By Bryan Dietzler
The Chicago Bears hosted their division rival, the Minnesota Vikings, this past Monday night in their only Monday night game of the 2017 season. No one gave the Bears much of a chance to win this game, but Chicago played the Vikings tough, albeit sloppy and almost won.
It came down to the final few minutes, but the Bears fell just short of winning the game thanks to a field goal in the final seconds by Minnesota
Chicago ended up with a 20-17 loss but have a lot to look forward to.
The Trubisky Factor
It was rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s first regular season game, and despite a couple of critical errors and drops by his receivers, he had an encouraging game. Sure, he looked terrified to start (you could see it on his face), but as the game went on, he started to settle in and get more comfortable in the offense. Trubisky had a fast start and then cooled off before helping to engineer the offense’s only touchdown drive of the game.
But in the end, his only interception of the game caused the Bears to lose their bid for a comeback and their chance at stealing a win fell short.
But don’t let that upset you Bears fans, better times are ahead.
You can tell that with Trubisky at the helm, the Bears are headed in the right direction. Despite the fact he had two turnovers, his upside appears to be much better than Mike Glennon’s and he represents the best hope for the Bears to turn things around and build a winning franchise. T
The future in Chicago is bright thanks to Trubisky.
If he can get some help from his wide receivers and tight ends, he will have better days and will win some games perhaps even this year. But the team has a lot to do to rally around him and help get to where he needs to be. Some of the things that they need to do, like get help at the wide receiver position, can’t be done until next year.
I had alluded to the fact that Trubisky may have had a better game had he not had so many drops by his receivers. The drops have to be concerning and we cannot seem to find a reason for why this is happening. Is it bad mechanics? Is it the fact that the receivers are not used to the quarterback and therefore haven’t adjusted to the passes that he is throwing?
Are the receivers on the Bears just that bad?
Who knows why but one thing is for sure Trubisky is not going to develop quickly or “well” if his receivers keep dropping passes. But how do you fix something that’s been going on for two years (with the dropped passes)? That’s not that easy because it means getting rid of most of these guys and bringing in new receivers.
If that’s what it takes to win then, the Bears need to do that, desperately.
You must admit that the penalties the other night against the Bears were concerning. If you watched the broadcast, you might have heard that the officiating crew that called the game, headed by Jerome Boger calls the most penalties in the league. It sure seemed like it didn’t it? Well, it’s not just the fact that the officials may have been calling this game a little tight. Chicago has struggled with penalties during the season as well so this was no coincidence.
The Bears have had 38 total penalties through five games including eight on Monday night. They had a season-high of ten against Pittsburgh and a low of four against Atlanta. They have an issue with discipline as well as playing clean football and it showed on the national stage Monday night.
The issue with penalties stems directly from how the players are coached. Good coaching brings discipline and discipline means fewer penalties.
Perhaps the Bears need better coaching?
After having nine sacks through the first four games, the Bears got four on Monday night in impressive fashion. They even recorded a safety to go along with several tackles for a loss. They got two sacks from Leonard Floyd and another two from Akiem Hicks. Granted, they got their sacks against a less than mobile Sam Bradford but they showed that their pass rush is getting better and is moving in the right direction.
Hopefully, Floyd and Hicks can be counted on to rush the passer consistently and help keep the Bears defense from getting beat through the air.
They had their coming out party now they just need to do what they did as much as possible.
Speaking of coming out parties, rookie safety Eddie Jackson had himself a nice game on Monday. Not only did he record four tackles but he also had a critical pass defended. The Bears even threw him in on special teams to return punts. Jackson has slowly been finding his comfort zone and may have finally found his comfort zone Monday night. The Bears need him to find it because they are hurting at safety and need all the help they can get.
Jackson just might be the best draft choice that Pace had out of this year’s draft. So far….
Linebacker John Timu was hurt against Minnesota. He is currently listed as out with injuries to his left leg and ankle. The good news is linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski returned to practice so he may be coming back soon. That will be huge.
Marcus Cooper continues to be out with back spasms and Hroniss Grasu is still nursing a hand injury.
The Bears released kick return specialist Deonte Thompson and brought wide receiver Tanner Gentry up from the practice squad. The move to let Thompson go should have come six weeks ago.
Next Sunday, the Bears will travel to Baltimore to talk on the Ravens. We will have a full preview of that game, on Bearsgab, later in the week.
Please follow me on Twitter @bdietzler.
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