The Chicago Bears are trying to get some good vibes heading into the offseason, and winning two of their last three games have helped with that. The NFC North champion Minnesota Vikings are up next, and since they are playing for a first round bye it’ll be a tough one for the reigning AFC North Champion Bears.
The Eagles have the first seed locked up, but that second seed is still up for grabs. Minnesota has something to play for, so they’ll be going for it.
Let’s take a peek around the NFL Power Rankings to see how the Bears are thought of by the national pundits.
SB Nation is keeping their “hope” theme alive by ranking based on “the current state of mind for each team and fan base.” They have the Bears at 22nd after being 25th last week.
Over at ESPN they have the Bears like this, and as a reminder they shared their preseason prediction for Chicago’s 2017 win total (5.5).
28. Chicago Bears
2017 record: 5-10
Week 16 ranking: No. 29
5.5 wins: A trip to Minnesota in Week 17 could keep Chicago from reaching six wins, but the Bears are close to that mark thanks to Jordan Howard. If Howard can rush for another touchdown in Week 17, he'd be the first Chicago player with 1,000 rushing yards and 10 rushing touchdowns in a season since Raymont Harris in 1997.
NFL.com has the Bears up one to 23rd.
Classic Bears football on Sunday: The field looked like the top of a cinnamon roll, while the defense dominated against an old NFL opponent. Even the score felt 1965-ish. That was the year Chicago introduced two new dynamic rookies to the football world: Gale Sayers and Dick Butkus, both of whom became Hall of Famers.
Mitch Trubisky might have a long way to go. There are those who would like every rookie quarterback to be Deshaun Watson. But look no further than the team on the other sideline at Soldier Field wearing orange helmets and white jerseys with brown trim to see the struggle of a rookie starter. Trubisky is holding his own -- and he's doing far more than that when he takes off out of the pocket.
The Sporting News has it like this.
27. Chicago Bears (5-10): Mitchell Trubisky has shown promise, and the Bears can throw a monkey wrench in the playoff picture by winning at Minnesota.
The Washington Post has it like this.
23. Chicago Bears (5-10) | Last Week’s Rank: 26
It hasn’t been a great rookie season at QB for Mitchell Trubisky. But it has been a necessary part of the learning process. Enough good things have happened for the Bears to hope that he makes a big jump in Year 2 and becomes a reliable starter.
The USA Today has the Bears up two spots to 25.
Over last three weeks, opponents averaging mere 260 yards against Chicago's defense – perhaps primary reason this team could roar in 2018.
Now for a ranking that actually matters, the 2018 NFL Draft order.
Chicago’s win on Sunday guaranteed the Browns will have the top pick in the draft, and as of right now the Bears are slated to pick 9th.
A loss (and some help) could push the Bears up to the 6th spot, and a win could move the Bears down to 13th overall.