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Chicago Bears vs New York Jets Preview: What to Watch For

Coming off of another sloppy, yet close loss, can the Bears get healthy versus a short-handed Jets squad?

New England Patriots v Chicago Bears Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Chicago Bears are trying to get back over over .500 after falling back to 3-3 following a tough loss to the Patriots last Sunday. The Jets team that will invade Soldier Field this Sunday is beat up. Even without injuries to key players, this was a game that most Bears fans had put in the win column.

While the Jets aren’t necessarily a bad team, they aren’t really a good team either. With the way that the Bears have played the last 2 weeks, the Jets might be just what the doctor ordered. This Bears team is out-of-sorts. From questionable decisions by head coach Matt Nagy, to some erratic throws from Mitch Trubisky, to who knows what from Vic Fangio, it’s match-ups like this one that can get a team back on-track. A lot of members of this organization will be looking for a bounce-back game this Sunday.

For a burgeoning playoff contender, these are the games you need to win, but you have to play the game right. Last week was, hopefully an aberration, but this is what I will be watching for this Sunday:

What to Watch For

On offense, I would like to see Nagy come out and try and get Trubisky into a rhythm early in the game. Whether that be a quick slant, a wide receiver screen, a crossing route, a designed roll-out, or even designing an easy dump off to Jordan Howard, get the rhythm going early in this game and let Trubisky settle into the game plan. The last thing the Bears can afford is to have him missing throws all over the field.

For the ground game, Nagy said something interesting in his Wednesday press conference. He blamed the scheme for the lack of a solid running game. I have been on this train since he was first hired in January, so this is music to my ears. If the Bears get back to the outside zone, do we finally see Howard have a huge game? I am very interested to see how this in particular plays out.

Defensively, it will be all about making rookie quarterback Sam Darnold uncomfortable. This has been an area that the Bears have really struggled in the past 2 weeks. Fangio is going to need to use his players to their strengths in order to do this. The Jets don’t have much of a running game, especially with Bilal Powell out for the season. The plan of attack should be to pressure Darnold from kickoff to final whistle and not let up. Darnold is leading the NFL in interceptions, and what better way to add to that total than to be in his face all day on Sunday?

That’s what I will be watching for on Sunday afternoon, what about you? The Bears lost an ugly one last Sunday, but they should be able to rebound against this Jets team.

Watch out for my ‘which players to watch for’ coming later today.