1985 All Over Again?

Coach Nick Saban could only shrug his shoulders Monday when he was asked whether he had brought up the 1985 Dolphins-Bears game to his players, and adding that his players couldn't relate to something that happened so long ago.

But make no mistake: That game will come up this week, if only because the Bears once again are undefeated fairly late in a season) as they prepare to face the Dolphins.

But, like Saban, we just don't see too many parallels because the circumstances are so different.

For one thing, this year's game will be played at Soldier Field, as opposed to the 1985 matchup, which was played at the Orange Bowl.

The Bears also aren't quite as intimidating yet as their 1985 counterparts, one of the greatest teams in the history of the league.

But the biggest difference, by far, is the Dolphins team.

The 1985 Dolphins were 8-4 when they went into that Monday night game against the Bears and they were on a three-game winning streak that would stretch to seven by the time they were done.

That Miami team also had Dan Marino at quarterback. Now, we know Joey Harrington, we like Joey Harrington, but Joey Harrington is no Dan Marino.

That Dolphins team had the weapons to implement a game plan that would counterattack the Bears' fierce blitzing defense.

This year's offense has struggled all season and coming up with anything to salvage a very good Chicago defense is going to be quite the challenge.

The Dolphins will be heavy underdogs on Sunday, much bigger underdogs than they were in 1985, and part of the reason is a Soldier Field crowd that will be loud.

Really, that 1985 game shouldn't have been considered that huge an upset because the Dolphins also were very good that year. This year's Bears might not be as good as those Bears, but the Dolphins are nowhere near what they were in 1985.

If the Dolphins win this Sunday, it will be a HUGE upset, much bigger than what they pulled off 21 years ago.


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