipped back to another streaking receiver running the opposite way - the old hook and lateral. The result is a 50-yard TD. Tie game, going to overtime.

In overtime, Oklahoma's All-American running back Adrian Peterson made it look easy. First play of overtime he runs 25 yards for a TD. Boise State struggles but on a gadget play on 4th and 2 from the 5 yard line they score a TD. Rather than kick the extra point, Boise State goes for 2 and pulls out a perfectly executed "Statue of Liberty" play. Boise State wins. Awesome.

Then, after the game, Ian Johnson, the Boise State running back who rushed for over 100 yards, scored a TD and the game winning 2-point conversion got down on his knee after his post-game, on-field interview immediately after the game. He then proposed to his cheerleader girlfriend, who happily accepted the proposal. Man, that was great television. A great game and some human drama afterward.

I cannot imagine the national championship being any better.

I also think that Boise State deserves a shot at Ohio State, should the Buckeyes win. If Florida wins, I firmly believe that Boise State should be the national champion - they would be the only undefeated team. Unfortunately that will never happen and we will never know if this undefeated Boise State team is in fact the best in the country. All because we have the corrupt and highly flawed BCS system.

Good Summary of the Redskin Problems

La Canfora had a great piece about the Redskins personnel/front office issues in yesterday's Post. It is a long article, but it really gets into some details.

Today, the story of the conflicting views of Saunders and Gibbs is revealed and discussed.

However, the 5-11 season is now in the past and the real problem is the salary cap issues the Redskins now face.

You Redskin fans may just be thinking that I am bashing. That is not my intent - the bottom line is that until the Redskins clean up their organization they will always be bad (mediocre at best).

Monday, January 01, 2007

Bears Thoughts

There is no question that there is concern in Chicago. Grossman's horrible first half does not provide a lot of confidence. The fans in Chicago are not going to accept anything short of an NFC Championship. My feeling is that if the Bears don't make the NFC Championship game and play well, it will be a major disappointment.

The Bears, Rex, Lovie, etc. can quiet all the critics and secure the love of the fans by winning. There is nothing that they can say or do other than winning to change any opinions. If they lose, then the criticisms will be warranted - if they win all will be forgotten.

I do think that two weeks of rest will help the Bears - particularly on defense. Rex just needs to get his act together and recognize that he has to avoid the turnovers. Let the playoffs begin!

Final Bears and Redskins Stats

I missed last week - sorry. These are the final stats for the 2006 season.

DEFENSE:

Bears - #3 scoring defense (15.9 pts/game), #5 defense in terms of yardage/game (294 yds/game).

Redskins - 27th-ranked scoring defense (23.5 pts/game), 31st-ranked defense in terms of yardage/game (356 yds/game).

The Bears allowed 7 rushing TDs this year (tied for #2). The Redskins allowed 9 rushing TDs (tied for #4).

OFFENSE:

Bears - #2-ranked scoring 0ffense (27 pts/game), 15th-ranked offense in terms of yardage/game (325 yds/game).

Redskins - 2oth-ranked scoring offense (19 pts/game), 13th-ranked offense in terms of yardage/game (328 yds/game).