The Chicago Bears did something on Sunday that surprised fans and critics alike: They dominated the Detroit Lions on both sides of the football, and walked away from Soldier Field with their first win of the 2016 season. Of course, that’s pretending like the special teams play didn’t screw up, but we’ll talk about that later.
Before the game, many were wondering if the beat-up Bears roster could compete with the Detroit Lions, who are no longer the NFL’s red-headed step child... But on Sunday, not only did the Bears compete— they won definitively both offensively and defensively.
GOOD JOB, BRIAN HOYER
The Bears quarterback position continues to be a lightening rod for attention, and with Jay Cutler injured and inactive for the second week in a row, backup Brian Hoyer took the reins and led the Bears offense into battle. And for the second straight game, Hoyer threw for over 300 yards, made zero mistakes, and spread the ball around like smart quarterbacks do.
GOOD JOB, DOWELL LOGGAINS
When Adam Gase left Chicago for the Miami Dolphins head coaching job, the Bears promoted Dowell Loggains into that role for two reasons: 1- He would run basically the same system that Gase had found success with, and 2- Because of the development of Jay Cutler under his tutelage while quarterbacks coach.
However, in his first three games of the 2016 season, the new Bears OC drew sharp criticism for his vanilla play-calling and passive approach to game-planning. Things weren’t looking good for Loggains’ long-term prospects, but on Sunday against the Lions, he might have turned things around.
The offense was moving at a great rhythm in all four quarters, with a good blend of rushes and passes. Loggains did a great job today.
GOOD JOB, DEFENSE
Despite a few drives where the Bears defense couldn’t find ways to stop the Lions from eating up yards, they held strong when it mattered most. Most notably, on a goal-line stand in the 3rd quarter when the Lions marched down the field without much effort, the Bears front-7 stood their ground and forced Detroit to kick a field goal.
WHAT’S UP WITH THOSE SPECIAL TEAMS, YO?
We know Jeff Rogers worked for John Fox in Denver and is generally considered a good coach, but the Chicago Bears special teams has had some issues this year. On Sunday, they missed a field goal by Connor Barth, gave up a punt return touchdown, and almost completely screwed up the Lions final onside kick attempt.
They need to shore that up, and quickly, because special teams contribute to wins and losses about 75% of NFL games.
Brian Hoyer: 28/ 36, 302 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT, 120.1 rating
Jordan Howard: 23 rushes, 111 yards | 3 receptions, 21 yards
Eddie Royal: 7 receptions, 111 yards, 1 TD
Kevin White: 6 receptions, 55 yards (INJURY UPDATE HERE)
Alshon Jeffery 3 receptions, 46 yards
Zach Miller: 3 receptions, 31 yards, 1 TD
Kudos, Chicago Bears. You got a win. Up next: Indianapolis Colts