Let's not sugarcoat things. In Week 5, the Chicago Bears lost to the Detroit Lions for the first time since being swept in 2007, by a Lions team that finished 7-9 after starting 6-2, going 1-7 after beating the Bears for the second time and pounding the Denver Broncos 44-7. The only game they won that season in the 1-7 stretch was a 25-20 win against the Kansas City Chiefs.
I don't say this in the hopes that history repeats itself - lest you forgot already, the Bears got swept that year. I say it because I like little nuggets like that, however meaningless, since the Lions are off to a matching 6-2 start and, like that season, facing the AFC West this year.
So the Lions have already beaten both the Chiefs and the Broncos this season in convincing fashion, coming into Chicago fresh off a 45-10 full-on pantsing of the Broncos and looking for their second win against Chicago since that sweep in 2007, and hoping for a much better finish to the season than that year. The Bears, meanwhile, come in red hot, winning three straight since that game and allowing only 3 sacks against two of the better pass-rush units in the league. A win against the Lions draws the records even at 6-3 and evens the head to head series, while a win for the Lions pushes the Bears back into the wild card mosh pit, of which they'd still generally be in decent position.
So what gives the Bears a better chance this week? Well, since that fateful day in Detroit, the Bears haven't allowed a play of longer than 34 yards, Earl Bennett has returned and had a very solid game against Philadelphia, Matt Forte has continued to ball, and we go from the Detroit Rollerdome to Soldier Field.
Gameday-related linkage can be found after the jump.
The Injury Report. Highlights - Best out, Carimi out, Hester still questionable.
ESPNChicago game preview. Little known fact, the last 22 times the Bears have been in the red zone, 21 times they've left with points.
Matt Bowen's breakdown highlights Earl Bennett.
Meanwhile, Dan Pompei wants the Bears to throw more to Knox, comparing him as the team's Maserati. Points if anyone can tell me what that makes Bennett and Roy Williams lately.
Devin Hester may not play. Lovie Smith ain't never scurred.
Ah, the old debate of momentum versus youth. Wait what?
You just knew this was gonna come up again. Johnson plans to celebrate at scene of the crime. ONNTSA.
Rashied Davis says out loud what just about everyone knows about the field.
Matt Forte: "Actions speak louder than words." Also, this just in, really damn good.
Week 5's loss to the Lions was a "wake-up call."
Rush - Working Man (via MedicusMaleficus)
Gameday procedures today, there will be an early games thread at noon with the Bears' first quarter thread popping up at game time. Recap comes up after the game with an SNF thread starting up when that game does.
Now with all the propers out of the way, Bear Down!
Chicago Bears Fight Song (via scifiradioguy)