Games that looked winnable at the beginning of the year are quickly turning into question marks. The Bears are entering the most important stretch of their schedule. Including Sundays game at Atlanta, Chicago's next five games are against teams that finished under .500 last season. However, four of those teams (Atlanta, Cincinnati, San Francisco and Cleveland) have winning 2-1 records with Arizona the only exception at 0-2.
If Chicago is going to be a playoff contender the team must go at least 3-2, if not 4-1 against the supposed weaker teams. James "Big Cat" Williams isn't taking anything for granted.
"Yeah, that's we said about Philadelphia, New Orleans and Baltimore last year," he said. "We have to come out every week ready to play, you know any given Sunday isn't that what they say. Any given Sunday anything can happen."
Still Williams is talking about the team being in playoffs and beyond. "Our goal is to win the Super Bowl," he said. "You know Baltimore has come up, the Rams were nobody's before they came up and why can't we do that. Why can't we go from a 5-11 season and come back and win the Super Bowl.
"There are a lot of people of don't believe that we're good enough to do what we're doing. They think it's all a fluke. They think, you know all right the Bears had one good game they'll be the same old Bears next week. We don't want to be like that."
The Bears haven't been 2-1 since 1995 a year in which they finished with a 9-7, but failed to make the playoffs. At this point Greg Blache knows the team cannot rely on what they did against the Vikings to carry over against Atlanta.
"This is the most important game we play right now," Blache said. "The Minnesota game for us is history. But the one thing when you draw that line in the dirt, it stays. They don't erase. That line's still in the dirt and if somebody else crosses that line, you've got to have them pay the same consequences. That's the problem when you draw a line in the dirt; you've got to defend it as long as you're drawing breath and right now we're still breathing. We ain't done yet. That line's in the dirt and when we go down there, we'll defend it.
"This football team has done nothing. We've won one game, and there are a lot of games left to play. If a guy out there thinks that we've done something, they're kidding themselves. It goes back to something I said months ago about being Spam eaters. If you're satisfied with one win in this league, you don't belong in this league. You should just go do something else where one's enough. We've got a lot of games to play and this is our biggest ballgame. There's nothing else that's as important for us as going to Atlanta and play as well as we can."
A win against the Falcons will go along way towards this team making a playoff run. After going to Atlanta the Bears will have four of their next five games at home. The Cardinals are bad team that will likely be among the leagues worst. The Bengals, who beat the Ravens in week two, will be a test on the road. Chicago then hosts San Francisco, Cleveland and Green Bay. The 49ers and Browns are improved, but those are both winnable games, which means the November 11th matchup against Green Bay could have on the line besides bragging rights.