The Bears Last Chance Starts on Sunday
Detroit Lions (4-7) at Chicago Bears (5-6)
The Bears have now lost five straight games. Their last victory was on October 18 at Carolina over the Panthers 23-16. Since then, five losses and a bye week. So what now? HC Matt Nagy is on the hot seat and he stated this week that the team had to have some “personal pride”. We agree.
The good news is that it’s not too late. 5 wins and 6 losses could quickly become 10 and 6. Why not? The schedule is somewhat easy by NFL standards. Chicago hosts Detroit (4-7) and Houston (4-7) over the next two weeks, goes on the road for two very winnable games at Minnesota (5-6) and Jacksonville (1-10), and then finishes the season at Soldier Field versus Green Bay (8-3) who might not need to win in that last game, thus possibly playing backups in a meaningless game. Meaningless for them perhaps. Very meaningful for the Bears. As you can see, all of those teams have losing records except for the Packers.
So could Chicago go 9-7 or 10-6 and make the NFC Playoffs? Sure they could. Don’t forget the NFL added an extra Playoff team per conference this year. So that means there will be three Wild Cards in the NFC. As of now, the Bears are only one game behind that last spot.
So the Bears have an opening and could make the Playoff field. Of course, they could also lose the rest of the five games, which would likely get Nagy and GM Ryan Pace fired on the NFL’s traditional Black Monday, January 4, 2021.
All of this speculation rests on the idea that the Bears can improve and show some spirit, unlike the miserable night up in Wisconsin last week. That 41-25 beatdown was despicable. It was so awful that we’re not even going to award Game Balls or a Player of the Game. Instead, let’s flush that one and move on. Next up is the beginning of the end, Detroit.
A given in any playoff contending NFL team’s schedule is the idea of winning the majority of their home games, especially their division-rival home games. Thus far, Chicago is 1-2 against division opponents with three games left. By losing to Minnesota in a key game at Soldier Field a few weeks ago, the Bears put themselves in a bind. They need to make up for that surprising home loss by winning at Minnesota while holding form against Detroit and Green Bay at Soldier Field. This is very possible despite the negativity you’re probably feeling about the team at this current moment.
Never forget that as bad as the Bears have looked recently, these other teams are just as miserable. The Lions already fired their GM and HC. The Jaguars fired their GM. The Texans fired their GM and HC Bill O’Brien. The Falcons fired their GM and HC also. Look at that schedule! The Bears already beat Atlanta and now could complete the quadruple by beating Detroit (again), Houston, and Jax.
Troy Aikman’s Efficiency Ratings (AER)
- Detroit (4-7) : 27th overall, 19th offense, 29th defense
- Chicago (5-6) : 25th overall, 30th offense, 10th defense
- Detroit : 24th overall, 20th offense, 30th defense, 18th special teams
- Chicago : 19th overall, 28th offense, 4th defense, 11th special teams
According to Sports Betting Dime, Chicago is favored by 3 points as of Friday. SBD predicts a 19-13 victory and point spread cover for the Bears. As you can see from all the stats above, the Chicago Bears are the better team and should be favored. In fact, we think the Bears should be favored by more than a field goal.
Chicago Bears (5-6)
Dutch Lion (10-1) – Our only loss of 2020 was the Monday Night defeat to Minnesota.
We see the Bears getting back on track on Sunday at Soldier Field in the traditional noon timeslot. The “Monsters” on defense might get the much-needed DT #96 Akiem Hicks back from his hamstring injury. Even if Hicks does not return, the intensity level should be high after that awful display of missed coverages and missed tackles at Green Bay. With their head coach calling them out, I see the “Monsters of the Midway” led by ILB #58 Roquan Smith, OLB #52 Khalil Mack, CB #23 Kyle Fuller, and FS #39 Eddie Jackson taking out their frustrations on a mediocre Lions offense. Like the ’85 Bears with one of the most “bad-ass” players ever, Wilber Marshall, I see these Bears dominating the Lions. Look for several sacks and takeaways against Detroit.
On the other side of the ball, the Bears offense might actually shine against one of the worst defenses in the league. QB #10 Mitch Trubisky will make some plays with his arm, and his feet. He’ll connect with WR #11 Darnell Mooney on a deep shot. RB #32 David Montgomery might have his best game of 2020 and the Bears will roll. Detroit stinks and Chicago is due for a big win. PICK: Bears S/U and ATS
Chicago Bears 27 Detroit Lions 12