I have to admit, when I started researching for this post, I thought I was going to go another direction, but like any agile running back, you’ve got to see where the hole develops, hit it hard and accelerate through it.
My premise going into this post was going to be the added wrinkle that the Bears would have to face with Eddie Lacy and a more formidable running game. It’s certainly true that Eddie Lacy is tearing it up, especially over the last four games since he came back from a Brandon Meriwether concussion.
Just look at the stats so far this season:
That’s pretty impressive because the Packers haven’t had a consistent runner over the last few seasons and are more known for the Aaron Rodgers-led passing attack. This added dimension could make the Packers offense tough to deal with.
Then I dove into the box scores, just looking back at the latest six game losing streak the Bears are currently mired in since 2011. Look over the last six games – all Bears losses – and you’ll see the Packers haven’t been too shabby in the ground game against the Bears.
The Packers have been averaging just shy of 100 yards per game on the Bears and that is when the defense was pretty decent with running backs like James Starks, Ryan Grant, Cedric Benson and Alex Green. Who?
While it’s true that Lacy could have himself a field day against this defense that has been awful against the run, it’s not like the Bears haven’t been giving up chunks of yardage to Packers runner over the last several games. The difference? This time, the Packers could have a single running back go off for 100 yards against the Bears instead of the handful of backs that have been nickel and diming the Bears on the ground over seasons past.
Then again, Lacy could go for about 200 and give Aaron Rodgers and his banged up receiver corps the night off and prove me wrong yet again.
If the Bears want to stand any chance on Monday night, they need to make the Packers one-dimensional and shut down the running game. Yes, even if that means that Aaron Rodgers wears out his arm. It’s something they haven’t done during their six-game losing streak.