Shop for Chicago Bears gear at Fanatics.com

The Chicago Bears versus the Los Angeles Chargers Game Preview

by Bryan Dietzler

The 3-3 Chicago Bears will play host to the 2-5 Los Angeles Chargers this Sunday at noon at Soldier Field. The Bears are coming off a crushing loss to the New Orleans Saints while the Chargers lost to the Tennessee Titans last week.

This game will feature two teams that are reeling and need to find some answers. The Bears are struggling right now and need to find themselves.

Will this be a bounce-back game for the Bears? Will they be able to right the ship, or will they remain stuck spiraling downwards?

Let’s look at the Bears versus the Chargers game, by the numbers, and make a prediction as to who will win the game.

Bears on Offense

The Bears offense, in a word, is bad. They can’t run the ball. They can only seem to pass it a little bit and not even that well.

Their offense is a shamble.

If you go by the numbers, it’s a sad story. They are 26th in the league scoring points getting just 18.7 per game. Their total yardage per game is 30th at 263.7 yards per game. They are passing for a paltry 193.7 yards per game, which is good for 29th and the rushing attack is 28th averaging 70 yards per game.

Horrible.

The Bears have regressed all the way around. Right now, the only one playing any kind of good football is Allen Robinson. He’s getting the ball much more, perhaps more than he should be, and truly is quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s safety blanket. If he was to get injured, the Bears might not be able to move the ball at all at the rate they are going.

This must be the game that the Bears do better on offense in. Something has to give. They have to run the ball more, they have to get the ball to different receivers.

If they don’t, the season is lost.

I would look for Head Coach Matt Nagy to do what he said he was going to do and that’s run the football more. I think that the Bears will try to get Tarik Cohen, Mike Davis and David Montgomery going as much as possible to take some of the heat off Trubisky and make their offense much more balanced. He must realize that the running game sets everything up.

If the Bears don’t run, the season is lost.

The Chargers’ defense is not bad at all despite their record. Their allowing 20.1 points per game leaves them 10th in the NFL. Their total yards allowed is 333.3, good for 11th, and they allow an average of 216.1 through the air (5th) and 117.1 (22nd) on the ground. As you can see, there is some room for the Bears to run on this defense.

Can Chicago get their rushing game going? They must and it all starts up front with the offensive line as well as what the coaching staff decides to do. The offensive line needs to get a better push forward to help the running back gain those tough extra yards. The coaching staff also needs to keep running the ball even if they don’t gain yards on some of the carries. It seems they run the ball, don’t gain any yards and then freak out. Then, they just throw it.

This must stop.

There are three very capable running backs that are ready to play. Davis, Cohen, and Montgomery are all capable of carrying the football effectively. They just need to get the carries. I almost bet that the running game will get going against the Chargers this weekend knowing what’s at stake for the Bears. I bet that they run it more than ten times to establish a rhythm and keep the pressure off of Trubisky allowing him to do what he does best.

But what does Trubisky do best?

He throws well on the run and the Bears are not allowing him to make plays with his feet and arm in concert with one another. Instead, they are having him stand in the pocket and throw the ball. Moving him around would help him not only avoid the rush but allow him to make plays.

There are times when you need to change things up to play to the strengths of the player involved. The Bears are not doing that and that’s why they are losing.

They need to take a step back, work with Trubisky and get moving in the right direction. Is it going to happen this year, it can but with each loss, it grows more or more likely that major changes are needed and the Bears will take a few steps back this season.

Bears on Defense

The Bears defense has regressed just as bad as the offense has and needs a lot of help. It’s possible it could be due to the fact they are on the field more thanks to an inept offense. Or, it could have something to do with Akiem Hicks, the rock up front, being out. Either way, this group is not what it used to be and something needs to change to get them back into form and able to help the offense.

Statistically, the Bears’ defense keeps sinking lower and lower. They are still ranked 5th in points, giving up 17.5 points per game. The Chargers’ offense is picking up 20 points a game making them the 24th ranked scoring offense in the league. This bodes well for the Bears’ defense.

Providing Chicago’s offense can score.

When it comes to total yards per game, Chicago’s defense is 10th, allowing 330.8 yards per game. The Chargers’ offense is picking up 367.7 yards per game which is good for 14th. The Bears will have to play much better on defense to help keep the Chargers at bay.

San Diego has quarterback Phillip Rivers and he can throw the ball well and for the most part, Rivers has been hot. His Chargers are ranked 3rd in the league throwing for 293.4 yards per game. The Bears pass defense is ranked 13th and is allowing 236.5 yards per game. This looks like it could be a bit of a problem for the Bears especially if they cannot get a pass rush going which they haven’t had success doing the last two games.

Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd need to get going and get a pass rush so they can help the defense put the Chargers’ offense to rest.

The rushing game has been bad news for the Bears in the last couple of games. They are allowing 94.3 yards per rush which is much higher than earlier this year. They have been gashed the last couple of weeks and it shows in the numbers. The Chargers, with running back Melvin Gordon leading the way, are gaining 74.3 yards per game on the ground which is a lowly 27th. Hopefully, they don’t have an epiphany and run all over the Bears in this game. Chicago must shut down the run.

But can they do it without Hicks? Other players must step up and help take the lead. Will they finally do it?

Special Teams

Special teams were electric as far as kick returns go, last week, as Cordarrelle Patterson ran a kick back for a touchdown. He was bound to do that this year. The punting game was less effective having two punts blocked. Hopefully, the coaching staff has corrected whatever was wrong with the blocking on punts and blocks don’t happen again.

Kicker Eddie Pinero is right on the spot 100% of the time. The Bears made a good choice keeping him as their kicker. And when he isn’t getting his punts blocked, Pat O’Donnell is a very good punter.

We need to see just a little more out of Cohen returning punts. Maybe he can break another long one and get the Bears good field position.

Coaching

Nagy is taking his lumps in the press and has a lot to learn still. Was he as good as the Bears thought he was after last year’s performance or was last year a fluke? We are about to find out. It does appear that he has an edge over Chargers coach, Anthony Lynn but it’s close.

Injuries

Believe it or not, the injury bug did not bite the Bears that bad in their last game, so the injury report is light.

Here is the injury report for both teams.

Chicago Bears

Sherrick McMannis-CB-Concussion-He is likely out for this game.

San Diego Chargers

Cortex Broughton-DT-Illness-He hasn’t practiced all week and may not play on Sunday.

Justin Jones-DT-Shoulder-Jones hasn’t practiced all week and is doubtful to play on Sunday.

Nasir Adderly-S-Hamstring-Adderly has not practiced all week and is doubtful for Sunday.

Melvin Ingram-RB-Hamstring-He was limited in practice this week and is likely to play on Sunday.

Brandon Mebane-NT-Knee-Mebane has not practiced all week and is doubtful for Sunday’s game.

Derek Watt-FB-Knee-Watt is going to be a game-time decision after having not practiced or practiced on a limited basis this week.

Justin Jackson-RB-Calf-Jackson was limited in practice this week and should be a game-time decision.

Denzel Perryman-LB-Ankle-Perryman practiced in full this week and should be able to play.

Uchenna Nwosu-LB-Hip-Nwosu practiced in full this week and should play Sunday.

Keenan Allen-WR-Hamstring-Allen did not practice on Thursday and may not play on Sunday.

Damion Square-NT-Hamstring-Square was limited in practice this week.

Thomas Davis Sr.-LB-Not Injury Related-Davis didn’t practice on Thursday. We are unsure of his status for Sunday.

Michael Badgley-K-Groin-Badgley practiced in full and it looks like he will play Sunday.

Score Prediction

The Bears need this win to help keep pace with the rest of the division and plot their course for the playoffs. If they can pull out a win here, they should be, at the least, a little back on track. If they lose, things are going to get ugly.

Chicago 24 San Diego 17

The Chicago Bears versus the New Orleans Saints Game Preview

by Bryan Dietzler

The 3-2 Chicago Bears will play host to the 5-1 New Orleans Saints this Sunday afternoon at Soldier Field. The Bears will be without some key starters, as will the Saints so this game will be more than interesting. It’s going to be a case of whoever has the best backups when it comes to who will win this game.

The biggest thing for the Bears will be getting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky back. At least all signs point to his coming back for this game. Akiem Hicks will be out for this game and he is the one that helps stop the run in the middle. Will Chicago be able to compensate for Hicks’ absence or will they falter as they did against the Oakland Raiders in London.

This is going to be a tough task for the Bears but they can win this.

Let’s take a look at the Bears and the Saints offenses and defenses and how they stack up. Who has the advantage? Who could win this game?

Bears on Offense

The Chicago Bears offense has been hampered by injuries and ineffective play for a better part of this still-young season. Gone is offensive guard Kyle Long, who was placed on IR with a hip injury this week. The running game has been less than stellar and the offensive line has a lot to do with that. It’s difficult to see this unit coming together during the next few games and forming one cohesive unit (with new talent being forced in there) but anything is possible.

Chicago’s offense, overall, is ranked poorly. They are 27th in points averaging 17.4 points per game. Their overall defense is ranked 30th in the NFL as they are averaging 266 yards per game.

The rushing attack, as mentioned, has been anemic at best averaging just 80.6 yards per game which is good for 26th in the league. David Montgomery and company haven’t been able to find any holes to move through and get the necessary yardage. Something has to give for the Bears to have success.

They need to get that rushing attack going.

The passing attack has been poor as well and the change in quarterbacks hasn’t helped. The Bears are currently ranked 30th in the league in passing for an average of 185.4 yards per game. That won’t win you many games.

The Bears must do better.

Perhaps they will now that Trubisky appears to be back and ready to go. Hopefully, he has healed up well enough from the shoulder injury that he can utilize the weapons around him and gain some yards. If he’s feeling right, I would venture to say that Trubisky could have a big game this Sunday.

The Saints have the league’s 11th rated scoring defense allowing teams to score about 20.3 points per game. That’s a pretty tight defense. They are allowing a total of 340.5 yards per game, which is 10th. The Bears get nowhere near that on offense. New Orleans is 11th in passing yards allowing 237.7 yards per game. There may be a little room for the Bears to gain some yards through the air, especially if Trubisky is back and ready to go.

Finally, the Saints are 14th in rushing yards allowed, giving up 102.8 yards per game. Hopefully, the Bears can jump-start their rushing attack and move the ball to take some pressure off the quarterback.

If the Bears need to have a breakout game on offense, they need it in this game because keeping up with the Saints is going to be difficult, due to their powerful offense. But, we did see the Bears catch up against the Raiders a couple of weeks ago so we know that they have it in them.

Bears on Defense

Chicago’s defense was exposed against the Raiders and without Hicks, they may struggle. Hopefully, someone will step up and help plug the middle of that defense so that the Bears can stop the run effectively.

Chicago’s rushing defense took a little bit of a dip after their last game and are now ranked 5th in rushing yards allowed giving up around 83 yards per game. That still isn’t bad but how are they going to perform without Hicks in the lineup? The answer to that question comes Sunday.

If their game against the Raiders is any indication, they may struggle.

The passing defense is allowing teams to throw for an average of 229.2 yards per game which is 10th in the league. The pass rush has not been gaining any traction in most of these games. Khalil Mack failed to have a sack in the game against the Raiders (his former team). He needs help from the guys upfront. Will they be able to give Mack what he needs to rush the passer? Can Mack have a great game?

We can only hope that he will.

Overall, the Bears have allowed an average of 13.8 points per game which is third in the league. Their allowance of 312.2 yards per game is good for sixth in the league.

But they go up against a Saint’s offense that is pretty potent even without their star quarterback, Drew Brees. And they are deceivingly good despite the numbers.

The Saints are scoring an average of 21.3 points per game which is good for 18th in the league. Their high-flying offense has been grounded a little bit due to Brees being out but backup Teddy Bridgewater has been doing fine.

Their total yards per game, on average, is 344.7 which is 22nd in the league. They aren’t putting up some of the bigger numbers that we are used to seeing Saints teams put up but they are still racking up the yards.

As previously stated, the passing game has been without its star, Brees, for a few games now and Bridgewater has taken over. The passing game has been averaging right around 240.3 yards per contest which is good for 15th in the league. They have some weapons and aren’t afraid to use them.

New Orleans is averaging 104.3 yards per game which is much more than what the Bears allow.

Alvin Kamara is the guy in charge of running the football for the Saints. He and the New Orleans rushing attack have been putting up some paltry numbers. But Kamara is injured and isn’t going to play. That leaves Latavius Murray as the running back.

Chicago cannot afford to be weak against the run again and give up a ton of yards to Murray and company.

Special Teams

The Bears got some great play from their special teams against the Raiders a couple of weeks ago and could use a repeat performance from Tarik Cohen.

Eddy Pinero appears to be kicking well and Chicago’s punting, led by Pat O’ Donnell, has been nothing short of excellent.

Coaching

Saints’ coach Sean Payton is a master at the game and has the edge over Matt Nagy. Payton’s experience, along with his superior coaching staff and way to get the most out of his players is something that Nagy and the Bears haven’t established yet. It will happen eventually but until then, they could take a back seat to the Saints coaching staff in this one.

Injury Update

The following includes the injuries listed for both the Bears and the Saints as of Wednesday of this week.

Chicago Bears

Joel Iyiegbuniwe-LB-Hamstring-Iyiegbuniwe practiced in full and should be a game-time decision.

Taylor Gabriel-WR-Concussion-Gabriel has practiced in full all week and should be a go for the game Sunday.

Ted Larsen-G-Knee-Larsen was still limited in practice and it looks like he won’t play on Sunday. Rashaad Coward will probably start in his place.

Mitchell Trubisky-QB-Shoulder-Trubisky has been practicing all week and it looks like he will be a go for Sunday.

Bilal Nichols-DT-Hand-Nichols has practiced in full this week and should play on Sunday.

New Orleans Saints

Drew Brees-QB-Right Thumb-Brees has not practiced all week and is doubtful for this Sunday.

Trey Hendrickson-DE-Neck-Hendrickson was limited this week but might play on Sunday.

Alvin Kamara-RB-Ankle-Kamara hasn’t practiced all week. He is out Sunday.

Tre’Quan Smith-WR-Ankle-Smith has not practiced all week and will be out Sunday.

Jared Cook-TE-Ankle-Cook hasn’t practiced all week and will be out for this one.

The Final Word

This is going to be a tough game for the Bears to win but it’s not going to be impossible. They have the drive and the talent to get a victory against the Saints especially because they are at home. But New Orleans may be too much for them to overcome.

However, if the Bears’ defense can have a shutdown game and their offense can get moving against a deceptively stout Saints’ offense, the Bears could win this game.

This might be too close to call. I am going to have to go with the Bears in this one. It will be a tight, low scoring game but Chicago will just pull ahead and come out on top.

Score Prediction

Chicago 17 New Orleans 13

The Chicago Bears versus the Oakland Raiders Game Review

by Bryan Dietzler

In what this writer thought was going to be an easy win for the Chicago Bears, the game ended up much differently than many thought. The Bears started with no energy whatsoever but stormed back to take the lead only to see it slip away. The game ended with a 24-21 score and a huge disappointment for the Bears and their fans.

The coaching staff is not letting their decision to come in on Friday, and only have about 48 hours or less to acclimate to the time change and the jet lag that the team was sure to experience, be the excuse for losing this game. The Raiders came to London at the start of the week and had plenty of time to acclimate. Oakland had the upper hand.

Scoring

Let’s look at the scoring in this game and how it unfolded as well as a few key plays that helped make this a loss for the Bears.

The Raiders scored the first 17 points of the game. Their first touchdown happened after a 10-play 90-yard drive that ended on a 12-yard run by the star of the game, Josh Jacobs to put the Raiders up 7-0. Oakland marched down the field with seeming ease on the drive and left a lot of Bears’ fans scratching their heads and wondering what happened to that vaunted defense.

The Raiders would go up 14-0 after a three-yard touchdown by DeAndre Washington. The score capped off a quick 6-play 22-yard drive by the Raiders and further showed the ineptitude of the Bears’ defense.

Oakland would cap off the first half with a 41-yard Daniel Carson field goal following an 11-pay 43-yard drive.

The Bears, with their heads spinning, went into the locker room down 17-0 and looking for answers. They were able to find something in that locker room because they came out firing in the second half.

A miscommunication between quarterback Derek Carr and Jacobs left the ball to go flying away and gave the Bears the ball in the redzone early in the third quarter. Chicago would go five yards in two plays capping the short drive off with a one-yard touchdown run by David Montgomery. The score was 17-7 at that point.

Were the Bears mounting a comeback? It certainly looked like it.

Still, in the third quarter, the Bears would make it 17-14 following a 12-play 9-yard drive which saw it end with a four-yard pass from Chase Daniel to Allen Robinson.

The Bears would add another touchdown, this one following a huge punt return by Tarik Cohen. The touchdown came on a 16-yard pass from Daniel to Robinson just one play after the punt return.

The Bears seized the lead 21-17. Could they win this game?

The bottom sort of fell out as the defense was not able to stop the Raiders from marching 92 yards in 13 plays for a two-yard Jacobs touchdown run. The Raiders went up 24-21 leaving the Bears enough time to march down the field and either win or tie the game.

But they couldn’t do it.

Daniel threw a couple of nice passes and got the Bears into position but he threw an interception to end the drive and seal it for the Raiders. The Bears did get the ball back at the very end with just a few seconds left but couldn’t do anything.

The final score was 24-21 in favor of the Raiders.

Offensive Struggles

The Bears’ offensive line has been struggling a lot as of late. They aren’t able to get any push in the rushing game and are playing poorly overall. Kyle Long looks like he is playing tired. Charles Leno, Jr., has regressed and James Daniels is not where he needs to be. This is a major problem that isn’t going to be fixed right away.

Chicago might end up sitting with this problem for the remainder of the season. Unless they can find and get better talent, this is going to be a group that stays with the Bears until the end of the season. This may be bad news for the Bears.

The offense looked tired in this game. Trey Burton had a horrible game. He looked slow and unwilling at times. He’s just not a great overall athlete. Perhaps he is still hurting from his ongoing groin injury.

One thing that you do have to appreciate about this offense was their ability to come back and take the lead. Traditionally in the past, if a Bears team was down by more than ten points, they wouldn’t be able to stage a comeback. But the Bears were able to do that, albeit temporarily.

That’s something to hang your hat on.

Defensive Bumbles

What is wrong with the defense? Wow, what a poor effort by one of the league’s top units. This group has been traditionally strong against the run but not in this game. In this one, they allowed almost 200 yards on the ground and gave up three rushing touchdowns. It was an embarrassment that the team and their fans hope to forget.

Perhaps Head Coach Matt Nagy’s plan of getting in on Friday wasn’t good. The team looked tired and could have probably used some extra time to adjust to the time change and shake the jet lag. Nagy says that’s not what’s to blame but I think that it had a hand in it.

Another thing that had a strong hand in helping the Bears to lose was the sheer size of the Raiders’ offensive line. They are huge and the Bears were too easily pushed around by this gargantuan set of football players.

Either way, it’s their worst performance in the Nagy era. This one needs to be burned, buried in the ground and forgotten.

Special Teams Excitement

The Bears’ special teams played very well against the Raiders. From well-placed punts by Pat O’Donnell to a long return by Tarik Cohen, this group did well.

Now, if all three phases could get going, this could be a better contender.

Injury Issues

The most talked-about injury from this game happened to Akiem Hicks as he suffered from a dislocated elbow. There isn’t much out there about the injury. We aren’t sure how much time he’s going to miss but he’s sure to miss at least a little bit of time. Judging the injury (as seen on television), it looked serious.

Next Up

The Bears will be on a bye and will come back next week to prepare for the New Orleans Saints. Coverage of that game will appear here, on BearsGab, next week.

The Chicago Bears versus the Oakland Raiders Game Preview

By Bryan Dietzler

The Chicago Bears and the Oakland Raiders will head to London to play a late afternoon game (for us it will be at 12 CST) and entertain thousands of fans in England. The Bears are coming into this game having won a convincing victory over the Minnesota Vikings 16-6. The Raiders come into this game with a record of 2-2. They beat the Indianapolis Colts, last Sunday, 31-24.

Chicago comes in looking very good on defense while their offense could struggle. Quarterback Mitchell Trubisky is out and while they fared better with Chase Daniel at the helm last week, there is tape on him now so his tendencies can be discovered and a much better defensive effort can be put forth against him.

Will the Raiders shut Daniels down?

Let’s look at the numbers and some thoughts on the Bears versus the Raiders game coming up this Sunday in London.

Bears on Offense

We know that Daniel will be the starter this week while Trubisky nurses a dislocated shoulder. Daniels performed well in relief of Trubisky against the Vikings. Now, however, the Raiders have some idea of how he plays and will present a challenge for Daniels. Will he be able to overcome the challenge and play even better this week?

It’s hard to use passing game statistics for the Bears because it’s a different quarterback making his first start of the season. Instead, we should look at what the Raiders defense does against the pass and see if the Bears will have any success passing the ball.

Oakland is ranked 24th in the NFL allowing 25.5 points a game. They are letting opponents gain 385.5 yards per contest which is 22nd in the NFL. When it comes to passing the ball, the Raiders are ranked 27th allowing opponents to pass for 281 yards per game.

Will the Bears be able to pass the ball against this Raiders team? It all starts up front and the Bears offensive line, which has suffered some injuries as of late, needs to keep Daniel clean. If they can do that and give him some time to throw the ball, the sky’s the limit for him and his group of receivers.

Chicago’s leading receiver, Allen Robinson, has been a reliable target for whoever is playing quarterback and will be a key in this game. So will Anthony Miller who is having a less than stellar season. It’s looking like Taylor Gabriel won’t be available (concussion) so Robinson and Miller, along with Javon Wims, will be the key for the Bears to help move the ball down the field.

The Bears will need all hands on deck when it comes to the passing game and moving the ball down the field. It’s important that they control the ball and the clock in this instance so getting the passing game going is a must. But with questions surrounding the offensive line as well as Daniels, it’s going to be tough to think of what the Bears will be able to do throwing the ball down the field.

A good move would be getting the tight ends involved. Trey Burton appears to be healthy and Adam Shaheen has made some nice catches recently. Getting the ball out to the running backs would also be a huge help. We know that Tarik Cohen is capable of catching the ball.

Will they utilize the running backs and tight ends as pass catchers?

The running game has been cold, for the most part, this season. The Bears are currently ranked 25th in the league averaging 90.2 yards per game. They just cannot seem to get the running game going strong and this has been a problem. They need to get it going to not only control the ball and the clock but to also keep their defense off the field.

The Raiders rushing defense is ranked 16th allowing 104.5 yards per game. Look for the Bears, in particular, David Montgomery and Cohen, to find holes to exploit and get those tough yards on the ground.

The Bears won’t win if they can’t run the ball. It’s time that their rushing attack has a breakout game.

In other statistical categories, the Bears come in 28th in points. Their total yards per game is 273.5 which is 30th.

Something has to give. The Bears’ offense has to get better if they plan to win this and other games.

Bears on Defense

Last week’s performance against the Minnesota Vikings was the stuff of legends. Had they not allowed the lone Vikings touchdown, this game would have gone down as one of their best.

Can they do the same thing that they did last Sunday this Sunday against the Raiders?

The answer is yes!

The Bears have the number two defense in the NFL when you look at all the statistics and rankings. They are currently allowing just 11.2 points per game which is currently second in the NFL. The Raiders are scoring an average of 19.8 points per game which is 21st. It looks like the Bears could keep them at bay when it comes to scoring.

But there is a lot more to scoring than just numbers. Scoring is based on how well you perform against the pass and the run. Let’s see how the Bears fare on defense in those categories.

The Raiders are well adept at rushing the football. They are averaging 125.8 yards per game which is 9th in the league. Their leading rusher, Josh Jacobs, is averaging 4.6 yards per rush. But the Bears are allowing just 61.5 yards per game on the ground which is good for third in the league. That’s a solid defense.

We remember how the Vikings had a very good running game heading into their game against the Bears. Chicago shut them down. They can and will do that in this game. Don’t look for a breakout rushing game by the Raiders in this one.

The Bears defense does have its moments when working against the pass but luckily the Raiders aren’t that well adept at passing. They are ranked 26th in the NFL averaging 210 yards per game through the air. The Bears defense allows 229.2 yards per game making them the 12th ranked pass defense in the league.

Chicago’s pass defense needs to be on top of its game to prevent the Raiders from winning this one. Look for lots of pressure from the Bears’ front as Khalil Mack will be bent on getting after his old team. I expect him to have a huge game. You should also expect to see guys like Leonard Floyd and Roy Robertson-Harris to have big games as well.

I could see this easily being a six, or more, sack effort by the Bears’ defense.

For overall offense, the Raiders are ranked 21st in the league totaling 335.8 yards per game. The Bears are shutting down opponents ranking 5th in the league allowing 290.8 yards.

The Bears can’t afford to have a slip up against the Raiders in this game. They must continue to perform as they have been. But it doesn’t appear that Chicago will slip up.

Special Teams

Bears’ kicker Eddy Pinero had himself a good game last week despite still suffering from a knee injury. Hopefully, he’s healed up and ready for those long field goals, this week, because the Bears might need him badly.

Coaching

This is an interesting coaching matchup. You have the ultra-experienced Jon Gruden, whose team is on the verge of something special but it’s not going to happen this year. For Chicago’s coach Matt Nagy, the special is already here and he just must keep moving forward to make good things happen. If anyone has the edge here, it’s Nagy because his team is so well put together and playing hard right now.

Give the Raiders another year and they will be better. But the time for the Bears is now.

Injury Report

Which players on the Bears and Raiders are injured? Let’s look.

Chicago Bears

The following Bears are listed on the injury report. Here is what they are on the injury report for and their status for Sunday’s game.

Taylor Gabriel-WR-Concussion-Out

Mitchell Trubisky-QB-Shoulder-Out

Ted Larsen-OT-Knee-Out

Bilal Nichols-DL-Hand-Out

Akiem Hicks-DL-Knee-Questionable

Joel Iyiegbuniwe-LB-Hamstring-Doubtful

Kyle Long-OG-Hip-Will play

Trey Burton-TE-Groin-Will play

Roquan Smith-LB-Personal-Will play

Eddy Pinero-K-Knee-Will play

Oakland Raiders

Gabe Jackson-OG-Knee-Out

Clelin Ferrell-DE-Concussion-Questionable

LaMarcus Joyner-S-Groin-Will play

Dwayne Harris-WR-Ankle Questionable

Richie Incognito-OG-Back-Questionable

Josh Jacobs-RB-Elbow-Will play

Tyrell Williams-WR-Foot-Questionable

JJ Nelson-WR-Knee-Questionable

DeAndre Washington-RB-Ankle-Will play

Who Will Win?

The Bears should be able to win this game. If the offense doesn’t let the defense get gassed by being on the field too much, you can bet this will be a Bears’ win. A win would help give them some momentum heading into the bye week as their schedule gets tougher and the wins become even more important. The Raiders are still building but don’t have a long way to go. But they don’t have enough to beat the Bears.

Score Prediction:

Chicago 21 Oakland 9

The Chicago Bears versus the Minnesota Game Review

by Bryan Dietzler

Having a first-hand, in-person view of a football game is the best way to watch it. This past Sunday afternoon, I had a chance to go and see the Chicago Bears host the Minnesota Vikings at Soldier Field. The game was high energy as was the crown and the Bears seemingly easily handled the Minnesota Vikings winning by a score of 16-6.

This game saw a lot of players who hadn’t had much experience playing or played second string, step up and play especially on defense. They made the difference and the Bears easily won this game.

Scoring

There wasn’t a lot of scoring action in this one unless you like field goals, but the Bears got the upper hand first. Shortly after starter Mitchell Trubisky went out, backup Chase Daniel threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Tarik Cohen to put the Bears up 7-0 quickly in the first quarter.

After a lot of ineptitude on both sides of the ball, Chicago managed to get a 25-yard field goal from Eddie Pinero to go up 10-0 in the second quarter. The score came on the heels of a 16-play 57-yard drive.

Chicago would go up 13-0 in the third quarter following a 38-yard field goal by Pinero. The score capped off a drive that saw that Bears lose four yards.

The Bears’ final score of the game came after a 9-play 62-yard drive which ended with a 30-yard field goal by Pinero. The score was 16-0. The Bears were poised for a shutout.

But the shutout didn’t happen. Minnesota headed down the field, with seeming ease, capping off a 13-play drive with a touchdown. The touchdown came courtesy of a two-yard run by Dalvin Cook. The two-point conversion failed and the score ended up at 16-6.

That’s how the game would end.

Bears on Offense

Six plays into the game, Mitchell Trubisky went out with a shoulder injury that looks like it will keep him out for a while. Daniels played well in his place but the Vikings didn’t have any tape on him and weren’t prepared. That can make a difference and it did. This happened last year, as well as Daniels’ first game, was good but his second game was a bit of a disaster.

Let’s hope that his second game is just as good, or better than his first.

The running game was able to get going, albeit a little bit and helped control the ball and the clock. Remember that the Vikings have a great run defense so getting the yardage that the Bears did was a big feat. Supplemented by accurate passing, the offense shined on Sunday. Even though all they could do is score 16 points.

Bears on Defense

The Bears’ defense was stifling. It was one of the best performances by their defense I have seen in a while. They virtually shut down the Vikings offense, in particular, their rushing attack which had been averaging well over 100 yards per game. They allowed just one score. The unit was filled with second-string players due to injuries and the mysterious missing Roquan Smith issue and they all played like starters.

The effort on defense was nearly flawless. Six sacks recovered fumbles, and constant pressure made them shine. They took care of Cook and didn’t allow him to get big.

They played tough and won.

The defense is outstanding.

Coaching

I liked Matt Nagy’s use of his challenges. They made sense and he won them which helped lead to the Bears’ victory. You could see, being there in person, what seemingly made sense with the challenges and they were spot on. The defense was very well-coached and overall, got the best of the Vikings offense.

This is one of the better-coached games in recent history for the Bears.

Special Teams

Pinero delivered with three field goals and helped keep the Bears ahead of the Vikings. Coverage teams were good and Pat O’Donnell’s booming punt helped matters.

Special teams have been unsung heroes this season.

Player of the Game on Defense

I give this honor to all of the backups that played on defense. It looked like the number one unit was out on the field for the game because there wasn’t any drop off in play. These guys did great. It looks like they might have to do it again coming up against the Raiders.

We will see.

Player of the Game on Offense

My player of the game, on offense, is Daniels. He came into this game with hardly any reps and played to near perfection. Granted, there were a few passes that he didn’t complete that he should have but overall, his start was stellar. It looks like he will have at least one more start this weekend in London against the Raiders. Hopefully, he does well.

Injuries

Before the game, we knew that Akiem Hicks would likely not play due to a knee injury. Wide receiver Taylor Gabriel was out with a concussion suffered on Monday night. The biggest surprise of the game was with Smith. He was ruled out just before the game and it’s a mystery as to what is wrong with him. Hopefully, everything is ok.

The biggest and most concerning injury of this game came early on when Trubisky went down with a dislocated shoulder and torn labrum. He shouldn’t miss much time but the Bears look like they are in good hands with Daniel.

At least in the short term.

It appeared as if Ted Larsen was injured a couple of times in the game.

Sights and Sounds from the Game

Attending the games live and in person is the best way to go to view the action. The crowd was heavily involved in this game and made it difficult for the Vikings to hear plays being called. Several people in the stands were calling for Daniels to be the full-time starter. A few people around me were asking where Smith was and what was going on with him.

Overall, it was a very pleasant experience. It was a lot of fun and well worth the time and money spent.

Next Up

The Bears will travel to London to take on the Raiders next Sunday. The Raiders are playing well, somewhat, but haven’t faced a defense the likes of the Bears.

A full preview of this game will be coming this weekend.

Ex-Raider and Now Bears LB Khalil Mack Ready to Come at Oakland This Sunday

The Raiders weren’t willing to pay the price to keep Khalil Mack, so he’s intent on making them pay the price for losing him, Jason Lieser of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

Mack gets his first shot at his old team when the Bears face the Raiders in London on Sunday, and while he’s trying to stay cool about it, there’s definitely some added incentive going against them.

When asked if there’s a feeling of vindictiveness for him this week, his face lit up.

“Vindictiveness? I like that word,” Mack said. “You can’t play this game with too much emotion. Ultimately, I try to stay focused on the task at hand, understanding the situation.

“Absolutely there’s feelings that you suppress, but it’s also no big deal to me. I’m here. I love the Bears. We’re gonna go out and try to get this win.”

The Chicago Bears versus the Washington Redskins Game Review

by Bryan Dietzler

The Chicago Bears went into their game against the Redskins on Monday night hoping that they would be able to spark their offense and get it moving. Washington would not hold the offense back. The defense shined and the Bears beat the Reskins 31-15.

Chicago was red hot in the first half but their defense kind of let go a bit in the second half allowing the Redskins to score two touchdowns and stay in the game. Perhaps it was fatigue or perhaps the Redskins figured the Bears’ defense out. But a win is a win and the Bears need to build upon it to keep winning and get to the playoffs.

Scoring

Scoring, in this game, started virtually right away as, in the first quarter, Washington quarterback Case Keenum threw a ball right into the arms of Ha Ha Clinton-Dix who ran it 37 yards for a touchdown. The Bears were up 7-0 early and momentum was on their side.

Chicago would go up 14-0, in the second quarter, after quarterback Mitchell Trubisky hit wide receiver Taylor Gabriel on a three-yard touchdown pass. The drive began when Washington missed a field goal. The Bears went 58 yards in 11 plays for the score.

The Bears would go up 21-0 on another pass from Trubisky to Gabriel, this one a one yarder following a fumble by the Redskins. The drive was a short one but the play was a big one.

The Redskins got the ball back, but their drive ended thanks to another Keenum interception this one was courtesy of Kyle Fuller. Chicago scored again. The touchdown, another one from Trubisky to Gabriel, was a beautiful 36-yard pass that saw Gabriel get his feet in the right place in the endzone. The play helped keep the momentum going in the Bears’ favor.

It appeared as if Chicago was going to be unstoppable.

The Redskins stole a little bit of that momentum at the end of the half thanks to a 35-yard Dustin Hopkins field goal.

The half would end with the Bears up 28-3.

The second half saw Chicago’s defense regress a little and its offense become stagnant. Still, the Bears started hot as Keenum threw another interception to Clinton-Dix. In the third quarter, following a missed field goal the Redskins marched down to score a touchdown at the end of an eight play, 66-yard drive. Keenum’s pass went to Terry McLaurin for 15 yards.

The two-point conversion failed so the score was 28-9.

The next score would come from Washington as they capped off a 12-play 92-yard drive which began when Josh Norman intercepted Trubisky. Keenum hit wide receiver Paul Richardson from two yards out. Again, the Redskins tried for two and again, the try failed.

The score was 28-15. The Redskins were back in the game.

Chicago managed to get turnover from the Redskins and was able to move the ball down the field on a clock eating 10 play, five-minute 58-yard drive. Chicago capped it off with a 38-yard field goal by Eddy Pinero, who was playing hurt.

That made it 31-15.

That was the final score.

Bears on Offense

The Bears’ offense wasn’t bad or as bad as they have been. They were able to get both the passing and running game going a bit and got Trubisky into a much better place than he had been. Chicago played smart football on offense and made virtually no mistakes (save for some penalties and that interception). If they can clean up some of their carelessness and continue to build on the win, the sky is the limit.

Bears on Defense

The Bears’ defense was at it’s best again, at least in the first half as they allowed just three points. They did break a little bit in the second half allowing two touchdowns mainly because the offense didn’t do that much to help keep the ball out of the Redskins hands. Turnovers were key. The Bears got five total in this game helping them end a drought (they came into this game with just one turnover).

When the defense is on, it’s scary. Let’s hope it continues to be.

Special Teams

You could see that Pinero was hurt last night. He limped out onto the field for his kicks, missed a field goal and generally looked unpleasant. Let’s hope that the Bears don’t lose him for a while. He just needs to rest and be fresh for Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings. If Pinero can’t recover quick enough, the Bears will be in the market for another kicker.

Coaching

Head Coach Matt Nagy had the edge in this one. Jay Gruden’s team looked confused and struggled in so many aspects on Monday night. Nagy’s ability to simplify the offense, making things simpler on Trubisky including staying with him over the headset until the cutoff time (15 seconds), really helped.

You could see it working.

Now that these adjustments have been made, will they continue and help make the Bears even better?

Player of the Game on Offense

Believe it or not, this one was a bit hard but it came down to two players. Both Gabriel and Trubisky played well in this game and were the difference on offense. Gabriel’s catch, which was reviewed by the officials, was a thing of beauty and so was the pass. Very accurate.

Let’s hope that Trubisky will be able to repeat this throughout the season.

Player of the Game on Defense

Once again, two players shined in this one. Clinton-Dix and Khalil Mack showed up to play and play they did. Clinton-Dix’ two interceptions (returning one for a touchdown) were huge and came at critical moments. Mack’s play was the stuff of legends and he continues to prove that he is worth all of the effort, draft picks and money that the Bears spent to get him.

Injuries

There was one player who was deemed out just before the game and that was offensive tackle, Bobbie Massie. He was diagnosed with vertigo and couldn’t play.

The only two players to get hurt during the game, according to the Bears, were Gabriel and Akiem Hicks. Gabriel suffered a concussion and is in the concussion protocol while Hicks hurt a knee. The severity of Hick’s injury is not yet known.

Next Up

The Bears will play their second home game of the season this Sunday afternoon against division rival Minnesota. The Vikings are coming off of a convincing win versus the Raiders and look to continue pushing forward to keep pace with Green Bay.

The author will be at the game and will have a report on it next week.

The Chicago Bears versus the Washington Redskins Game Preview

by Bryan Dietzler

The 1-1 Chicago Bears, fresh off a close win over the Denver Broncos, will take on the winless Washington Reskins in Washington this Monday night. The Redskins lost to the Dallas Cowboys this past Sunday and are looking for their first win of the season.

The Bears are looking to continue winning by building upon their victory last week.

Let’s look at the offense, defense and special teams matchups that are important in this game along with a look at who will win the game.

Bears on Offense

The Chicago Bears have had a tough time of it on offense lately. They were stagnant against the Green Bay Packers but came alive, somewhat, in the second game versus the Broncos.

The Redskins defense ranks near the bottom in most categories. They are 31st in rush yards and points allowed, 30th in total yards allowed and 25th in passing yards allowed.

Looking at the numbers for the Bears’ offense, they are currently ranked 30th in points and yards gained, 28th in passing yards and 18th in rushing yards.

Something must give in this game.

Could the Bears’ offense finally wake up and get going against the Redskins?

It all starts at the quarterback position and Mitchell Trubisky has a lot to prove. If you listen to the experts this week, they are saying that he should have his bearings in his third year and be playing like a starter. That’s not happening.

Is it time to give up on Trubisky? That’s a story for another day.

If the Bears are going to have success on offense in this game, they are going to have to get Trubisky going and supplement his play with the run. The Bears are fully capable of running the football with Mike Davis, Tarik Cohen, David Montgomery, and even Cordarrelle Patterson. They just need to commit to it.

Running Montgomery would be beneficial to the Bears. His ability to blow through holes and break tackles is unique and he could easily help the Bears control the tempo of the game. Look for Chicago to run him more often against the Redskins and try to control the ball and the clock.

It’s not like Trubisky doesn’t have a bevy of weapons to throw the ball to. Allen Robinson, Taylor Gabriel and Anthony Miller are all respectable receivers that can catch the ball and do something with it afterward. They just need to “get” the ball.

That’s been the problem.

Hopefully, that problem is corrected in this game. Trubisky really needs a breakout game not only to help the Bears win but get the monkey off his back. He needs to show everyone that he was the right choice when the Bears selected him in the draft a few short years ago.

The tight end group has been a bit of a disappointment with injuries and ineffective play. We did get to see a little more out of Adam Shaheen last Sunday and hopes are that he will pick it up and play better. Trey Burton needs to step it up as well.

But in the end, it’s up to Trubisky and head coach Matt Nagy to get the tight ends, receivers and running backs the ball.

Will the Bears finally get their offense moving and look better than they have the last couple of weeks?

We will find out Monday night.

Bears on Defense

The Redskins’ offense hasn’t been that terrible the last two weeks despite the 0-2 start. They played Philadelphia close in the first game and didn’t lose as big to Dallas like some thought they would. Their offense could give the Bears’ defense a run for its money on Monday night.

We all know that the Bears have one of the top defenses in the NFL. Their 12 points allowed ranks third in the league while their total yards allowed is fourth. Chicago allows the six fewest rushing yards and the 12th fewest passing yards.

As you can see, the Bears have a top-end defense and it’s going to help them win games. But can it help them win this one?

The Redskins ranking on offense aren’t bad, but they aren’t that great either. When it comes to scoring, they are 9th in the NFL with 24 points per game. Their total yards per game stands at 326.5 which is 25th in the NFL. They are 10th in passing yards totaling 289 yards per game on average while their rushing yardage sits at 37.5 which is a lowly 30th in the league.

Case Keenum is the Redskins quarterback and he’s not been that bad in his first two starts. His completion percentage is currently sitting at 69.1. He has thrown for five touchdowns in two games which is solid. The Reskins passing game is a little scary and should give the Bears’ some concern.

What was kind of unnerving last week was the way that Denver was able to seemingly pass all over the Bears’ defense. Luckily, when the field got shorter the defense got better but this has to make the Bears a little nervous. Can they stop Keenum and the seemingly high-powered Redskins passing attack?

Washington has allowed opponents just two sacks through two games. This means that their offensive line is protecting Keenum well. The Bears will need to get pass pressure from the usual suspects such as Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd.

I would look for one of those two to have a big game.

The secondary needs to step it up and cover the Redskins receivers. Guys like Terry McLaurin and Chris Thompson cannot have big games against the Bears this Monday. The corners and safeties need to have a solid, mistake-free game on Sunday.

Rushing the ball has been a problem for the Redskins. Their current rushing leader, Adrian Peterson, has just 25 yards through two games. That’s poor. The Bears do well against the run but they haven’t done well against Peterson in the past. However, Peterson is not what he used to be and the Bears’ run defense will shut him, or any other running back Washington has, down.

Look for the linebackers to be active in this game with guys like Roquan Smith and Danny Trevathan making plays all over the field. I don’t suspect that the Redskins are going to magically “grow” a ground game in this one.

Special Teams

Yes, the Bears found themselves a kicker after a season of woe at the position in 2018. Eddy Pinero justified his being on the team by making the winning kick last week in Denver. The Bears may need him to do it again this week as this promises to be a low scoring game and every point will count.

He cannot afford a miss.

That could be deadly for the Bears.

Coaching

While Jay Gruden has more experience than Matt Nagy does, Nagy seems to have the edge in talent on the team as well as organization. The Redskins always seem to be in a state of disarray and while things are a little bit better this season, it’s hard to see past the 0-2 start. It means something is wrong in Washington.

Nagy will need to get Chicago’s offense going in this game using both the run and the pass to move the ball down the field. They should be able to get some yards running the ball but due to ineffective play by Trubisky, passing the ball becomes more of a question mark.

If creativity is needed, Nagy can deliver. But he can’t get too cute.

Score Prediction

This is going to be a close game just like the first two games were. I expect the defense to be lights out but the offense will struggle at times. I think Chicago’s offense will be better but it’s taking baby steps right now. The Redskins will make it interesting, but the Bears will win this game.

Chicago 17 Washington 13

Updated Chicago Bears’ Injury Report

Here is the injury report for the Chicago Bears as of this Saturday:

Bilal Nichols-DT-Hand-He will not play in this game

Eddie Goldman-NT-Oblique-He’s been limited but will most likely play in Monday’s contest.

Trey Burton-TE-Groin-Burton seems to be injured often although he should play in this one.

Kyle Long-OG-Hip-This one kind of came out of nowhere. Hopefully, he is a go Monday.

Eddie Jackson-S-Shoulder/Knee-Jackson has some soreness but should be able to play Monday night. The Bears need him in the secondary.

Eddy Pinero-K-Right Knee-This should be as scary as it looks. The Bears cannot afford a confused kicking situation or an injured kicker. Let’s hope he can play and be effective on Monday night.

Washington Redskins Injury Report

Jonathan Allen-DT-Knee-Questionable

Quintin Dunbar-CB-Knee-Questionable

Colt McCoy-QB-Fibula-Out

Cassanova MiKinzy-LB-Hip-Out

Jordan Reed-TE-Concussion-Out

Fabian Moreau-CB-Ankle-Probable

Morgan Moses-OT-Knee-Probable

Monte Nicholson-S-Foot

Robert Davis-WR-Knee

Write For Us