All statistics and snap counts are taken directly from the NFL's Game Statistic and Information System.
The bottom line is the 2015 Chicago Bears were a better team than the 2014 Chicago Bears. After the dysfunctional nature to the end of the Marc Trestman era, it would have been difficult for a John Fox led team to not show improvement. But this 6-10 season will go down in the annals of Chicago history as a positive step in the right direction.
The Bears were technically only better by a win this season, but their point differential went from -123 in 2014 to -62 this year. That's still bad, but it's improvement.
Last season's Chicago offense averaged 327.1 yards per game, but this season they increased that to 344.6. Last year's defense gave up 377.1 yards per game, while this year's was down to 345.4. More improvement.
The Bears aren't improving when it comes to beating the Detroit Lions. With their win yesterday, the Lions have now beat the Bears six straight times, with Chicago's last victory coming back in December of 2012.
As for yesterday's game, the Lions outgained the Bears 349 to 342. They had more first downs, 22 to 16 and they won the time of possession 32:30 to 27:30. The Bears had the edge in 3rd down conversions 58% (7-12) to 40% (4-10), and they were only penalized one time for 15 yards, to 4 for 21 yards for the Lions.
The killer stat this week was the turnovers, the Bears gave it away three times without taking it away from the Lions once.
FYI - All the charts are Total snaps played - Percentage of snaps played
|Matt Slauson C||52 - 100%|
|Vladimir Ducasse RG||52 - 100%||4 - 17%|
|Kyle Long RT||51 - 98%||4 - 17%|
|Charles Leno Jr. LT||52 - 100%||4 - 17%|
|Patrick Omameh LG||52 - 100%||4 - 17%|
|Jermon Bushrod||15 - 29%||4 - 17%|
|Nick Becton||4 - 17%
Hroniss Grasu was inactive so it was Slauson at center and Omameh/Ducasse manning the guard spots. Bushrod technically got a start at tight end.
The Bears gave up 4 sacks, 6 quarterback hits and 5 tackles for loss.
There was one positive for the offensive line however, no penalties.
The stat sheet says Jay Cutler threw thee interceptions, but there were some unfortunate circumstances surrounding all three. Besides those three picks, Cutler had 2 TD passes on 17 of 23 passing (73.9%) for a 97.5 passer rating. He added an 11 yard scramble as well.
Cutler finished 2015 with a career-high passer rating of 92.3.
|Matt Forte||43 - 83%|
|Jeremy Langford||14 - 27%|
|Ka'Deem Carey||4 - 8%||12 - 52%
It was fitting in what may be Matt Forte's last game as a member of the Bears, that he finds the end zone at least once. Forte took a little swing pass 23 yards for the TD. His day, and possibly Bears career, ended with 76 yards on 17 carries (4.5 avg) and he caught all 3 passes thrown his way for 34 yards.
Something to keep in mind as the Bears decide whether or not to re-rign Forte to a new deal this offseason. The Bears seem happy with both Langford and Carey, and both of them are on their rookie deals, so if Forte comes back their overall cap hit for the position will still be relatively low.
Langford, who will have a much bigger role next year, only had 5 attempts for 14 yards (2.8ypc). Carey had 1 rush for 10 yards and a special teams tackle.
|Khari Lee||31 - 60%||8 - 35%|
|Rob Housler||23 - 44%||10 - 43%
Was Zach Miller too hurt to play, or have the Bears decided that they'd like to re-sign the free agent to be and erred on the side of caution?
With Miller out, Housler was the most (and only) targeted tight end. Cutler threw 2 balls his way and he caught them both for 18 yards.
|Cameron Meredith||32 - 62%||6 - 26%|
|Marc Mariani||48 - 92%||4 - 17%|
|Deonte Thompson||9 - 17%||4 - 17%|
|Josh Bellamy||42 - 81%||1 - 4%|
Alshon Jeffery was placed on IR and Eddie Royal was too sick to play yesterday, so the Bears started Bellamy and Mariani at wide out. Bellamy caught 3 balls on 4 targets, for 49 yards and a TD, and he added 12 yards in kick return yardage on a trick play.
Mariani led the Bears with 6 receptions and 80 yards (both career highs). He was targeted 8 times and he also had a 47 yards kick return and 2 punt returns for 9 yards.
Meredith caught 2 of the 4 balls thrown his way for 19 yards. Thompson caught 1 of 2 balls for 45 yards and he had 3 kick returns for 57 yards.
|LaRoy Reynolds||9 - 39%|
|Chris Prosinski||19 - 83%|
|Sherrick McManis||19 - 83%|
|Lamin Barrow||14 - 61%|
|Robbie Gould||9 - 39%|
|Patrick Scales||6 - 26%|
|Patrick O'Donnell||6 - 26%
For all the crap that Robbie Gould took from fans this season, he actually broke his own franchise record for field goals made with 33. Gould made both field goals and both extra points against the Lions.
O'Donnell punted twice for a 51 yard average, he put one punt inside the 20.
Prosinski had a tackle and an assist.
|Kyle Fuller CB||65 - 100%||12 - 52%|
|Adrian Amos S||65 - 100%||9 - 39%|
|Tracy Porter CB||64 - 98%|
|Sherrod Martin S||1 - 2%||10 - 43%|
|Bryce Callahan CB||53 - 82%|
|Demontre Hurst CB||5 - 8%||10 - 43%|
|Harold Jones-Quartey S||64 - 98%|
|Alan Ball CB||1 - 2%||1 - 4%
Chicago allowed Detroit's Matthew Stafford to throw for 298 yards and 3 TDs and Calvin Johnson to grab 10 balls for 137 and a TD. In is last 4 games against the Bears, Johnson has gone over 100 yards receiving.
I remember the good old days with Charles Tillman shadowing Megatron.
Fuller had 5 tackles on D and another on ST. Porter had 6 tackles and a pass defense. Callahan was back in as the nickleback and he had 3 tackles, a sack, a QBH, and a TFL. Ball had a PD.
Amos had one assisted tackle, but Jones-Quartey had 7 tackles and a QBH.
|Christian Jones ILB||42 - 65%||7 - 30%|
|Shea McClellin ILB||11 - 17%|
|Jonathan Anderson ILB||5 - 8%||19 - 83%|
|John Timu ILB||65 - 100%|
|Sam Acho OLB||19 - 29%||12 - 52%|
|Pernell McPhee OLB||27 - 42%|
|Willie Young OLB||46 - 71%||5 - 22%|
|Lamarr Houston OLB||38 - 58%|
Timu led the Bears in tackles with 8 as the starting Mike backer, and Jones had 5 tackles, a sack, a QBH and a TFL as the Jack backer. Anderson assisted on a ST tackle.
Houston had 3 tackles, a sack, a QBH and a TFL. His sack gave him 7 on the season, which led the Bears and as a new career high. McPhee had 1 tackle and a QBH, Acho had a tackle and Young didn't scratch the stat sheet.
|Greg Scruggs||17 - 26%||2 - 9%|
|Bruce Gaston||36 - 55%||5 - 22%|
|Will Sutton||44 - 68%||5 - 22%|
|D'Anthony Smith||24 - 37%|
|Mitch Unrein||23 - 35%||5 - 22%
Not a bad debut for Scruggs, 3 tackles, a sack and a QBH. Gaston had 2 QBHs.
Sutton had 2 tackles and Unrein had a QBH before leaving the game with an injury.
Thoughts on the numbers this week?