Last week was ugly, so…
Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?
Stat of the Week
Mitch Trubisky. Baker Mayfield. Marcus Mariota. Daniel Jones. These are (were) the four quarterbacks of the teams ranked directly above the Chicago Bears in passing yards per game. The Bears are currently throwing for 97.5 yards per game, more than 40 yards per game fewer than the 31st ranked team.
Last year, the New Orleans Saints were last in this statistic. They threw for 187.4 yards per game.
If these numbers don’t dramatically improve for the Bears, this could the worst passing attack in modern football history.
From Twitter on Monday
I put the following commentary on Twitter Monday, but I wanted to repost it here. It should help towards understanding how I’m going to be writing about the 2022 Bears, and their quarterback, moving forward.
There was always going to be a contingent of Bears fans who started panicking once the team started losing ugly – an inevitability. These were the “Justin Fields will own the division” and “11 wins are possible” crowd. True believers; nothing wrong with it.
For the first year of a new program, there are definitive positives on the field. (I’ll have a piece about some of them tomorrow.) And you hope that over the next 13 games we simply continue adding to this list, building excitement / momentum for 2023.
But you have to understand that the Bears are far closer to the worst team in the league than the best. We could be looking at a group picking in the top 3 next spring. But two picks in the top 35 might be EXACTLY what this roster needs. (That’s where these fancy WRs are.)
I’m going to stay macro for the remainder of the season and cease the micro stuff. It’s not going to make me a particularly fun follow on game days but that’s where I’m at emotionally/mentally with this team and I feel it’s the smartest way to engage them.
Top “5” Folks from Minnesota (in video form)
This was NOT an easy list to compile. But I’m happy with my choices. And for all you Bob Dylan fans, I apologize. But I would rather listen to my cats scratch the couch cushions than an 11-minute Dylan mumble. So, I guess I don’t really apologize. I do apologize to the Judy Garland fans, though.
5. Mitch Hedberg
4. Terry Gilliam
2. John Madden
1. The Coen Brothers
Some Thoughts on the Vikings
- This has been a bizarre start to the season for the Vikings. They dominated the Packers in their opener, were dominated the following week by the Eagles and then won two absolute coin flips against the Lions and Saints – both games I would argue they should have lost. They have been terrible on defense and not nearly good enough on offense, considering their weapons. But they are 3-1 because that’s what the league is right now.
- The problem they pose for the Bears is they are now three-deep at wide receiver and the Bears can’t counter that at corner. Justin Jefferson is probably the most talented receiver in the game. Adam Thielen is steady and reliable. But K.J. Osborn, while invisible against the Saints, really looked like he was emerging against the Lions. I’ll be surprised if that’s not the player on display this coming Sunday.
- What’s interesting about the 2022 Vikings is they are a carbon copy of the 2021 Vikings, with one exception: they’re escaping these games with wins. Amazing how the perception around a team, and a new program, is altered by the opposing kicker hitting the upright with a tying field goal attempt.
- It has become a discounted statistic, but I think point differential tells a story. For instance, let’s look at how the NFC teams are grouped by this stat:
- Eagles: +44
- They are clearly the class of the conference.
- Niners: +25
- This number might surprise but when they win, they win convincingly.
- Bucs: +14
- This number will go up as their schedule eases.
- Cowboys, Giants, Vikings, Packers, Falcons, Lions: -1 thru +9
- This is the thick chewy center of mediocrity of the NFC. Yes, the Lions only have one win, but they could easily be 4-0. Their three losses are by a total of ten points.
- Bears, Panthers, Saints, Cardinals, Seahawks, Rams: -7 thru -24
- The Rams are the outlier here, as their number is skewed by the 21-point loss to the Bills in the opener.
- Commanders: -34
- Washington looks destined for the first pick in the draft, especially with Pittsburgh making the move to Kenny Pickett.
- Eagles: +44