EDITOR: This started out as a bye week roundtable question posed to our staff, asking them to give us their keys for the Chicago Bears to finish the 2020 season, but with some of our team really elaborating on their answers we decided to give each “plan” to finish the year a spotlight of its own.
I might be the only one here that still wants to see the Bears make one last push for the playoffs....
So with that said, I want the Bears to do the following:
1) Replace Nick Foles with Mitchell Trubisky. To me, Foles’s play the last 4 weeks has lost him the privilege of being the starting QB for Chicago. Overall, the offense has regressed with Foles under center. For the one highlight of beating a tough Bucs team, he’s put up appalling numbers against two of the league’s worst defenses in recent weeks. So there’s no point in the argument of, “oh he knows what the defense is throwing at him and knows where to go with the ball.” He’s been hot garbage, and missed open receivers while looking completely lost when the Bears are on offense. He’s lost four straight games, and is 2-5 overall as the starting QB, or 3-5 if you want to count his heroics at Atlanta.
I also don’t like how Foles has carried himself attitude-wise. He just seems defeated, bickers with the head coach, and hasn’t played with a high sense of urgency. Right now, Trubisky’s attitude and mobility will be what the offense needs at QB. Plus, Bill Lazor called quite a few roll-outs in his play-calling debut, which makes more sense to call with a mobile QB under center as opposed to a statue like Foles. Use Trubisky’s athleticism to at least make the defense account for an additional runner. Furthermore, for those wanting to save money moving forward, sitting Foles will ensure he doesn’t receive anymore incentives on his contract. I’m challenging Matt Nagy to hold Nick Foles accountable for poor performance like how he held Mitchell Trubisky accountable for the same thing.
2) Have Bill Lazor go back to lining up under center more frequently with Trubisky as his QB. Whether it was pretty, or not, the game plan utilized in the first two weeks on offense actually worked. There was, somewhat, an identity beginning to develop. Then, on cue, Mitchell Trubisky stunk up the field at Atlanta which prompted Matt Nagy to pull the trigger and bench Mitch. Ever since then, the ground game has been non-existent, and the Bears have been the pass-happiest team in the NFL. Not a single QB in Chicago stands a chance without some semblance of a ground game. A balance, PA-based passing game makes the most sense for Chicago during these last six game.
3) Someone needs to remind Chuck Pagano who he has on defense. His game plan against the Vikings was soft and borderline cowardly. You have Khalil Mack, Akiem Hicks, Roquan Smith, and some expensive free agent named Robert Quinn who play at their best when on the attack. You have Kyle Fuller, Jaylon Johnson, Eddie Jackson, and Tashaun Gipson in the secondary. Quit being so damn soft and attack the opposing offenses. That’s the only way to force sacks and turnovers at this point. I’d also like to see a change at Nickel, by playing one of the youngster DBs over Buster Skrine.
4) It’s time to see this franchise do their homework on possible Team President and GM candidates. After having time to think about Ryan Pace — and I’ve defended him many times over the years — I can’t trust him with picking the next QB. His plan of drafting a QB every year since 2015 never materialized; Mitchell Trubisky is the only QB he’s picked since taking over as GM. And not a single QB he signed, traded for, or drafted have been able to replace Jay Cutler. Let alone to bring a credible long-term answer. It would also be really nice to see a change happen at Team President.
For people saying, “but he isn’t involved with the business side of the Bears,” just keep in mind that he’s the guy who’s hired every GM since Jerry Angelo. He’s had Jerry Angelo, Phil Emery, and Ryan Pace and not one of them have yielded any Super Bowl championships. Ted Phillips is as responsible as anyone else at Halas Hall for this mess. Will George McCaskey make such a move? I have no idea. But accountability needs to be held at the very top; no more free passes for the 30-year tenure of Ted Phillips.