Chicago Bears: Holes apparent in week eight loss

Trevis Gipson, bears

In what was deemed a very winnable game for the Chicago Bears in week eight at home, the Bears struggled, failing to put together a complete game in all three phases. Chicago averaged 4.8 yards per play, with rookie quarterback Justin Fields rushing for a 22-yard touchdown on fourth-and-one to give the Bears some life.

The Bears season isn’t necessarily over but Chicago has now lost three straight games to NFC opponents. Since week six, losses to the Green Bay Packers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and now San Francisco 49ers have put the three win Bears on the outside looking in, in the context of a playoff spot.

Sunday afternoon was an eye-opening moment for the Bears as a whole. Through the first seven games of the season, the assumption was that Chicago featured a solid defense while the offense would struggle. Sunday afternoon proved to be different.

The 49ers gashed the Bears’ defense throughout the second half, with multiple throws down the middle of the field late in the fourth quarter. Chicago simply wasn’t playing with enough speed on the defensive side of the ball to warrant slowing down the 49ers’ offense. The Bears pass rush failed to generate any sacks, even with Khalil Mack out

Mack’s absence leads to an important question regarding Akiem Hicks and Robert Quinn, both of whom failed to record a sack on Sunday. How much of Hicks and Quinn’s success in 2021 is the result of Mack’s presence? Mack may not always pad the stat sheet but his impact was felt on Sunday afternoon.

The Bears offense did show signs of life but there wasn’t enough. It’s clear that the Bears aren’t a very good team around Fields, with the inability to execute prevalent from the wide receiver, tight end, and offensive line.

The Bears have a long way to go before being relevant again. Fields provides hope for the future but Chicago’s holes were visible on Sunday afternoon for a team that has struggled mightily in 2021.

Chicago Bears: Will short-handed defense rebound in week eight?

Trevis Gipson, bears

With the Chicago Bears returning home in week eight to take on the San Francisco 49ers, there is a high likelihood that Chicago is without pass rushers Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn. Add in a groin injury for defensive lineman Akiem Hicks and Chicago’s defense could be missing three integral pieces from its front seven.

If Hicks, Mack, and Quinn don’t suit up for the Bears, Chicago will need to rely on depth to beat San Francisco, who is averaging 22.5 points per game, good for 19th in the NFL. While the Bears defense allowed just three points in the second half of week 7 in a loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, another noteworthy stat from week 7 is that Chicago also failed to record a sack for the first time all season.

The Bears are hoping to redeem themselves in a big way on Sunday afternoon. A win against the 49ers on the heels of a solid defensive performance before what is expected to be a tough road matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers would be a confidence booster heading into the bye week.

“You know, that’s part of this NFL, is, it’s a long season and that was week seven and obviously the result wasn’t what we wanted from a team perspective and certainly from a defensive perspective,” said defensive coordinator Sean Desai via the Bears official YouTube channel. “But having said that, there’s also some things that we can build off of, off that tape. And there’s some things of swarm and particularly in the second half where the guys play with tremendous energy and good technique and fundamentals that we’re going to continue to build on.”

Chicago will need to get creative when it comes to putting together a good enough game plan. Can cornerbacks Jaylon Johnson and Kindle Vildor forget a shaky performance where both defensive backs allowed a combined four passing touchdowns while the front seven gets back to sacking quarterback? A win could certainly alter the trajectory of the Bears season.

Chicago Bears: Time for Trevis Gipson to step up

Trevis Gipson, bears

With the Chicago Bears returning home to take on the San Francisco 49ers in week eight, reports have surfaced that the face of the Bears defense, Khalil Mack is unlikely to play due to a foot injury.

To be clear, the Bears have yet to make a final decision on whether or not Mack will be placed on injured reserve. Should the Bears elect to place Mack on injured reserve, the Bears could be without their top two pass rushers on Sunday.

Chicago, whose pass rush is already short-handed with veteran Robert Quinn being on the reserve/COVID-19 list will likely rely on second-year pass rusher Trevis Gipson to fill the void. Expect undrafted free agent Charles Snowden to be called up to the active roster.

With an aging defense, the only silver lining is that Gipson and Snowden will get additional reps, giving the Bears an opportunity to evaluate what young talent of the future is able to do. While Mack is under contract through the 2024 season, the likelihood of Quinn being designated as a post-June first cut in 2022 seems high, especially with the Bears hoping to extend linebacker Roquan Smith, a key face of the defense.

For the first time all season in week 7, a hobbled Mack and banged up Bears defense failed to record a sack. While Chicago is one of the NFL’s leading teams in total sacks, the 49ers do have a solid enough offensive line that will be sure to test Gipson and Snowden.

Gipson’s progression as a rotational player will be under the microscope throughout the rest of the season. Playing just 35 percent of snaps on defense in 2021, the second-year pass rusher has missed 23.1 percent of tackles but racked up two sacks, two quarterback hits, and two tackles for loss.

For the first time in what feels like forever, the Bears defense may not trot out Mack against an opponent, meaning the true mentality of next-man-up will be on display Sunday afternoon at Soldier Field.

Chicago Bears: Week 7 takeaways with Usayd Koshul

Marquise Goodwin, bears

After a blowout loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 7, it’s time for the Chicago Bears to look ahead to week 8. But first, some quick takeaways.

1) Let’s be honest, the Bears gameplan was bad in this one. On the offensive side of the ball, the pass protection was very average, with the coaching staff choosing to start Lachavious Simmons at right tackle instead of Alex Bars, who started eight games for Chicago last season. The Bears need to do a better job of identifying which talent to replace when players go down.

2) Kudos to rookie running back Khalil Herbert, who had his first career 100-yard rushing performance. The 2021 sixth-round pick racked up 18 carries for 100 rushing yards, averaging 5.6 yards per carry. Not bad for a player who’s emerged as a centerpiece for the Bears offense.

3) Allen Robinson and Darnell Mooney were underwhelming. Whether you want to admit it or not, the Bears wide receiver duo has been uninspiring. A lack of chemistry with Justin Fields is the major issue but Robinson and Mooney combined for just four total receptions in week 7. Not the production you want to see from a WR duo that had 163 total receptions a year ago.

4) The Bears had zero sacks this game, marking the first time all season Chicago failed to record a sack. Khalil Mack was injured and while the star pass rusher played, the Bears missed Akiem Hicks and Robert Quinn due to injuries and COVID-19. The Bears hope to get both back and healthy for week 8 to get the defense back up to full speed.

5) There was growth from Justin Fields in this game. Trust me, I spent Sunday night analyzing two losses that showed why Fields progressed, even if it was a little bit. Also, Fields isn’t Mitchell Trubisky 2.0, so let’s quit with that narrative.

6) This was a game that cornerbacks Jaylon Johnson and Kindle Vildor will clearly want to forget. Johnson was beat twice by Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans for touchdowns, while Vildor was beaten by Evans and wide receiver Chris Godwin. Here’s to hoping that both players have a major bounceback game against the San Francisco 49ers.

7) Fields statline is a hot point of debate. The 11th overall pick was 22-for-32 with 184 passing yards, zero touchdowns, and three interceptions. Part of Fields struggles are warranted but stat lines don’t define a quarterback’s progress or growth. Nor are final stats factored into development. Fields continues to make rookie mistakes, which is fine. Would you rather Fields makes mistakes as a rookie or in year three or four, when we’ll have a good read on what Fields is as a quarterback.

8) Bilal Nichols’ punch was unacceptable. For the “Nagy is a players coach” crowd, if Nagy was really a players coach, long-term building blocks like Nichols wouldn’t be out there punching opponents in a game that was pretty much over. Have some respect for the guys in the other uniform and play with discipline, something the Bears have been lacking in 2021.

9) The Bears were never winning this game but losing by 35 points is a bad look. Chicago didn’t even attempt to be competitive, which is an issue since the Bears have now lost to Tampa Bay, the Green Bay Packers, and Los Angeles Rams, three playoff-caliber teams in the NFC.

10) At some point, Matt Nagy needs to acknowledge and understand the Bears are out of options on offense. Chicago needs to solidify the offensive line and it starts by benching Sam Mustipher, who was manhandled by Buccaneers defensive tackle Vita Vea on what seemed like every play. It’s time to switch Cody Whitehair back to center, kick James Daniels out to left guard, and slot in Alex Bars at right guard.

Chicago Bears: Reality now sets in after loss to Packers

The scoreboard may look closer than expected but one takeaway from the Chicago Bears‘ loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday afternoon is the Bears still have a lot of work to do. After opening the game with an eight-play, 80-yard drive that ended with rookie running back Khalil Herbert scoring a one-yard rushing touchdown, the Bears’ offense stalled in the second and third quarter.

With two straight wins, Chicago seemed to be riding a hot hand heading into this week, showing some signs of hope that the Bears could knock off the Packers at home for an upset win. Instead, Aaron Rodgers had other plans in what could be his final game at Soldier Field as a member of the Packers.

Chicago scored just once in the fourth quarter, closing the gap to just three points. Rodgers and the Packers offense would then

While the Bears’ defense did sack Rodgers three times, the Bears’ offense struggled to get anything going when it was just a three-point game. Fields did show some maturation on a 10-play drive in the fourth quarter, hitting wide receiver Allen Robinson and tight end Cole Kmet for 20 and 21-yard passes on back-to-back plays to move the chains.

Rookie running back Herbert was a bright spot on Chicago’s offense. After getting the nod as starter, Herbert rushed 19 times for 97 yards, averaging 5.1 yards per carry. The sixth-round pick broke off a big run for 25 yards to give the Bears some momentum in the first quarter on a drive that would end in a questionable interception by Fields.

Chicago now drops to 3-3 through the first six games for the third time in the last four years under head coach Matt Nagy. The story seems to remain the same for Nagy’s Bears. Over the last four seasons, the Bears have beaten average teams but struggled to get past good teams in the NFC. Losses to the Rams and Packers further prove the Bears have a long way to go in order to close any sort of talent gap in the NFC North.

Chicago Bears: Aaron Rodgers praises the Bears defense

Ahead of the Chicago Bears Week 6 matchup against the division-rival Green Bay Packers, the Bears will welcome Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers to town for potentially the last time. Rodgers, who’s become a defining factor in the NFL’s most storied rivalry over the last few years has seen plenty of Bears defenses throughout his tenure.

Through five games in 2021, Chicago is allowing just 20 points per game, good for 7th overall in the NFL. Pass rushers Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn have combined for 9.5 sacks, while Roquan Smith has 50 tackles. Chicago currently has 18 sacks, leading the NFL while allowing eight yards per pass attempt.

“Yeah I mean they’re a great defense, they’ve always been, been a solid defense over the years,” Rodgers told Packers reporters on Wednesday. “It’s some familiar names who are studs and, and you know Robert Quinn’s having a nice season, getting after the quarterback. Obviously, Khalil (Mack) is still one of the top players in the league. Akiem Hicks, when healthy, is as disruptive as he possibly can be. Roquan (Smith) has emerged as a top-tier linebacker, I mean he’s kind of been in that position since he got in the league but he’s steadily improved every single year. He’s a complete linebacker. Backend is very solid, they’ve got some younger players but they’ve definitely improved and been playing well.”

For Rodgers to praise the Bears defense isn’t anything new but we must also keep in mind that the Bears have beat Green Bay just once since 2018. For many, the Bears drafting Justin Fields, combined with 2021 potentially being Rodgers’ final season with the Packers means a changing of the guard could soon be happening in the NFC North.

Chicago’s defense will look to be competitive on Sunday afternoon and employ a bend-don’t-break type mentality. The Bears may not be able to stop Rodgers entirely, instead the focus will shift to neutralizing Rodgers as much as possible, hoping the Bears offense can complement the defense by moving the football and scoring enough points to win the game.

 

Chicago Bears: Week 5 wrap up, takeaways, and week 6 preview

justin field, bears

With week 5 officially in the book for the Chicago Bears, let’s breakdown everything as Chicago leaves Las Vegas with a win. The Bears are over .500 for the first time since December 27th, 2020, a stat that doesn’t look noticeable to many but should be considered noteworthy as the Bears are on a two-game winning streak.

1) No David Montgomery, no problem for the Bears running game. Running backs Khalil Herbert and Damien Williams combine for 34 carries, 139 rushing yards, and one touchdown. Herbert and Williams averaged 4.1 yards per carry, which means the Bears running game shouldn’t miss a beat with David Montgomery out for the foreseeable future.

2) Speaking of Damien Williams, he’s been a sneaky good option for the Bears as a receiver this year. Williams averaged 10 yards per reception on Sunday, his highest of the season. Williams has continued to be an impact player for the Bears despite playing behind Montgomery.

3) Khalil Mack got his revenge game. The Bears pass rusher was all over the field on Sunday afternoon, quieting any doubters who used sack production as a means of saying Mack was too old or overpaid. The eighth-year pass rusher now has five sacks on the season and was constantly in the face of Raiders quarterback Derek Carr on Sunday, including sacking Carr on a two-point conversion attempt, giving the Bears an eight-point advantage.

4) Linebacker Alec Ogletree seemed to play more than Danny Trevathan, who made his season debut had just three tackles. Trevathan played just 15 percent of snaps on defense, while Ogletree played 52 percent of snaps. Two possibilities exist when looking at Trevathan’s decreased snap count in his season debut: The Bears are easing Trevathan back from a knee injury or Ogletree legitimately played well enough during Trevathan’s absence, impressing the coaching staff enough to hold down the starting job.

5) Safety Eddie Jackson seemed revitalized when speaking to the media during his postgame press conference. The Bears secondary still has communication issues to hammer out but Jackson was clearly proud of the way the Bears secondary performed. Wide receiver Henry Ruggs and tight end Darren Waller had just seven receptions combined.

6) Chicago rushing defense limited the Raiders to just 3.2 yards per carry, just the second time this season the Bears have allowed just under 3.5 yards per carry. The other time was week 1 against the Los Angeles Rams. Despite missing Akiem Hicks in week 5, the Bears rush defense was more than solid, proving that the defensive line is playing at a high level.

7) One area of concern for the Bears is the lack of finishing opponents off. Week 5 marked the third time this season the Bears had the opportunity to put Raiders away but failed to do so. Cairo Santos’ two field goals in the fourth quarter helped but Santos’ first field goal came on the end of a 10 play, 57-yard drive that lasted just over six minutes. Field goals are fine with a lead but touchdowns usually end up being the final blow when putting opponents away for good.

8) Justin Fields threw the ball just 20 times against the Raiders, completing just 12 passes. At some point, the Bears need to open up the offense more and allow Fields to throw the ball more, especially with two tough games against the Green Bay Packers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers coming up.

9) The Robert Quinn revenge tour continues. The 11th-year veteran wasted no time getting involved on Sunday afternoon, tackling Raiders running back Josh Jacobs for no gain on Las Vegas’ first offensive play. Quinn didn’t register a sack but still made his presence felt, consistently generating pressure. Fun fact: Quinn’s play in 2021 has earned him a grade of 75.2 from Pro Football Focus.

10) The Bears are good but not good enough on third down. Chicago converted 46 percent of third downs on Sunday, still eclipsing the Bears season average of 32.75 percent. The Bears do need to improve in this area to ensure the offense can keep stacking up strong performances together.

Looking ahead to week 6

The Green Bay Packers are coming to town and there’s something different about this Bears-Packers matchup. Maybe it’s the Justin Fields effect but the Bears have been playing well enough to warrant hanging with the Packers and making this a slugfest. Green Bay narrowly escaped the Cincinnati Bengals on the road in week 5, with Packers kicker Mason Crosby missing three potential game-winning field goals.

The Bears’ secondary will have its hands full trying to slow down Aaron Rodgers and Packers wide receiver Devante Adams but Green Bay’s secondary is also banged up with star cornerback Jaire Alexander unlikely to play, while CB Kevin King is injured too.

Matt Nagy has never beat Packers head coach Matt LaFleur and the Bears have beaten the Packers just once since 2018. With Rodgers not expected to return in 2022, the NFC North crown is wide open and for a changing of the guard to begin, the Bears will need to come away with a win on Sunday afternoon.

Chicago Bears beat Las Vegas Raiders in Khalil Mack revenge game

justin field, bears, matt nagy

Five weeks into the 2021 NFL regular season, the Chicago Bears are over .500 for the first time since December 27th, 2020. Chicago jumped out to an early 14-3 lead in the first half before stalling in the third quarter. The Bears would then add on two field goals in the fourth quarter, courtesy of kicker Cairo Santos.

Notable moments from the Bears win included rookie quarterback Justin Fields hitting tight end Jesper Horsted for a two-yard touchdown pass, giving Fields his first NFL touchdown. Running back Damien Williams scored again in the second quarter to cap off a 16 play, 86 yard drive that took nearly eight minutes off the clock.

Bears outside linebacker, Khalil Mack, who was acquired from the Raiders for two first-round picks just one week before the start of the 2018 season had a nice revenge game against his former team. Mack totaled eight tackles, one sack, and one tackle for loss. The eighth-year pro made a key stop on the Raiders only touchdown of the afternoon, sacking Raiders quarterback Derek Carr on a two-point conversion attempt.

Rookie running back Khalil Herbert, usually a returner on special teams, had a solid outing as a running back. The sixth-round draft pick rushed 18 times for 75 yards, averaging 4.2 yards per carry. Herbert used extended playing time to prove that he could be a part of the Bears’ offense moving forward, especially with injuries to veterans David Montgomery and Tarik Cohen.

Chicago’s defense was stout on third down, going 5-for-14, including a stop just before the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter. Sean Desai once again called a solid game as veterans like outside linebacker Robert Quinn get involved early and often, setting the tone quickly for a unit that’s continued to stack strong performances on top of each other.

What’s next for the Bears? The Green Bay Packers will come to town for a week 6 showdown. With both teams riding a winning streak, Bears-Packers next week is sure to provide plenty of entertainment.

Chicago Bears: Week 4 wrap up, quick takeaways, and week 5 preview

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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.

 

Chicago Bears: Week 3 wrap up, quick tidbits, and more

After a week three loss the Chicago Bears will officially turn the page and look forward to week four against the Detroit Lions. But before Chicago welcomes Detroit to Soldier Field for a divisional showdown, let’s look back at week 3.

 

1) First things first, let’s talk about first downs. The Bears had just six, which is the fewest of the Matt Nagy era. Not a good showing for a team that’s led by an offensive guru at head coach.

2) Some positives? The Bears pass rush duo of Khalil Mack and Robert Quinn got going, combining for 3.5 total sacks. Quinn now has more sacks in three games with the Bears than he did all of last season. Chicago is finally seeing the returns that the franchise hoped when signing Quinn to a five-year deal worth $70M in free agency in 2020.

3) “I obviously as a head coach did not do a good enough job of getting this offense ready to go, to be able to play and win a football game,” said Nagy after the game. “It starts with me, it ends with me and it’s as simple as that.”

Nagy’s quote is merely a head coach who’s taking the bullet while being open and honest. But there’s still a lot of work to be done. Everything does start and end with Nagy, which means he’ll need to cater gameplans to Justin Fields skillset, something that wasn’t done in week three.

For anyone who’s trying to get #FireNagy trending on Twitter, good luck. Bears ownership has been clear about how firings are handled. They’ll wait till the end of the season to make a decision on Nagy’s future. The Bears are also 1-2 so far, so Nagy has more room to breathe than most people think.

4) By the way, don’t blame Fields at all. For a rookie making his first start in an incredibly tough environment, Fields got no help from the Bears. If any quarterback deserves a pass for a bad performance this week, it’s Fields, who was sacked nine times, while continuing to remain composed and operating with what the Bears were giving him.

5) Figuring out what the Bears are doing with the offensive line is a tough task. Jason Peters and Germain Ifedi aren’t the tackles of the future, that distinction is reserved for Teven Jenkins and Larry Borom but this game showed that the interior of the offensive line (James Daniels, Cody Whitehair, and Sam Mustipher) needs to get better at communication too.

6) Tons of credit to defensive coordinator Sean Desai. After getting punched in the mouth on national television in week 1, Desai and the defense have adjusted nicely, putting together two solid performances. Desai may not have a talented secondary but the defense is looking better each week, a positive for the Bears.

7) No idea what the Bears are doing with the running game. After two strong performances, David Montgomery was shutdown on Sunday, with just 10 carries for 34 yards, averaging 3.4 yards per carry. That’s the lowest mark of Montgomery’s career since week 17 of the 2020 season. Matt Nagy panicked and got away from the running game way too early, something that’s also been an integral part of the offense when everything is clicking.

8) Jaylon Johnson wasn’t bad but he wasn’t great either. Tasked with shutting down Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., the second-year cornerback had some bright moments, showing us all why he’s a rising star in the NFL and one of the most underrated players at his position across the league.

9) We’re all still waiting for the big Darnell Mooney breakout game to happen. After 61 receptions as a rookie, Mooney had just one reception for nine yards on Sunday. The fifth-round pick did have six receptions for 66 yards in week two but has yet to find the endzone this season. Hopefully that changes with the Lions coming to town next week.

10) Khalil Herbert has done some nice work as a kick returner on special teams. After averaging 23.8 yards per return on Sunday, the Bears need to get Herbert involved in the running game, hoping he can provide some sort of spark.

 

Looking Ahead to Week Four

The Lions may be 0-3 but there’s a catch: Two of Detroit’s three losses have been by a combined 11 points. Bears fans like to make fun of the Lions on social media but head coach Dan Campbell at least has this team playing hard when it matters the most.

Perhaps the strongest positional group on the Lions is the offensive line, which features two first-round picks in Penei Sewell and Frank Ragnow. Watching Detroit against Green Bay on Monday Night Football in week 2, it was clear that the Lions’ OL was good enough to allow quarterback Jared Goff to at least have a fighting chance on every play.

The Bears will need to account for the Lions running back duo, Jamall Williams and D’Andre Swift. Both have impacted games heavily as receivers this season, with the stat sheet on Sunday being a major example. Swift and Williams combined for nine receptions for 85 yards. Detroit may not have a star wide receiver on the roster but Williams and Swift have quickly become Goff’s best friends.