Every game is very important for us right now, even more so as the season progresses. The momentum is building week to week. Guys seem more relaxed both on the field and in the locker room.
Having things go your way has a lot of benefit for a team. When good things happen, you want to go out and do whatever you can to keep it that way. Everybody is playing hard but not pressing on the field. There's an increased confidence level and a sense that we can come out ahead.
Personally, I had a good week as I got a new contract from the Bears organization. It means a lot to a player when the management shows that they have faith that you can do the job. This team feels right for me. I think that Chicago is a place where my talents will be utilized and that's gratifying.
Although my home is still in California, I have enjoyed my time so far in Chicago. I was born here and I still have long-standing family ties to this area. I know that being here right now is definitely the right thing for me to do.
The game in Baton Rouge was quite a change for all of us temperature wise. It was nice warm weather and the humidity level was definitely up there. As a player, it is important to pay attention to hydration, to drink your fluids in advance, during conditions like that. That kind of thing can catch up with you when you least expect it and have a great effect on overall energy levels. But I found that as long as I monitored my fluid intake, the heat didn't really affect me that much.
The field conditions were strange because of the game that had been played there the night before. It was kind of mushy and difficult to get good footing. I'm just happy that nobody got hurt.
I feel somewhat more confident against the 49ers this weekend because it is at home, but at this point, every team is going to give us their best shot. You can't take anything or anyone for granted because we're in first place teams are now gunning for us.
We're the kind of team that's going to go in there and grind it out. If you look inside the numbers every game is pretty close. You can run up the score on somebody with our defense forcing mistakes by the other team. Crazy things happen that can make a victory seem easier than it actually was. We want to control games both on the scoreboard and on the field, to look like we have dominated and to actually have dominated.
The more we keep winning, the more we want to keep winning. It's a good way for things to be going. The byproduct of this is that the coaches are taking it easier on us. For the first time there are benches out there on the practice field. That makes a real difference for the players just to have some place and sit and rest. If you can show the coaches that you can go out there and win with the minimal punishment in practice, then they will tend to go easier on you. The more we win the more practice keeps getting scaled down. If we're lucky, by the end of the season we'll just be sitting in the film room for hours and not go out on the practice field at all.
When it comes to looking at schedule, we're in the middle of the ladder right now. But the ultimate goal is always in sight. We aren't looking too far down the road right now, but there is a feeling that if we can keep this going, we should end up in the playoffs.
Brendon Ayanbadejo has agreed to share his observations of life in the National Football League with Bear Report readers. Brendon will be checking in via the website on a weekly basis.