Stop me if you've heard this before.
The Chicago Bears come out of the gate hot, leading some to question whether they might be the best team in the NFC and a legitimate Super Bowl contender, but as the season winds down, a late swoon leaves the Bears on the brink of missing the playoffs altogether.
Granted, wide receiver Brandon Marshall wasn't even a member of the team last year when injuries decimated the offense and dashed Chicago's postseason hopes, but a year later, the Bears have now lost five of their past six games and are once again teetering on the brink.
"Everyone on offense needs to be held accountable, even if it means jobs," Marshall said. "There's no excuse. We still have two games left, there's still hope, but we need to be held accountable."
That loss clinched the NFC North for the Packers, and before cutting questions short, an emotional Marshall continued to rail against the Bears' ongoing struggles on offense, according to Hanzus.
"It's been the same way all year. It's the same thing every single game. We need to be held accountable," he said. "What I got to do is try my best to keep it together and not let this affect me because it's starting to affect me more than it should. And I love this game, I'm very passionate about this game, and right now it's affecting me way too much."
Mind you, Marshall has reason to be upset. For much of the season as the Bears' first 1,000-yard receiver since 2002, Marshall has, for all intents and purposes, been the Bears' passing game. That has resulted in double and sometimes triple coverage.
Will the Chicago Bears Make the Playoffs?
However, at 8-6, the Bears are hardly out of contention, and as the team prepares for road games against the Arizona Cardinals and Detroit Lions, the team badly needs to figure out a way to mollify their star wideout.
This is Brandon Marshall we're talking about. There are two things he's really good at: One is catching the football, and the other is being a royal pain in the behind when he's unhappy. It happened in Denver, and it happened in Miami.
If the Bears want to make the playoffs, they'd better hope it doesn't happen in Chicago.