I remember the good old days.
Back when the Chicago Bears were a first place team.
Way back on October 21, 2018.
The 3-3 Bears went from first to worst with their loss at home to the New England Patriots on Sunday. Wins by the Minnesota Vikings (4-2-1) and Detroit Lions (3-3), along with the inactivity of the Green Bay Packers (3-2-1), dropped Chicago to the cellar of the NFC North.
Besides the Bears’ loss, here’s what really pissed me off on Sunday. The Lions beat the Dolphins in Miami with the game-plan I wanted the Bears to use when they traveled to South Beach a couple weeks ago. The Lions, who have been one of the worst running teams the last several years, pounded the Dolphins with 30 runs from their running backs. For some reason, Chicago head coach Matt Nagy hasn’t figured out how to use Pro Bowl running back Jordan Howard. He’s still trying to figure out his offense, I get that, but he should figure out how to get that guy more quality touches.
Now let’s stroll through a few power rankings to see where they rank the Bears.
SB Nation moved the Bears up 1 spot after their loss, to 11th, and they gave their thoughts on the NFC North.
(The bold below is mine)
The NFC North is a weird division right now. The Bears were in first place, now they’re tied for last with the Lions. The Vikings and Packers have been up-and-down and even finished their first head-to-head matchup with a tie. The Lions were blown out by the Jets, beat the Patriots with relative ease, and just this week beat the Dolphins by 11. No team has proven to be the division’s top threat, though the Bears may be, despite landing on the bottom of the standings after their loss to the Patriots. The NFC North is the only division in which no team has a losing record and the standings will likely keep changing until the end of Week 17.
That’s an interesting take.
ESPN only moved the Bears down 1 spot, to 12th overall, and they gave their thoughts on who needs to step up.
Need more from: RB Jordan Howard. Howard is averaging only 3.46 yards per rush, which ranks 41st out of 47 qualifying running backs. Bears running backs as a whole rank 30th with 1.45 yards after contact per rush, and Mitchell Trubisky has led the team in rushing in two of the past three games.
Here’s how Yahoo has it this week.
14. Chicago Bears (3-3, LW: 13)
I’m still not too worried about the Bears. Two special-teams breakdowns are what killed them in Sunday’s loss to the Patriots. The offense had 453 yards and 31 points, and while the defense has had two bad games, there’s a lot of talent on that side and they’ll rebound. Don’t bury these guys yet.
The USA Today has Chicago like this.
15. Bears (15): Mitch Trubisky is glad we only obsess over pass efficiency, not run efficiency. (FYI, shortest distance between two points is a straight line.)
Here’s how Sports Illustrated has it.
18. Chicago Bears (3-3)
Last Week’s rank: 18
The Bears were 3-1 before starting a four-game tour of the AFC East. They need to take care of business against the Jets and Bills to keep pace in a tough NFC North.
The Washington Post has it like this.
16. Chicago Bears (3-3) | Last Week’s Rank: 15
The Bears came up a yard shy of a tying TD on the Hail Mary against the Patriots. This was a far less egregious loss than falling to Brock Osweiler and the Dolphins a week earlier. But it was still a loss.
The Sporting News has the Bears down one spot.
16. Chicago Bears 3-3 (last week: 15)
Mitchell Trubisky and the offense have become a fun, unpredictable and mostly explosive roller-coaster ride, but the defense is showing it has plenty of leaks behind Khalil Mack.
The Bears stay at 11th according to NFL.com.
The opportunities were there for the Bears, who took it to the Patriots in the first half Sunday. The second half was a different story, as Chicago was stuck in catch-up mode. Unfortunately, despite the 31 points on offense, the Saints they’re not. Before connecting with his wideouts three times on the final drive -- including Kevin White on that startling Hail Mary -- Trubiskers only managed to complete five of his passes to wide receivers. Most of his 22 completions up to that point had been to the backs and tight ends. Even with Taylor Gabriel’s resurgence, the Bears must develop an air attack outside.
The Chicago Tribune really dropped the Bears down their ranking.
17. Bears 3-3 (13)
Off to an 0-2 start against the AFC East. The Jets and Bills are up in the next two weeks, so 2-2 isn’t too much to ask.
Besides the local Chicago Tribune, the NFL pundits aren’t down on the Bears.
What do you guys think about the rankings this week?