Anyone who’s been doubting the Bears has had this game circled on the calendar as the best test they will have to prove (or disprove) their worth before the playoffs. And let’s be honest, most of us have doubted whether the Bears success this season is completely legitimate. It’s just been too much too soon to be entirely comfortable with it. The Rams aren’t a perfect team. Nobody in the NFL is. But they’re undeniably the biggest beast on the Bears regular season schedule this season.
The Bears have swiped, jawed, pawed, mawed, and clawed that beast into the turf.
The strength vs strength prize goes to the Bears defense
The Bears haven’t seen an offense as good as the Rams this year, and the Rams haven’t seen a defense as good as the Bears. In a league where offensive teams are dominating and some analysts will make it sound like defense is going the way of the fullback, the Bears are still here to remind everyone that no fancy offense is going to leave Chicago without paying a price. By the end of the game, Jared Goff was looking spooked, and the whole Rams unit was looking like somebodies little brother who’d just had the difficulty increased in Madden for the first time and was ready to throw the controller across the room.
Eddie Goldman can dance if he wants to
Apparently he didn’t want to, but you know doubt appreciate my reference to the classic Men Without Hats hit “Safety Dance.” Even if Goldman doesn’t dance, he’s a friend of mine. What a beautiful thing to see a Bear burst through a pair of blockers and throw a terrified skinny boy to the ground. Nothing says defensive domination like a couple of safety points.
Trubisky aggressive and confident despite mistakes
At times, it looked like Biscuit’s passes fired a little too fast for the Bears receivers, but it was clear he was eager to let that pigskin sing coming back from a two week rest. His first drive ended in an overthrow to Josh Bellamy which was picked by Marcus Peters, but he came out firing on the second drive. Starting with a burner to Trey Burton on a 1st quarter 2nd and 20ish, that drive showed off plenty of well-placed fastballs which landed softly in the Bears’ receiver gloves. Yes, he threw too more picks, one a poor decision and the other an overthrow, Biscuit’s ability to bounce back with confidence has consistently impressed me, and may be the trait that leaves me with the most hope for his future.
Ideally, he’ll have less opportunities to show he can bounce back as his career progresses.
Roquan forcing people to take notice
Sure, averaging 10 tackles a game over a 5 game stretch is cool, but it’s not flashy. Intercepting Jared Goff and running it back to the 4 yard line on the other hand is going to find its way onto all of tomorrow’s highlight reels. He almost did it again on the following drive but some pesky blades of grass got in the way and it was ruled incomplete. He still takes longer than we’d like to shed blocks at times, and that allowed Gurley a couple of extra yards on one occasion, but those were some of the only yards Gurley got, so I can’t be mad. Either way, the value he adds in the pass defense is unequivocally worth it.
Khalil Mack with a Sack and a Forced Fumble
But the man could only cover Robert Woods one-on-one for a few seconds. Might need to upgrade this off-season. Or maybe just not assign an edge rusher to cover a wide receiver? What do I know. Vic Fangio just called a beautiful game.
Also, how many sacks did Aaron Donald get? It looks like zero of his two tackles were sacks, but that can’t be right?
Allen Robinson with back to pack penalties from 1st and goal
There’s only one AR12 I want to see drawing penalties two plays in a row, and he doesn’t play on the Bears. Presumably Allen was trying to make more space for him to have a heroic touchdown catch on a post route, but Bradley Robey-Coleman foiled that plan on third down and the Bears were forced to kick a field goal.
The Bears definitely need to focus some practice time on avoiding illegal formation penalties. There have been way too many this year.
The run blocking is starting to come together
Nagy’s offense is a new system to everyone on the O line but Bryan Witzmann, and maybe it just took some time for everyone to get on the same page. No matter the reason, the run blocking looked better than it has all year today and Jordan Howard took it and ran. This is as reassuring a game for his potential as a continued staple of this offense as any this season.
Two weeks: two big bear touchdowns
Last week Akiem Hicks took the hand-off and munched up a touchdown with ease. This week, the Bears capitalized on the threat of Hicks to fake to him and throw to backup offensive lineman Bradley Sowell. I didn’t really understand why that guy was on the team considering his mediocre blocking and penchant for unnecessary penalties. Clearly it’s his soft hands. Good showing, Brad!
Amukamara pads his stats with another 4th down interception
I’ll forgive him for the field disadvantage this cost the Bears, since it also sealed the win.
Sean McVay wastes two timeouts for last-minute play call changes
At least, presumably that’s what they were for. He certainly could have used them at the end to give his offense a chance at another fruitless drive.
There’s no more doubting these Bears. They’re headed to the playoffs and have as legitimate a claim to compete as any team in the NFL.
I would have liked to see more success from the Bears offense, but the fact that we didn’t meant we got to see so much more domination from the Bears defense. This was a truly transcendent performance from a unit perfectly in sync, protecting their turf, angry over a sloppy loss a week ago. If the Bears were only going to have one unit dominate today, this is what we all wanted to see.
Our beloved Bears are winners and the league-darling Rams are losers. This is a good day.