Saturday, September 24, 2011

Too Much Mike Martz


Mike Martz has gone from legend to clown.
Can we all finally agree that Mike Martz is a mediocre and stubborn offensive coordinator? You can blame some of the Bears’ offensive troubles on the General Manager, Jerry Angelo, for being dumb enough to allow the Bears only good offensive lineman, center Olin Kreutz, to walk in free agency over $500,000 when the Bears had the cap room. However, Martz’s offensive scheme has just as much to do with the team’s struggles protecting Jay Cutler. I have been very critical of the hiring of Martz since the beginning and it is time that others take notice of Martz’s faults.

Martz has an offensive system that is extremely effective when he has the right pieces in place, but when he doesn’t, his offense really struggles. Sure Martz’s system was made famous by creating the “Greatest Show on Turf,” but he had at least five Hall of Fame players in Marshal Faulk, Kurt Warner, Torry Holt, Issac Bruce, and Orlando Pace. With that amount of talent, I could have had those guys producing like champs. On top of his great players, he also had Dick Vermeil, who could very possibly also end up in the Hall of Fame, as his head coach and mentor before he took over the head coach job for the Rams.

Since getting fired by the Rams’ for conflicting with the team’s front office, he has had absolutely no success at any of his coaching positions. During his time with the Lions and the 49ers, he helped guide offenses that ranked in the bottom of the league the entire time he was a coach there. While he may not have had a decent quarterback to work with in either of those places, he was hailed as the guy that would be able to coach up those quarterbacks and make them at least decent starters in the NFL. He failed miserably to do that in either city and was quickly fired by both teams.

When Martz was hired as the Bears offensive coordinator, many said that he was just the guy to coach up Jay Cutler, and I said he is just the guy to get Jay Cutler massacred in the pocket. Martz’s system requires that a team has a big play, fast receiver and a very good pass protecting offensive line, of which the Bears have neither. Jay Cutler is forced the sit in the pocket waiting for ineffective receivers to get open while the pocket collapses around him. This is a recipe for disaster, as we have seen most of last season and against the Saints in Week 2. The Saints sacked Cutler six times last week, and hit him seemingly on every other play. It was yet another brutal performance by this terrible offensive line and a horrible job calling the plays by Martz.

The Bears best offensive weapon is clearly Matt Forte, yet they continue to pass to him more than they run him (he ran the ball 10 times and caught 10 passes against New Orleans). He is averaging a healthy 4.5 yards a carry, yet Martz continues to put Cutler at risk of getting hit or sacked in order to pass it to the guy you could be wearing down defenses with in the run game. Martz’s rigidity to change his play calling continues to hurt this team, and their quarterback. Martz needs to change his game plan or else Cutler is not going to last much longer into this season and the Bears will be lucky to make it to .500, let alone again compete for the division title. 

1 comment:

  1. And, now if you look over to your left you'll see a 2001 banner marking the beginning of the end for Mike Martz. It's been all downhill since the Patriots decleated the "Greatest Show on Turf" in Super Bowl XXXVI.

    I still remember riding home and listening on the radio to a defender (I think some no name nickel back) from the Patriots saying: "WE were the greatest show on turf, tonight!"