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Turner keeps his focus on Vikings
By Bob LeGere | Daily Herald Staff

Ron Turner says he's concerned about one thing: Preparing for the Minnesota Vikings.

 

Bob Chwedyk | Staff Photographer

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Published: 11/25/2009 8:06 PM

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Coach Lovie Smith and offensive coordinator Ron Turner have similar ways of ignoring the increased speculation about their job security.

"Minnesota is enough to keep you occupied," Smith said. "You have to stay focused on the task at hand. Any team that is 4-6 right now, they're (getting asked) questions about what's going on on the football field. But things like that really don't affect what's going on. Our day is the same. We're trying to get better each day. We have a big game coming up this week. The focus is just on that."

Turner has taken a lot of the flak for an offense that has turned the ball over too much and failed to take advantage of red-zone opportunities. He has a readily accessible diversion.

"I just look at Minnesota film," Turner said. "I put that film on. I'm not going to think about anything else but Minnesota, and that's where all of my energy and all of my focus has to go. (It's about) how can we get our team better? (We have to) get our guys to perform at a high level consistently and do what they're supposed to do consistently."

Asked if he was concerned about job security, Turner said: "I'm concerned about Minnesota. I'm concerned about playing well and doing what we have to do to win this game. We still have a lot of games left. We win this game, hopefully that can get some momentum going. Really, honestly, that's all I'm concerned about right now."

Talking smack: Jay Cutler was reminded that shortly after the Bears traded for him on April 2, Vikings defensive end Jared Allen said, "Twice a year I'm going to peel the back of his head off the turf."

Cutler didn't take the bait, though.

"I'm not going to peel anything off," he said with a smile. "I played against Jared before (as a Bronco) when he was in Kansas City. Good player, high motor, brings a lot to that defense off the edge there. It's just something that I have to be aware of. The offense has to be aware of doing certain things to take him off his game. But he's a really good player."

Cutler and Allen are actually friendly from their days in the AFC West, and the NFC leader in sacks was laughing when he made the comment, after which he added, "I love the guy, but business is business."

By the numbers: In his last six games against the Bears, Vikings quarterback Brett Favre has thrown 13 interceptions and 2 TD passes. Those games were when Favre was a member of the Packers. The Bears won five of those games and outscored the Packers 138-77. - The Vikings have won the last two meetings with the Bears at the Metrodome and seven of the last eight. - Over the previous six games, the Bears have made 19 trips into the red zone but scored just 6 touchdowns. Bears opponents have entered the red zone 22 times and scored 17 touchdowns.

Injury update: Guard Roberto Garza did not practice inside the Walter Payton Center on Wednesday because of an ankle injury, but coach Lovie Smith was hopeful he would return today.

Defensive tackle Tommie Harris (knee), safety Kevin Payne (back) and tight ends Desmond Clark (neck) and Kellen Davis (ankle) were limited, but all are expected to play on Sunday.