Clip and Save: Will Bears Miss Playoffs?!?!

There’s always one.  You know, the guy raining on the parade.  While Bears fans are puffy chested and checking airfare to Dallas after a thrilling 31-26 win over the Philadelphia Eagles, NFL.com’s Pat Kirwan isn’t convinced the Bears are ready for prime time.  In fact, he thinks the NFC North-leading Bears will miss the post-season.  Let’s look into his logic a bit after the jump.

Kirwan seeds the top 6 teams in each conference and adds one other team to the mix from each conference as the possible slide-in in case one of his top 6 slip up.  Kirwan has the Bears are the #7 seed in the NFC.  Let me boil down Kirwan’s rankings and how the stretch run in the NFC sets up.

1. Atlanta Falcons

Current Record = 9-2

Remaining Games: Home vs. New Orleans and Carolina; Away at Tampa Bay, Carolina and Seattle

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 22-33

Projected Record 12-4

2. Green Bay Packers

Current Record = 7-4

Remaining Games: Home vs. San Francisco, New York Giants and Bears; Away at Detroit and New England

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 29-25

Projected Record 12-4

3. Philadelphia Eagles

Current Record = 7-4

Remaining Games: Home vs. Houston, Minnesota and Dallas; Away at Dallas and New York Giants

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 22-33

Projected Record 11-5

4. St. Louis Rams

Current Record = 5-6

Remaining Games: Home vs. Kansas City and San Francisco; Away at Arizona, New Orleans and Seattle

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 26-27

Projected Record 8-8

WILD CARDS

5. New Orleans Saints

Current Record = 8-3

Remaining Games: Home vs. St. Louis and Tampa Bay; Away at Cincinnati, Baltimore and Atlanta

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 31-24

Projected Record 12-4

6. New York Giants

Current Record = 7-4

Remaining Games: Home vs. Washington and Philadelphia; Away at Minnesota, Green Bay and Washington

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 28-27

Projected Record 10-6

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN

7. Chicago Bears

Current Record = 8-3

Remaining Games: Home vs. New England and New York Jets; Away at Detroit, Minnesota and Green Bay

Remaining Opponents’ Record = 31-24

Projected Record 10-6

Kirwan’s Bears analysis:

Too close to leave out of the picture, especially since they currently sit in the No. 2 spot. The Bears defense is excellent, but the offense is inconsistent. They are hot right now with four straight wins, but they still have three road games and their two home games are against the Patriots and Jets. The remaining schedule is against teams with a 31-24 record. I project the Bears to go 10-6.

It’s hard to believe that 10 wins would keep the Bears out of the playoffs, but stranger things have happened.  When all is said and done, it could come down to the head-to-head tie-breaker loss with the Giants or that last game in Lambeau to decide if the Bears qualify for the postseason.  The good news?  The Bears control their own destiny, so keep winning and they can prove Kirwan, along with the scores of other doubters, dead wrong!

BEAR DOWN!!!

Tags: Pat Kirwan Playoff Picture Postseason

  • Frank

    Does he seriously have the Packers as the only team winning out, and the Bears only winning 2 more games? I suppose its possible, but I’m smelling more GB bias here than anything else, especially since the Packers were all of the “experts” picks to go to the Super Bowl this year. Ugh.

    • Boomer

      Couldn’t agree more. One of my guys made a point a couple of weeks ago that the media make up their story lines before the season and don’t let them go. They picked the Pack from the start of the season so now they’ll make a ridiculous 5-0 run to end the season to help fulfill their prophesy. Surprised they didn’t try to find a way to slide Brett Favre into the playoffs while they’re at it!

      • Mr. Pickles

        Agreed again. I find it especially frustrating the the Bears get no credit because “they haven’t beat anybody” while the Pack remains a Superbowl pick. Who have the Packers beat? Maybe the Eagles in week one, but they only had to face Vick for like a half. GB may have blowout a few opponents but the Bears absoolutely dominated Miami, Minn, and you could argue Philly as well, it just wasn’t reflected on the scoreboard. Their defenses are neck and neck as far as stats goes and the vaunted GB offense only scores 4.5 more point per game. To have GB as a Superbowl pick and the Bears on the outside is absurd. End rant.

        • Mr. Pickles

          I also think it’s insane that those schedules are nearly identical to end the season but the Pack goes 5-0 while da Bears go 2-3. Now I’m done.

  • JD in Richmond

    The Packers arent projected to lose a single game? Even though they travel to New England and still have to face the Giants (projected playoff team) and the Bears (projected 10-6 team?) Maybe the Pack finish 10-6 tied with Chicago then its up to a tiebreaker there.

    • Boomer

      I predict… Packers will lose at least 2 more games.

  • City

    The Packers lost their runningback! Does this guy really think the Packers can win out without a running game? I see them losing to either the Giants or the Bears, and the Pats.

    But I also see a very distinct possibility that the last game of the year MATTERS! Can you imagine what would happen if the Bears HAVE to beat the Packers to make the playoff, and their win knocks the Pack OUT!

  • windy Cynic

    Even someone named “Cynic” would have to agree with you guys. One impression that keeps appearing is that possibly, there are no real good teams this year. Indy looked awful. Pittsburgh should have lost. NE has weaknesses. Who are the Giants?

    Everytime I am willing to annoint one team, they fail. In that kind of environment, why not the Bears? The media creates it’s own “weather”, so maybe they are clutching at straws in the dark just like I do.

    When GB is well oiled, they are a tough club, but winning out doesn’t seem likely.

    I think our boys will make the playoffs, but I can easily see a first round exit.

    To consider a super bowl… wow. With a very poor offensive line, how? And it may happen…. That’s why they play the games boys.

    I’ll stay tuned.

    But it MUST NOT keep Lovie, Jerry and Ted’s jobs….. even a SB win!

  • deez

    I think the formula for the Bears making the playoffs boils down to winning against Green Bay. Even if the Bears go 2-2 and the Packers go 4-0 through their next 4 games, the Bears will win the division if they beat Green Bay in week 17.

    I say, let everyone keep picking against the Bears, we all know that there hasn’t been a true ‘best team’ in the NFC all year, so every team is beatable, especially the injured Packers.

  • deez

    And you wanna see why Kirwan picked the Bears to win only 10 games…..Check out his preseason prediction:

    Chicago Bears — My good buddy, former Bears QB Jim Miller, thinks the Bears will win 11 games this year. I’m not sure the team has that many wins in it, but I do think Jay Cutler will benefit greatly from offensive coordinator Mike Martz.

    http://www.nfl.com/news/story?id=09000d5d8184857e&template=with-video-with-comments&confirm=true