All through training camp this summer all I heard about was how great Dez White looked. I was eagerly waiting this year to see the new and improved Dez White hit the field. After dropping a sure touchdown pass against Atlanta, and not doing much yet in this season, I think it is time to see David Terrell. John, when will the Dez White experiment end? --Terry Cvengros, Winthrop Harbor, Ill.
It won't end soon because coach Dick Jauron is a believer in White and stuck by him last year too when White went through some drops and White eventually improved. Right now White is spotlighted because of the dropped TD pass. But this is just Game 2 and Jauron is not one with a quick hook, particularly because White was a clear step better than Terrell and Marcus Robinson in training camp. Not that they're exactly on the same level yet, but should Marty Booker have gotten the hook for the dropped TD pass he had against Minnesota? That was an even easier catch in a game that wouldn't have been as close had he made the catch. Terrell doesn't have QB Jim Miller's confidence the way Booker or even White does at this point. So give White a few weeks. Jauron will.
What, if anything, will the Bears do to protest the horrible job done by the officials in the Atlanta game? Can the average fan make a difference in ridding the league of poor officials?--William H. Thieben, Kewanee, Ill.
There's not much the fan can do about officiating. The Bears can register their official complaint and even send in tape of egregious gaffes. But this is not like baseball where a team can play a game under protest and overturn the result later based on a ruling. The subject is unfortunately not a new problem for the league. This was just one of those times the Bears ran into a situation that has been happening elsewhere.
At the end of the first half and the end of the game, the Bears' defense allowed Michael Vick & Co. to march down the field and into field goal range. Were the Bears in prevent mode, either due to formation or cautious coverage? I can't believe Vick is at his best in the final two minutes of each half, but we made him look so. --J. Kelly, Manhattan Beach, Calif.
The Bears were using a "box rush" in order to contain Vick in the pocket. Despite the impact rushes of Colvin and Urlacher in the second half, the defensive line in general was determined not to let him get loose in the flat. Give Vick some credit here, too. He went to Brian Finneran, a 6-5 wideout with a six-inch height advantage on CB Todd McMillon, for 18 yards. He got free up the middle for 17 yards. He went to Alge Crumpler, a 262-pound tight end with an 80-pound weight advantage on CB Reggie Austin. Colvin and Urlacher stopped Atlanta plunges for no gain, but Vick and Dan Reeves, who designed several plays to create precise mismatches, deserve more credit than the Bears' failures.
What in the world has happened to Paul Edinger? In the Viking game, he had a number of kickoffs that reached the end zone, and in the Falcon game, most went at least to the 5-yard line. Has he beefed up his leg? Has he changed his style? Naturally I'm pleased with the results, but curious about the added distance. --Jack Drummond, West Richland, Wash.
A lot of us would love to be carded at a club by someone thinking we're too young. My guess is that Edinger would love to be accused of using steroids (kidding!). But the fact is that he absolutely did work on strengthening his leg in the off-season, and he did it selectively, not just bulking up in general. He told me he did not make any real changes in his style; the risk there is to tweak something to kick longer and in the process lose some of the accuracy that is the foundation of his game.
Do the Bears have cheerleaders? If not, why, and if so, where are they? --Randy L. Smith, Muscatine, Iowa
The Honey Bears were the Bears' cheerleaders. They're gone and aren't expected back as long as Virginia McCaskey is the true ruler of the team. The idea has been tossed around about bringing them back but it was ultimately thrown out.