Chicago Bears/Detroit Lions Recap
The mediocre Chicago Bears (2-2) were able to beat the miserable Detroit Lions (0-4) on Sunday at Soldier Field by a score of 24-14. Good thing for HC Matt Nagy, GM Ryan Pace, and the Bears front office because if they had lost to the most miserable team in the NFL they might have had a tough decision on their hands.
When one analyzes the Bears schedule each and every season, the easiest game on the schedule is almost always the home game versus the Lions at Soldier Field. If Chicago can’t win that one, then you know they’re going to have a lousy season.
The reason Chicago won the game was Nagy handing over the playcalling to OC Bill Lazor. Lazor is a really good playcaller. Nagy isn’t. What if the Bears keep succeeding on offense, and winning, with Lazor in charge? Will Pace fire Nagy and name Lazor the interim head coach? I would, but who am I?… I’m the “Dutch Lion”, only 14-3 as Bears prognosticator last year. This year? 4-0.
WR #11 Darnell Mooney – He caught 5 passes for 125 yards on 7 targets. His long catch of 64 yards was the Bears longest play of the season. This is how it should look when you have a strong armed passer in Justin Fields and a speedster in Mooney, combined with a power rushing attack that works well off of play-action. Give credit to Lazor for changing everything from Nagy’s lazy shotgun-based attack.
ILB #58 Roquan Smith – He plays great almost every week. Against the Lions he had 10 tackles, 8 of which were solo stops, and 1 sack.
ILB #44 Alec Ogletree – Ogletree continued his strong start to 2021 with another solid performance. He totaled 12 tackles, 10 solo, 1 TFL, and 1 PBU. Did anyone notice Danny Trevathan was still missing? It hasn’t really affected this defense. Luckily Pace grabbed Ogletree off the scrap heap over the off-season.
DE #99 Trevis Gipson – Remember this draft pick? Gipson was selected in the 5th round in 2020 out of Tulsa. In only 7 games played as rookie, recording only 5 tackles, Gipson looked like another bust. Now in his 2nd season, he might be a guy. Gipson recorded 4 tackles, 2 TFL’s, 1 sack, and 1 PBU vs the Lions. Not bad.
Player of the Game
RB #32 David Montgomery – Lazor put the offense’s outcome on Montgomery’s back and it worked. Montgomery carried the ball 23 times for 106 yards and 2 touchdowns. What do you do when you have a bad pass protecting offensive line with an inexperienced quarterback? You run the ball. Lazor gets it. Nagy doesn’t. Montgomery made it work with tough running, all the way up until he got injured. He has a sprained knee and will be out for awhile, maybe four to six weeks? Now the Bears will turn to Pace’s underrated free-agent acquisition #8 Damien Williams to take Montgomery’s place.
Chicago Bears/Las Vegas Raiders Preview
So what have we established so far in ’21? The Chicago Bears are a mediocre team. The Las Vegas Raiders are good team. This is the first time the Bears will visit the beautiful new Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. Naturally, the Raiders are favored by 5.5 points.
Troy Aikman’s Efficiency Ratings (AER)
- Chicago Bears (2-2) : 28th offense, 6th defense
- Las Vegas Raiders (3-1) : 16th offense, 23rd defense
- Chicago Bears : 25th overall, 29th offense, 8th defense, 16th special teams
- Las Vegas Raiders : 22nd overall, 22nd offense, 15th defense, 13th special teams
Sports Betting Dime
Sports Betting Dime predicts the Bears will upset the Raiders by a score of about 26-24.
Last week’s prediction: Chicago Bears 13, Detroit Lions 12
Last week’s final score: Chicago Bears 24, Detroit Lions 14
2021 Season: Chicago Bears 2-2, Dutch Lion 4-0
2020 Season: Chicago Bears 8-9, Dutch Lion 14-3
This week’s Prediction:
I was surprised to see the Raiders ranked lower than their 3-1 record would indicate. They are better than Chicago, but maybe not as much as you’d think. Nonetheless, they are playing at home after a loss at the Los Angeles Chargers on Monday Night Football. So they had a short week of preparation but they are motivated to get back on the winning track. They’re at home and favored by 5.5 points. The Bears are likely to struggle without David Montgomery due to his injury.
QB Derek Carr is really good. The Raiders can move the ball with RB Josh Jacobs, TE Darren Waller, and plays called by HC Jon Gruden. Despite the strange story that was published this week that Gruden sent some unsavory emails about ten years ago, I expect the Raiders to be focused. We’re picking Las Vegas to win and cover the point spread.
Las Vegas Raiders 26, Chicago Bears 16