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Bears slowly suffocate the slightly inferior Panthers for statement 6th win of the Eberflus era

It’s a good week when you can both win and improve the value of one of your draft picks.

Carolina Panthers v Chicago Bears Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

It’s finally here. It’s the one game of the season when the Bears fan in us who wants the Bears to win at all costs and the Bears fan in us who knows this is a lost season and wants the Bears to get the most draft capital can join forces and root as one. It’s a rare opportunity when winning a game increases a team’s chances of getting the #1 overall pick.

Add in the DJ Moore and D’Onta Foreman revenge game factor and the Staley Da Bear needing to prove his superiority over a cat that tries too hard to look like a bear, and this feels like as much of a must-win game as you can get as a 2 and 7 team.

Don’t screw this up, Bears!

Box Score

Let DJ RAC up those yards

Smart play by Getsy to start the game with a screen to DJ Moore and let that extra revenge game juice boost him down the field for an easy first down.

Update: they waited til the third drive to do it again, and it worked again. Just keep feeding that Bear!

Bryce Young left his last game with some broken eggs

And he looks to be starting this one trying to make an omelet the way he’s scrambling on third downs.

Wait. It’s the Ihmir Smith-Marsette revenge game?

The former Bear, who was ruthlessly cut after generously contributing to last year's first-overall-pick campaign, clearly had something to prove today, earning the first touchdown of the game with a 79-yard punt return touchdown.

Bears got a sack!

I knew they could do it. The goal of the defensive line on passing plays, and the Bears did it on third down and forced a punt. Mission accomplished!

Update: The Bears got a SECOND SACK! Both inside the Panthers 10 yard line, and both forcing a 4th down. Beautiful stuff.

Tyler Scott is getting more involved in the offense

We thought this might happen with Bagent under center since the two had so much chemistry together in camp and preseason. He was pretty quiet the last few games but got involved early today, including a crucial 4th down catch in traffic.

Montez may not be getting sacks, but he is making Young perspire

His pressures aren’t showing up on the stat sheet yet, but he’s passing the eye test, and even the stats nerds at Amazon are noticing his impact.

Bears end the half with a good drive

Aside from the punt return touchdown, Chicago has looked like the slightly better team so far. That’s a little embarrassing for Sir Purr’s team, considering Chicago is paying with an undrafted rookie quarterback while Carolina is starting the 1st overall pick.

I’m starting to trust this Bears defense

I actually believe they can hold their own against an offense whose best receiver is 33 years old. The Carolina Panthers could use a number 1 wide receiver, or at least a solid running back like D’Onta Foreman.

This offense might just be good enough

There have been plenty of missed opportunities tonight, but the run and short pass game are working good enough to move the ball against a defense missing several starters.

Kyler Gordon is turning into one of the Bears' best defenders

He’s been great in coverage and run support and making less mistakes than the average Bear. Eberflus does have a history of developing terrific slot cornerbacks, and dare I say, it may be working out with Gordon.

Piniero might have had some Augusta silence flashbacks

It’s hard to imagine Panthers’ kicker Eddie Piniero didn’t have some memories of his awkward time with the Chicago Bears when asked to try to tie the game with a 59-yard field goal attempt at Soldier Field. I like to think everything Matt Nagy put him through ultimately paid off tonight when he missed that kick.

It’s fun to see the Bears defense reliably contain an anemic offense. The Bears offense clearly has a limited ceiling with Bagent, but Fields will surely blow the roof off of it when he comes back.

Best week so far this season?