Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Matt Eberflus Gave Players A Warning Ahead Of Training Camp


Matt Eberflus proves that coaches don’t need to be firebreathers to successfully send a message to their team. Since taking over the Chicago Bears, the 51-year-old has made one thing consistently clear. The standard is the standard. Every single player on the roster will be judged the same way. Expectations for all of them are high. If they aren’t willing to put in the time and effort to get better, then they aren’t likely to stick around much longer.

Nothing illustrated how serious he is about this than his final monologue at the end of mandatory minicamps. Before fielding questions, Eberflus broke down what he saw from practice and how he’s encouraged by the progress being made. However, the praise ended with a clear message to the players. They better not spend the next month and a half slacking off. They will not be getting a warm reception when training camp begins if they arrive out of shape.

Quite the opposite. They might regret doing so.

Eberflus hasn’t dodged this stance from the moment he took over. In his opening press conference, he said that players better be ready to run. He intends to have a fast, well-conditioned football team. Some guys may not like that sort of approach. He can understand why. It’s hard. The demand for energy and intensity is high. Too high for some. He is prepared for certain guys not being able to handle it.

This is unquestionably by design. Championship teams aren’t occupied by players that are mentally and physically weak. They must be able to handle pushing their limits. That is the only way they become great. Lovie Smith understood that. He employed a similar philosophy during his time with the team from 2004 to 2012. Eberflus knows one thing. If guys buy into this approach, good things will happen.

Matt Eberflus understands the fundamental truth of football.

The best-conditioned teams are often the ones that win games. The ones still flying around the field late in the 4th quarter close things out compared to those that are fighting for breath or seem sluggish. All of the great coaches in history understood this. Hall of Fame head coach Jimmy Johnson once made a great speech on the subject to players at the University of Miami.

Matt Eberflus has no intention of letting his team be cowards. He is going to make sure that practices are absolute hell. That way, when games come around on Sundays, they will be easy by comparison. Games will be the reward. That is the entire idea. When players start treating games as a reward for what they went through during the week, winning tends to follow.

The Bears won’t get there immediately.

No amount of great conditioning can overcome a simple lack of talent. This team has several areas to shore up before they’re ready. Still, Eberflus wants everybody to understand the standard from the beginning so that the culture will be established when talent starts accumulating. A well-conditioned team of regular players might win 6-7 games. A well-conditioned team of good-to-great players wins championships.


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Bill Kowalski
Bill Kowalski
Jun 17, 2022 1:14 pm


Bill Kowalski
Bill Kowalski
Jun 17, 2022 1:13 pm

Well-conditioned and well coached teams with average players win more than 6-7 games. They often win the close games that poorly conditioned teams lose. We won 6 games last year with poor coaching and poor scheme. Two “stars” on the team who are now gone didn’t do much last year (Robinson and Mack). Addition by subtraction, coupled with better coaching and better scheme and some new talented players should mean the Bears win 8-10 games this year if their key players are healthy the entire year.

Chuck Farley
Chuck Farley
Jun 17, 2022 11:50 am

It will be interesting to see what kind of medical staff Bears have this season ! This style of training camp and conditioning approach often leads to some types of injuries in particular soft tissue . So what pops up with players and how long do issues last will be important as season goes on ! Lovie had some issues with this to contend with so i wonder will Eberflus as well ?

Gator Joe
Gator Joe
Jun 17, 2022 6:58 am

Condition to be in position. If you can’t get to the right spot in the 4th Q then you lose the down, the series, the game. One thing I loved about the young Lovie teams was the 11 men to the football mentality on defense. If you go back and watch that film it was like a deluge of players attacking to the ball on every play. That, my friends, is going to be fun to watch again, win or lose this year.

Jerry C Richardson
Jerry C Richardson
Jun 17, 2022 5:43 am

When you can run faster, hit harder and are still going strong late in the 4th quarter, then you see the wins pile on over lesser conditioned teams. When your physical conditioning overcomes your talent, and your opponents’ ability to play at the same level of intensity, opposing players find it extremely harder to prevent your success. Physical conditioning creates positive attitude and a winners’ mindset. Thereby achieving the un-achievable becomes possible.

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