Week one of the regular season is over. It’s time to move on to week 2.
Especially those Bears fans who have spent every single day dissecting every decision, throw and play call made or didn’t make against Green Bay. The Chicago Bears have chosen to learn from it and move on to Week 2…and so should we.
And despite several blowout games throughout the NFL, Bears fans will not let the loss to the Packers die. So now it’s on to Denver and a matchup with former Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio as head coach.
The Chicago Bears and the Green Bay Packers kicked off the 2019 NFL season at Soldier Field with the hype that was electrifying from a city celebrating 100 years in the NFL. Bears fans were excited to see the current kings of the NFC North take the field.
Experts and sportswriters were convinced that with the absence of Vic Fangio from the Bears defense, that they would regress. But that was not the case as the defense sacked quarterback Aaron Rodgers 5 times. Not one sack came from linebacker Khalil Mack but two of them exploded from LB Leonard Floyd. The defense wasn’t completely perfect, as some open space was left for Rodgers to manipulate. As a result, he put up the only touchdown of the game.
The Chicago Bears have a lot to celebrate this season. As one of the oldest franchises in the NFL, the Bears celebrate 100 years of electrifying, heart-stopping plays, both good and bad.
But this year seems different. The Bears won the NFC North division in 2018, after a lack-luster 2017 season. The defense topped the league in an unexpected fashion. But like every off-season, players come and go, whether it be via free agency or trade.
Heartbreaking does not describe the feeling of every Chicago Bears fan after the devastating loss to the Philadelphia Eagles at Soldier Field. A one point differential. One point. That has been the staple all season, getting close and squeaking out a win.
This was the wild card game against a team the Bears helped get in to the playoffs by beating the Minnesota Vikings in Week 17. But it was a game the Bears should have won and it should not have rested on the leg of a kicker who had been inconsistent all season.
I could sit here and go over the details of what happened that led to a last-second field goal. Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky struggled in the first half. He did not give up the ball but his throws were not there. Workhorse running back Jordan Howard was shamefully unused as he had only 10 touches for 35 yards. RB Tarik Cohen was less, at zero rushes. ZERO!
It was 31 years ago that a strange eerie fog rolled into Soldier Field in a critical NFC divisional playoff game between the Chicago Bears and the Philadelphia Eagles. It was a beautiful brisk day in Chicago and clear skies. But there was a cloud of uncertainty between the two teams.
Eagles head Coach Buddy Ryan was going head-to-head against his former team, a team he had built a fierce defense with that dominated in 1985, resulting in a Super Bowl title.
In 1988, the Eagles had the worst pass defense in the league. This year the Eagles rank 30th in passing defense, while the Bears rank seventh. Back then head coach Mike Ditka said that “if we don’t beat ourselves we can win this game”. I would say that same statement would apply today for the Bears going into the playoffs this Sunday. But for the 88’ Eagles, that was the case as they could not score a touchdown due to penalties, including some that negated two touchdowns in the first half.
Christmas is literally around the corner and the Chicago Bears already stuffed their stocking with an NFC North division title.
Intertwined with that title came a win against the Green Bay Packers at Soldier Field (which was long overdue), the trade of linebacker Khalil Mack from the Oakland Raiders and five players in the Pro Bowl, Khalil Mack, safety Eddie Jackson, defensive end Akiem Hicks, cornerback Kyle Fuller, and running back Tarik Cohen.
But I’m sure Santa Claus isn’t going to stop there, right? The Bears were really good this year!
In 1940-1941 the Chicago Bears were the most dominant team in the NFL.
It resurged again in 1984-1985 when the Bears built another dominant defense that consisted of “Samurai” Mike Singletary, Dan Hampton, Richard Dent, Otis Wilson, Ron Rivera, Steve “Mongo” McMichael, and William “Refridgerator” Perry, Lezlie Frasier, Dave Duerson, and Gary Fencik.
These prolific players took Chicago by storm. But shortly after that, the monsters hibernated, showing only glimpses in 1990-1991 and then again in 2005-2006 and 2010.
Fast forward to 2013 when Marc Trestman was hired as head coach. His winning record in the CFL was enough to hire him as head coach to replace Lovie Smith, but he didn’t have the fire to back it up.
If you haven’t noticed there is a new vibe to the Chicago Bears. It started the moment head coach Matt Nagy entered Halas Hall with an attitude to #BeObsessed.
His goal was to ingrain into the hearts and minds of each player to stop playing mediocre football, which was something they became used to during the Marc Trestman and John Fox eras. But it had to start with the players believing that they could.
So Nagy and general manager Ryan Pace chose to bring in key players to prime their pump and motivate change. The additions of offensive and defensive weapons such as wide receivers Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel, tight end Trey Burton, and linebacker Khalil Mack have already paid in dividends. But it is more than just on the field. The desire to win and play as one unit has shown in every play.
Should it be said that Chicago Bears tight end Trey Burton was right and that breaking momentum with an early bye would slide them to a string of losses?
Maybe, but I blame the loss to Miami on the NFL’s Officiating team. The loss at home against a poor New England defense was on the Bears.
There is no point in rehashing the nightmare. Who wants to relive wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson‘s 95-yard touchdown run through the Bears special teams unit like a knife through butter? Poor Bears kicker Cody Parkey. His attempt of running after him was just sad. Or how about the blocked punt from punter Pat O’Donnell that was taken for a touchdown?
The saddest part was that, for one fleeting moment, WR Kevin White almost became the hero. He was just one-yard shy. Ah yes, good times.
The 3-1 Chicago Bears are now refreshed coming off an early bye week. It was not ideally the best situation having already built a winning momentum. But the NFL gods deemed it so and now they hit the road with fresh legs against the 3-2 Miami Dolphins.
The Dolphins have just come off a terrible beatdown by the Cincinnati Bengals and continue to pile up injuries in the process. Especially with a banged up offensive line, quarterback Ryan Tannehill may be in deep trouble against a fierce Chicago defense.
As a Bears fan, I expect there to be at least 3 sacks and 2 fumbles in this game, not to mention an interception or two. But then again, that could also happen to Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky if the protection isn’t there.