After winning at home in week 4, the Chicago Bears improve to 2-2 on the season with solid performances from rookie quarterback Justin Fields, running back David Montgomery, wide receiver Darnell Mooney, and the Bears defense. Let’s look back at week 4.
1) Head coach Matt Nagy admitted after the game that offensive coordinator Bill Lazor was calling plays. Guess what? Lazor calling plays should be part of the Bears gameplan moving forward. The Bears were efficient on offense, running and passing the ball effectively, being a threat to score on every single play.
2) Fields deep ball was a thing of beauty. A quarterback capable of hitting any throw, Fields connected with wide receiver Darnell Mooney for a 32-yard gain down the sideline with just 10:54 remaining in the third quarterback. The two also connected three times on the Bears first drive for 29 yards. Fields excels at hitting the deep ball and the Bears need to get more explosive on offense, so expect to see more of the Fields-Mooney connection as the season progresses.
3) Shoutout to running backs David Montgomery and Damien Williams. The two combined for 31 carries, 161 yards, and three touchdowns. Montgomery did injure his knee and as we await the results of a scheduled MRI, should the 2019 third-round pick end up missing time, the Bears will turn to rookie running back Khalil Herbert to complement Williams.
4) The Robert Quinn revenge tour continues. Despite being 31-years old, Quinn had five tackles, one sack, one tackle for loss, and two quarterback hits. With 4.5 sacks on the season, Quinn has upgraded the Bears pass rush this season, justifying the five-year, $70M contract the Bears dished out to Quinn in free agency during the 2020 offseason.
5) Can we talk about the sneaky good game that inside linebacker Alec Ogletree had? A late training camp addition, Ogletree has quickly emerged as a solid piece for the Bears defense and totaled 12 tackles and one tackle for loss on Sunday. The veteran is making a strong case for keeping the starting ILB job once Danny Trevathan returns.
6) The Bears did struggle on third down, going just 1-for-8. But as Nagy mentioned in his postgame presser, the Bears did avoid multiple third-and-long situations, which should be considered a step in the right direction. Chicago’s offense is still a work in progress and the Bears can’t afford to make many mistakes, so going 1-for-8 is still better than what the Bears have done in the past.
7) Justin Fields needs to get better at protecting the football. His first and only fumble of the afternoon came in the second half but this is the second time at home this season that Fields has lost a fumble. The 11th overall pick lost one against the Cincinnait Bengals in week 2 but recovered it to save the Bears offense.
8) Chicago averaged 6.5 yards per play on Sunday, the most yards per play Chicago has averaged this season and the highest since week 14 of the 2020 season, when the Bears averaged 6.9 yards per play against the Houston Texans at home in a 36-7 win.
9) Fields credited the Bears offensive line on four different occasions during his postgame press conference and Chicago’s front five rightfully earned it. The offensive line allowed just one sack all afternoon, compared to week three, where the entire unit allowed nine sacks.
10) The Bears were better in the redzone too, scoring on three occasions with four total redzone trips. The field gets harder to defend when a defense is back up against the ball and the Bears took advantage with smart playcalling, running the ball every time Chicago converted.
What about week five?
Week 5 is sure to be interesting. The Bears will travel to Las Vegas to take on the Raiders, with this being the second time both team’s have met since 2019. It’s another Khalil Mack revenge game, considering the Raiders got the best of Mack in 2019 during the last matchup in London.
Bears fans like to make fun of Raiders head coach Jon Gruden for trading Mack back in 2018 but Gruden also has the Raiders offense averaging 30.0 points per game. The Bears secondary will be tested in this game. Quarterback Derek Carr has passed for 435, 382, and 386 yards in three games this season.
The Bears will need to account for the Raiders skill position players, including tight end Darren Waller, wide receiver Henry Ruggs, and running back Josh Jacobs, who is listed as questionable for Monday Night Football against the Los Angeles Chargers.
Chicago does enter another must-win game. Win in Las Vegas and Fields, who could start for the third straight week will enter week 6 against the Green Bay Packers at home with a major boost in confidence. The Bears will have a chance to get to 3-2 before having to play Green Bay and then travel to Tampa Bay in week 7 to take on the Super Bowl champion Buccaneers.