Why else would he talk so confidently about the playoffs?
"We're going to make a run at the playoffs," Long told CSNChicago.com. "And if anybody doesn't think that, then get the (expletive) outta here."
There's a few ways to look at this, but let's take the obvious first: Long could be seeing what we're all seeing from the outside looking in. John Fox has the arrow pointing up. Offensive coordinator Adam Gase has gotten through to Jay Cutler -- to an extent -- and the defense is the best it's been since the Lovie Smith era.
While we're not re-writing our power poll just yet, it's fair to say this was not the lay down for the first-round pick team we thought they were a month ago. Credit to Fox and guys like Long for keeping the team afloat after a rough start to the season.
The other part to this is that Long really can't say anything else. Imagine a world -- no matter how refreshing it would be for some -- where players would just come out and say "Yeah, our latest DVOA projections give us a 2.2 percent chance, so really it's about healing up for 2016."
Then again, blind faith and confidence is part of what makes the NFL great. Imagine a world where we could predetermine the playoffs after just eight games. It wouldn't be that fun, would it?