Chicago Bears: Remember The Titans?

Tab BamfordSenior Writer ISeptember 11, 2009

PITTSBURGH - SEPTEMBER 10:  Safety Troy Polamalu #43 of the Pittsburgh Steelers gets a penalty for holding the face mask of tight end Bo Scaife #80 of the Tennessee Titans during the second quarter of the NFL season opener at Heinz Field on September 10, 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Much has been made in the days leading up to the 2009 NFL season about the Chicago Bears.

Whether it's new quarterback Jay Cutler and the circus that surrounded his Denver departure, or the apparent lack of a big play receiver, or the health of the secondary, there has been no shortage of reasons to talk about this group of Bears before they even step on the field.

Another story that's been getting some ink lately is the Bears' schedule. It's not easy, and certainly doesn't open in a way that, on paper, makes the road to 2-0 look a lot harder than 0-2 could be.

Cutler's first game under center for the Bears: at Green Bay, in prime time.

Cutler's first home game as the Chicago signal caller came against the defending Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers.

Last night the Steelers opened their title defense by defeating the Tennessee Titans in a well contested overtime game. There was plenty of hitting going on last night, with numerous players leaving the game for some time throughout the game.

One player for Pittsburgh, didn't come back from the locker room after he went down. Safety Troy Polamalu, one of the top hitters in the game who was off to a fantastic start to the season, has was what initially diagnosed as a sprained MCL in his left knee, and will miss at least three weeks.

The Titans' Alge Crumpler made his last name an adjective when he landed on Polamalu's leg after the Steelers blocked a field goal attempt.

The loss of Polamalu had a noticeable effect on the Steelers' secondary, with Tennessee receivers like rookie Kenny Britt finding seams for nice chunks of yardage in the second half.

The Steelers run defense was as strong as ever last night, allowing only 57 yards on 15 carries to speedster Chris Johnson. Getting Matt Forte off against Pittsburgh's run defense is not going to be easy in the home opener.

But given the Bears questionable receiving group, not having to face Polamalu greatly increases the chances for Cutler and the Bears offense to be effective moving the ball through the air. Incorporating Greg Olsen, as the Bears likely will a lot this year, will be easier without Polamalu on the field.

Indeed, Polamalu is the brains and the sword on the Steelers' defense. The fact that he won't be available when the Bears face the Champs in their home opener could be the biggest factor if the Bears win in Week Two.