By Brad Biggs
Mike Martz put it on the Bears' coaching staff for not having the offense better prepared to execute in the red zone in Sunday's 19-14 win over the Detroit Lions.
It could have been an easy double-digit victory had the offense been able to push the ball in from the one-yard line. The offense failed on third-and-goal in the first quarter on a Matt Forte run and then the Lions stuffed three Forte runs and a poorly executed play-action pass in the fourth quarter.
"It's always an emphasis," Martz said. "We've always put an emphasis on it. We had two turnovers down there obviously, going in. That's at least six points. When you get down to the one and the opening series doesn't put you in and then the other one, that's a coaching deal. We've been going through all this stuff and our goal line stuff has not gotten the attention that it needs. That's with the coaching.
"I just don't think we did a good enough job of preparing them for what they were going to see. They (Detroit) were a little different than what we thought but we've got to spend more time with them on that too. I'll wear that one. We've got to execute and if we spend more time on it and help them adjust to some of the things that happen, we'll be much better at it. This is me. This was all on me. I blame myself for that thing and all. We did not spend the time that we need to spend on it. We're trying to get all these other things ready. I felt comfortable with where we were on it. We just have to get all the nuances of the goal line down and we can do a better job than that."
With an athletic quarterback and solid, pass-catching tight ends, Martz will look to be more creative next time. He's not worried about the distribution of the ball Sunday at Dallas, though. Much has been made about the fact that Jay Cutler threw to wide receiver Devin Hester just once on Sunday.
"You just don't know who's going to go with those," Martz said. "We didn't go in there thinking we were going to throw a lot of balls (10) to (Devin) Aromashodu. It just happens in the course of a game. We had some things that we were trying to get to and it just didn't work out because one thing happened or another. That's the way it works out. You go in there thinking you're trying to get the guy a ball, and get him going a little bit.
"We tried to give Greg the ball a little bit and it just didn't work out. You just have to be careful about trying to get somebody the ball and you leave trying to win the game. The defense will dictate that too. If the quarterback is doing what he's supposed to do that ball can go anywhere at any time based on the structure of the defense. And that's kind of what happened to us."