The Chicago Bears kept their season alive another week last Thursday night by dismantling the Dallas Cowboys at Soldier Field. By improving to 7-6, the Bears stayed “in the hunt” for the second Wild Card spot.
Of course, Chicago didn’t get the help it needed over the weekend, as Minnesota took care of Detroit and the L.A. Rams (surprisingly) beat up Seattle. In order to make the postseason, the Bears need to win out, L.A. needs to lose two of their final three, and the Vikings need to lose two games (though one of them would be a loss to the Bears in Week 17.)
Chicago needs a ton of help, but it won’t matter if they don’t beat Green Bay at Lambeau Field this coming Sunday. Take care of business, and they can ‘deservedly’ ask for help.
With that, I reach into this week’s Bears Mailbag. Thank you to everyone who submitted questions; I always appreciate the participation. Follow me on Twitter @DhruvKoul to continue the conversation.
I don’t think so. The Bears have been playing better football lately, and while some guys have either played better or stepped up to fill key roles due to injury, the Bears would be wise to invest in help at their positions of weakness.
The Bears have desperate needs and decisions to make at the following positions: QB (competition for Mitch Trubisky), TE (what’s after Trey Burton?), EDGE (Leonard Floyd questions and beyond), and ILB (do they bring back Danny Trevathan or Nick Kwiatkoski?)
They would be wise to consider upgrades and/or depth at the following positions: OL (any upgrades at OT or RG?) and CB (will Prince be cut? Who will replace him?)
I would even argue that another evaluation be made at K. Eddy Pineiro has rebounded decently lately, following a horrendous stretch before the Rams game. But it would still be prudent to investigate here.
The Bears may play very well down the stretch, perhaps win out, and perhaps even make the playoffs. Even if all of that happens, I think the Bears should consider carefully the needs they had glaring early on in the season. A team is never “set”. Upgrades can always be had — something the Bears would be wise to remember.
While Mitch Trubisky’s play in recent weeks has been delightfully encouraging, we still don’t know if this resurgence is a fleeting streak or a true turnaround for him. Remember, he looked strong toward the end of 2018 before starting 2019 in the toilet. The Bears would be negligent to not prepare themselves in case Trubisky goes back to resembling a deer in headlights early next season.
I expect a few changes in the QB room next year. First, I expect this to be the end of Chase Daniel and perhaps Tyler Bray in Chicago. I think the Bears will go after a veteran to compete with Trubisky — the competence of the veteran is likely TBD based on how Trubisky finishes 2019. And I’d expect them to take a flier on a rookie QB in the draft (probably in the later rounds) to round out the QB room.
Change is necessary to ensure that the Bears are well-equipped in case Trubisky reverts back to hindrance rather than hero.
I struggle to understand what “any good” means. Are they elite? No. Are they a playoff team? Likely not. I understand there were expectations for the Bears coming into 2019, but I recalibrated my expectations for this team after they got blown out at home by New Orleans. I further recalibrated after Eddy Pineiro’s 41 yard field goal attempt sailed wide left to drop a heartbreaker to the Chargers the following week.
But Matt Nagy pulled this team out of the jaws of a total spiraling meltdown. And right now, they’ve won more games than they’ve lost, are relevant in the playoff picture in December, and have been playing pretty good football recently. I think that constitutes as pretty good. Let’s see if they can continue their mini-streak here at Lambeau Field on Sunday.
It’s hard to say. He looked good at the end of 2018, and proceeded to fail spectacularly when 2019 started. It’s taken him a long damn time to snap out of it and start playing better football. But he has, encouragingly, looked great the last two weeks, and decent overall going on five games now.
Is there hope he continues this into next season? Sure — if he continues to play well against three playoff caliber teams with tough defenses (stats/rankings aside), then maybe he builds enough confidence to carry over into training camp and into Week 1. The funny thing about Trubisky is that he’s always a grab-bag. He will look horrendous one drive and unstoppable the next. In a weird way, he’s a less talented Jay Cutler. Frightening for the larger Chicago Bears fan base, huh?