Bears' defense still useful despite Urlacher loss 

September, 15, 2009
One might think it's an obvious time for those unfortunate fantasy owners relying on the big, bad Chicago Bears defense to find another option now that Brian Urlacher will miss the rest of the season. One of the league's signature linebackers, Urlacher suffered a dislocated wrist Sunday night, leaving the Bears' defense seeking help and fantasy owners panicking. But as you often will see in this Karablog space, I offer a contrarian point of view.

First of all, one shouldn't panic when it comes to any fantasy defense. Sure, the Bears didn't improve by losing their best defensive player for the season, but it's not all about stopping the other team from scoring points in fantasy football. Hey, I didn't make the rules.

Brian Urlacher
AP Photo/Jeffrey PhelpsBrian Urlacher suffered a dislocated wrist in the first series of the second half Sunday.
The Bears have a long-standing reputation for playing ferocious, mind-numbing defense, but opposing offenses certainly had some fun at the unit's expense the past two seasons. Even with Urlacher and Lance Briggs wreaking havoc on the field, this team allowed 348 and 350 points in 2007 and 2008, respectively, good for only 16th and 15th in the NFL those seasons, respectively. In 2008, the Bears allowed 75 points in two games to the quarterback-deficient Minnesota Vikings and 31 points in a must-win Week 17 finale against the Houston Texans, and finished 21st in the league in yards allowed. Urlacher was there for all of it. So, even before the Urlacher injury, this was not the best defense in the NFL, or even close to it.