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NFL Power Rankings: Bears the big mover this week

NFL: Houston Texans at Chicago Bears Quinn Harris-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bears picked up their first win in nearly two months, and sure, it was against the horrendous Houston Texans, but a win is a win, and when a team is riding a six game skid all that matters is flipping that open sign on Club Dub.

The Bears kept themselves alive for an NFC wildcard spot, and with the way the 2020 season has gone, who knows what will happen if they make it to the playoffs.

We’ve seen plenty of wildcard teams get hot and go on runs, and these Bears still have a ferocious defense, so if the offense can turn a corner we could be looking at some magic.

There’s a lot of “ifs” that need to happen for this team to succeed, but if the benching of Mitch Trubisky really got him to refocus and dial in on the mental side of things, and if the change in play caller can lead to more efficiency and balance, and if the defense can get back to rushing the passer and taking the ball away, then maybe, just maybe...

But first thing’s first, the Bears need to take care of business and beat the Minnesota Vikings this Sunday.

Now let’s see what the experts have to say as we go around some NFL Power Rankings.

The Bears are up 3 spots to 26th overall according to NFL.com.

Bears fans have no sense of humor left to spare on the subject of Mitchell Trubisky, so we hope you held off on your mocking commentary after Trubisky outplayed draft-mate Deshaun Watson in Chicago’s 36-7 win over the Texans on Sunday. Nothing is ever going to change the franchise-altering events of April 27, 2017, but we imagine the last two weeks have been purifying for Trubisky, a man who still aspires to have a successful NFL career even if he knows he’ll never fully escape the towering shadows cast by his draftmates. The Bears are headed toward changes, potentially sweeping changes, and Trubisky is essentially in the midst of a month-long audition for the rest of football. So far, so good.

Here’s how the USA Today has it.

23. Bears (25): No idea why they don’t switch to the Michigan-esque throwbacks full time given Chicago is 3-0 in 1936-era uniforms since reviving them in 2019.

ESPN went with a traditional power ranking in putting the Bears at 21 this week, plus they ranked each team’s phases according to their Football Power Index.

Offense: 27
Defense: 5
Special teams: 23

The disparity between Chicago’s offense and defense is huge. The Bears and quarterback Mitchell Trubisky have played much better offensively the past three weeks, but their overall body of work is subpar. The Bears spent most of the season struggling to score points, run the football or convert on third down. Conversely, the defense has been relatively sturdy, led by third-year linebacker Roquan Smith, who has performed at an All-Pro level. Chicago’s special teams are better than the rankings indicate. Veteran kicker Cairo Santos has converted 18 consecutive field goal attempts, making him the first Bears kicker to do so since Robbie Gould in 2006, and kickoff returner Cordarrelle Patterson is a threat to score every time he touches the ball. — Jeff Dickerson

Here’s how the Sporting News has it.

18. Chicago Bears 6-7 (22)

The Bears showed their full offensive potential by ripping apart the Texans’ defense with Mitchell Trubisky and David Montgomery. They might want to think about giving Matt Nagy another year to build on that.

Athlon Sports jumped the Bears way up to 19 from 26.

Guess Mitchell Trubisky didn’t want to hear all that Deshaun Watson/Bears draft talk on Sunday. Apparently his defense didn’t either.

Bleacher Report has the Bears at 21.

High: 20
Low: 21
Last Week: 26

It’s been a while since Chicago Bears fans had something to cheer about. After starting the 2020 campaign 5-1, the Bears completely fell apart in a six-game skid that exposed just how offensively limited they were.

Blowing out an equally flawed Texans team doesn’t fix what ails the Bears. Nor should it necessarily affect Matt Nagy’s status as head coach after the season.

But it had to be fun nonetheless. It was a fleeting glimpse of what could be in Chicago.

When David Montgomery is running the ball effectively, it opens up passing lanes for Mitchell Trubisky. When Trubisky has a clean pocket and some confidence, he’s capable racking up yardage with throws to star wideout Allen Robinson II. And when the offense pulls its weight, Khalil Mack and the defense can get after the opposing quarterback.

If the Bears could put together an effort like this more than once every few months, they might be on to something.

CBS Sports has the Bears as their big mover of the week, up 9 sports, all the way to 17.

Mitch Trubisky has played decent football since coming back from being benched. The Bears are still alive.

Yahoo Sports has the Bears ranked this way.

19. Chicago Bears (6-7, LW: 21)

For anyone who wants to cite a quarterback’s “record” as a real stat, just know that Mitchell Trubisky (.574, 27-20) has a better career winning percentage than Deshaun Watson (.560, 28-22). A reminder: QBs shouldn’t be assigned individual records.