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Pernell McPhee tells Bears defense to stay pissed

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Coming off a bye week, the Bears (2-6) theoretically don't have much to play for. The same cannot be said for their opponent, a 3-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers team that is desperately trying to climb back into relevance in the NFC South.

But Bears linebacker Pernell McPhee doesn't want his unit giving any free passes.

"Monday, I told the guys the main thing was to stay pissed off," McPhee said, via ESPN.com. "Guys need to know where we are and where we can go. The sky's the limit; only thing we've got to do is stay focused."

Sunday's game will be just McPhee's second back from the PUP list, and first where he'll potentially get real starters snaps. In a win over the Vikings, he got one sack over 25 snaps.

The matchup should tell us whether or not the Bears plan on being a doormat for the rest of the season, or if they could be a fascinating spoiler down the stretch. McPhee was able to wreak havoc on a broken down Vikings offensive line two weeks ago and could potentially do the same against a Buccaneers front that doesn't have much to write home about outside of Demar Dotson and Ali Marpet.

McPhee's presence alongside John Fox's coaching has been the only fear factor for opposing teams over the last two seasons. The Bears have a chance with this game to climb into the NFL's top 10 best defenses in terms of total yards allowed per game. They are 14th in points allowed (22.4) and are one of the least penalized units in the sport.

Should this continue, it might help wipe away some of the bitterness heading into a rough offseason review for Fox and the rest of the Bears coaching staff. Stay pissed, indeed.

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