Bears at Lions Game Preview

| December 1st, 2010

The Chicago Bears are coming off their most impressive victory since Sunday January 21, 2007 against the New Orleans Saints – a win that ushered them to their first Super Bowl since the 1985 season.  Dominant on defense, efficient and often assaulting on offense and always reliable on specials, the Bears now head into the Motor City with an opportunity to guarantee themselves a winning season.

Detroit Lions

Why do I like the Chicago Bears this week?
  • I always like the Chicago Bears.
  • I think I’m very much still underrating the impact of the Bears defense.  I still expect them to give up the big play on third-and-long.  I still expect them to give quarterbacks too much time in the pocket.  I still expect bad penalties in the secondary.  None of those things happen anymore.  This defense allows only 15+ points a game – less than the Steelers, Ravens and Jets.  
  • Jay Cutler is on a hot streak and I expect him to mirror his Week One performance: 23-35, 372 and two touchdowns.  Jay Cutler won’t admit it but he feels slighted by Terry Bradshaw’s not including him on his ten best quarterbacks under thirty list.  I don’t expect a letup down the stretch.
  • Shaun Hill is not Joe Montana but he’d be coming into this game with confidence from the final drive of the Week One matchup.  Drew Stanton will be facing a pass rush that had not yet emerged with depth and a secondary that had not yet been settled.  The Bears will shut down a now-healthy Jahvid Best and force Stanton into situations he’s uncomfortable with.
  • The one thing that worried me slightly against the Eagles was our struggles in punt and kick return coverage.  Robbie, in the dome, has no excuse not booting the ball into the end zone and Maynard needs to find more hang time to allow our punt coverage units time to get downfield.  
  • There are two Lions I fear recently.  (1) Calvin Johnson.  Johnson is possibly the best receiver in the league and the Bears need to keep Charles Tillman and a safety near him at all times.  His skill will also be somewhat neutralized by Drew Stanton however.  (2) Kicker Jason Hanson never seemed to miss a kick against us so I feared anything under about 55 yards was a makable kick.  Hanson is hurt and Dave Rayner couldn’t scare a group of pigeons with a foghorn.
  • The Bears have mastered the short passing game in recent weeks, involving Knox, Hester, Olsen, Forte and Duke of Earl at nice intervals.  If they drop seven steps and allow the Lions front four to dictate play, they’ll be asking for tough afternoon.  If they get the ball to their playmakers quickly, they should move the ball fluidly all afternoon.
  • Devin Hester breaks the record.
Chicago Bears 34, Lions 10