Matt Eberflus: Bears need to show passion, emotion in games

·3 min read

Eberflus: Bears need 'passion and emotion' in game originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

A lot went wrong in the Bears’ loss to the Packers on Sunday Night Football, so the coaches and players will be busy correcting many things this week, before hosting the Texans in Week 3. But after going over the tape, Matt Eberflus believes the Bears will have to correct something that has nothing to do with Xs and Os, or technique.

“We have to look at performance for what it is,” Eberflus said. “The tricky thing about football is that there’s emotion involved in it. There’s intensity involved in it. So you have to have that. You cannot be a robot. We have to have passion and emotion inside the game.”

After the opening stages of the game, the Packers started to get in a groove. From that point forward, it looked like Bears players were moving in slow motion as Packers flew past them, both on offense and defense. There wasn’t the same intensity or urgency that we saw in Week 1.

In his post-game press conference, Eberflus said he wanted his players to sit with the bad feelings of the loss under his 24-hour rule, just like he wanted them to enjoy the good vibes coming off the Week 1 win for 24 hours.

“When you have adversity like this, it stings and it hurts,” Eberflus said after the game. “You have to soak that in.”

Of course, the Bears have technique issues that they’ll have to clean up, too. There were missed tackles all over the field. Players were taking poor pursuit angles, and not following their assignments at times. Eberflus said the fundamental things he and his coaching staff have been teaching since Day 1 need to improve. Eberflus also said he believes his defense can bounce back quickly.

“It’s about the fundamentals of it, but more importantly or as important, it’s about determination,” Eberflus said. “It’s about the front seven really committing to it, the linebackers and D-line and the secondary, about them committing to not giving up the big play in the running game.”

It’s only been two games, but we can clearly see how the Bears can script themselves a victory. They must play a clean game, and they must play complementary football. When the defense gives the offense a field position advantage, the offense can capitalize with points. But to give the defense an advantage, they must stop the run, as Eberflus said. When the Bears manage to get their opponents in 3rd-and-long situations, their pass rush has been able to deliver with a key pressure or sack, for the most part. When they get into 3rd-and-short situations, it’s been harder for them to get off the field. Overall, they’ve allowed opponents to convert 50% of their third downs, and that’s too much for any team, let alone a team with struggles on offense.

We’ll see if they’re able to make the necessary changes, both from a technique standpoint and from a passion standpoint, to get back in the win column against the Texans.

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