Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?
I always like the Chicago Bears.
And they have started the season 2-0 without playing anything resembling a complete game. Maybe we’re seeing what they are offensively, a group incapable of consistency due to the failings of the quarterback. But defensively, they’ve been far more bend-don’t-break than one would expect. Once the pass rush hits stride, that should stop. That begins Sunday.
Thoughts on the Atlanta Falcons
- Hayden Hurst is a problem. And the Bears have not shown a particular ability to contain tight ends, with both Hockenson and Engram delivering solid performances in weeks one and two. (Moving Trevathan from the starting lineup may help sure up this issue.) When Matt Ryan has time in the pocket, he’s looking deep down the left sideline to Ridley or over the top to Jones. But when he senses pressure, Hurst is becoming his most reliable target.
- Takkarist McKinley (#98) is the team’s best edge rusher, and he’ll attempt to bull rush Bobby Massie on most passing downs. But he’s the only reliable factor on their front four. When they need to create pressure, they’ll bring John Cominsky (#50), often as a blitzer from the inside. (He’s listed as a defensive end but he sure doesn’t seem to play there very often.) If the Bears identify those two players and neutralize them, Trubisky will have plenty of time to look down the field.
- The Falcons seem soft in the middle of both their offensive and defensive lines.
- On offense, they rely almost exclusively on their passing game in short yardage. Yes, they’ll occasionally hand one to the fullback to get ten inches but on 3rd and a couple they haven’t been able to get any push up front through two weeks.
- On defense, they’ve been in shootouts so they’re allowing 372 yards per game in the air. But when Dallas needed to get the game back under control, they handed off consistently to Ezekiel Elliot and there were gaping holes for him. Can’t imagine the Bears don’t think they can control this one on the ground.