I loathe preseason football, even if the Chicago Bears are playing. It might be the biggest tease that comes every a year.
There are guys on my television wearing football gear. They're definitely on a football field. There's even a pigskin out there. But what in Sam Hill are those guys doing with it?
Preseason football kind of looks like a football game, but it really isn't. It's not even a satisfying exhibition. It's barely a decent practice session as the coaches can't work on specific needs unless the game dictates them. Besides, watching guys battling for a roster spot playing sloppy football really isn't any fun to watch.
Even the all-important third game on the preseason schedule - the one where the team's starters might play a full half - is brutal to watch. The coaches are still trying out some new plays, while trying not to show all their cards. Meanwhile the guys on the field are playing about three-quarters speed so they don't get beaten up too badly before the games mean something.
There's always talk of a few guys to watch coming out of training camp during a preseason game. I keep hearing wide receiver Joe Anderson might be a guy to watch. I hear offensive tackle Eben Britton could revive his career in a Bears uniform. They might look good on a practice field, and maybe even look great playing against an opponent's third stringers, but let's get real. A lot of these guys who are getting some buzz aren't going to do anything of any significance come Sept. 8 when the Bears host the Bengals, except maybe on special teams.
The first preseason game for the Bears isFriday night. The starters, with the exception of a few, will see very limited playing time. A lot of the guys we will be seeing on the field for the majority of the game will be back driving trucks, working deep fryers or stocking shelves at a nearby Target store by Labor Day.
But when a team gets a new head coach, has a new offense to test out and so many new faces, it's hard not to feel at least a little bit intrigued about what's going on with the Bears.
What's a Marc Trestman offense look like? Is it going to be weird to watch the Bears trot out a West Coast offense? How is the offense absorbing the new playbook? What can Kyle Long do out there? Have they filled holes at linebacker?
Yes, these questions do intrigue me. But then again, I have to remind myself that these questions will most likely be left unanswered during preseason football, because it's not a real football game.
Still, this year, the preseason that is typically citronella to this mosquito might become that bug zapper - just too alluring and attractive, even though I know it will bite me.
by Casey Moffitt