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Lovie Smith has a way with words.
That way is minimal: Smith seems to hate talking, and he especially seems to hate talking about football. This leads to postgame press conferences like Sunday's, when Smith tried and failed to explain why the Bears played so horribly in their 41-21 loss to the Cardinals. Most of Lovie's reasons had to do with "playing football better." The man knows how to speak and say nothing, all at the same time.
But he can't fool us. After five years, we're fluent in Lovie-speak. Here's what Smith was really saying Sunday night:
Quote: "It's the midpoint of the season, we're 4-4, and we do have a lot of football left to go."
Translation: "Yes. We suck. But if I keep repeating this, all of you media types will leave me alone."
Quote: "We're not happy with the way we're playing. Things have to change. But if they do, we can still accomplish our goals."
Translation: "This team has no talent and we're busted."
Quote (on Tommie Harris): We saw the aftermath. Tommie punched a guy and got ejected. That's bad."
Translation: "Have you seen how big Tommie Harris is? I'm not getting in his face."
Quote: "You have to get off on third down. We had plenty of opportunities, but we didn't execute. We didn't make the plays."
Translation: "Our offensive line is a complete failure. We can't move the chain or protect our QB."
Quote: "Whenever you have a play that's unsuccessful, you look at the call, how we played it, personnel, all of the above."
Translation: "Ron Turner is our offensive coordinator. Nuff said."
Eamonn Brennan is a Chicago-based writer, editor and blogger. He is the editor of Yahoo! Sports's college basketball blog The Dagger and a contributor to Inside The Hall. Follow him at his personal site, eamonnbrennan.com, or on Twitter.