"Monday Night Miracle": That's what last night's game is already being called. Instant classic? Perhaps not the game; certainly the fourth quarter, a jaw-dropping series of events.
When Tony Kornheiser was talking about the Cards choking away the game, up 23-10 in the middle of the 4th quarter, I pshawed his talk – why piss on one of the most glorious results in Cards franchise history? They were about to seal the most staggering, unexpected win of the 2006 season. Why was he hammering this stale point? Why... --
Then the Bears D. And the fumble recovery for a TD. And the Bears D. And the Devin Hester punt return for a TD. And the Bears D. And the missed FG by the normally money Neil Rackers. And the Bears D.
It doesn't matter that they SHOULD have lost the game last night; they didn't. They weathered a gruesome game from Rex Grossman and the offense and stole one. Teams en route to a one of Those Seasons – a title season – get those kind of wins.
And this one meant more than any of the previous beat-downs the Bears have delivered this season.
What about Leinart? You had to feel for Matt Leinart. On a national stage, he came up huge. He picked apart the Bears defense in a way no one thought he would (or could). I'm willing to join the reformed naysayers who questioned his NFL bonafides: Leinart is legit.
(Hell, after that performance, we can start asking questions like: Should the Titans have taken Leinart? Should the Jets? Should the Raiders? Should the Bills? Should the Texans?)
Grossman stinks it up: Meanwhile, on the other side of the spectrum, Rex Grossman had 6 turnovers. Six! I can't even imagine what his fantasy points situation was, after 4 INTs and 2 lost fumbles. (In my league scoring, Grossman had -10 points.) Yikes. Needless to say, it's possible Grossman's luster wore off last night.
I wonder if any FFL GMs who started Grossman LOST a Monday-afternoon week-winning lead because of him. (OMG, I just checked: The guy IN MY LEAGUE with Grossman was leading his game 49-29 heading into last night. His opponent had Anquan Boldin (+12); this poor schlub had Grossman (-10). A guaranteed win becomes a contender for "Worst Loss Ever."
Dennis Green blows up: After the game, all eyes were on Green's meeting with the media. And he provided the Quote of the Day:
"If you want to crown them, just crown their ass... We let them off the hook." He's not wrong, on either count.
NFL "Flex" TV Scheduling Hearts the Bears: Word is starting to leak out about the negotiations about which games NBC will poach from Fox and CBS to move from Sunday afternoon to Sunday night in primetime. Unsurprisingly, the Bears will be a hot choice (although I predicted after that MNF game in New Orleans a few weeks ago -- with sky-high ratings -- that if the Saints look like they're legit, they should see plenty of Sunday night airtime).
Finally, here's some hilarity: A link to the Comments area for last night's pre-game, mid-game and post-game post about the Bears. Note how the tone changes. Check it out here.