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Chalk Talk


What happened to Bears in Tampa?


Wondering about a player, a past game or another issue involving the Bears? Senior writer Larry Mayer answers a variety of email questions from fans on

How can the Bears play great offensively against the NFL's No. 1 defense and then play terribly against one of the league's worst defenses? The offensive line had everyone back to start the game, but was terrible in pass protection. I certainly did not see the fire in the Bears that was evident against the Vikings.

Trinity, Florida

That's a great question and certainly one that seems impossible to answer because there's really no way to explain how the Bears dominated the Vikings and then got destroyed by the Buccaneers. I really don't think a lack of fire or intensity was the problem in the first half; it had more to do with committing four turnovers. The Bears were moving the chains on offense and playing fairly well on defense, but they were giving the ball away at an alarming rate. In the second half, I do think that it's fair to question the effort, especially with an offense that gained only two yards on 12 plays while going three-and-out on four straight possessions.

With Alshon Jeffery getting suspended, I was wondering who were the last Bears players to be suspended as a result of the drug policy and how much longer they played for the Bears.

Tony G.

You don't have to look too far in the past. Defensive end Ego Ferguson and offensive tackle Tayo Fabuluje both drew four-game suspensions last November for violating the NFL policy on performance enhancing substances. Ferguson was already out for the season with a knee injury, while Fabuluje had only played sparingly in four games. Ferguson is on injured reserve again this year with a shoulder injury. Fabuluje was waived in June.

Are there any good quarterback prospects to take in the first round of the draft?

Homewood, Illinois

There's a long way to go until next year's NFL Draft, which probably explains why there's such a disparity of opinions at this point. For example, ESPN's Mel Kiper has only one quarterback in his list of the top 25 prospects with North Carolina's Mitch Trubinski at No. 13. On the other hand, Sports Illustrated has four quarterbacks among its top 35 prospects: Clemson's DeShaun Watson at No. 2, Miami's Brad Kaaya at No. 17, Washington State's Luke Falk at No. 27 and Texas Tech's Pat Mahomes at No. 35.

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