Bears vs Packers: Inside the Matchups
Sep 28, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler (6) fumbles the ball against the Green Bay Packers during the first half at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
When the Bears Have the Ball
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The Bears brings their 19th ranked offense into Lambeau against the Packers 25th ranked defense. On the surface, it would seem this should be a favorable matchup for the Bears, but we’ve all been here before. We know that the Bears can move the ball; they kinda/sorta kept up with the Packers in the first half of their first matchup earlier this season at Soldier Field. That’s not the problem. You know who is the problem. More on him in a minute.
Bears Rushing Offense (18th, 102.5 YPG) vs Packers Rush Defense (32nd, 153.5 YPG)
Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
The common theme that we’ve heard over the bye week and the early pre-game hype is the term balance. Balance means “give the ball to Forte more.” I don’t think those words should ring hollow this week. The Packers have a horrible rush defense. How horrible? Like 2013 Bears rush defense bad. Even though the Bears offensive line will be without left guard Matt Slauson, Michael Ola should fill in more than adequately. The key for the Bears is to stay close enough to the Packers to make it reasonable to keep running the ball.
If the Bears can stay within a score or two, there’s no reason not to get Forte at least 20-25 carries. I’d also like to see more out of rookie Ka’Deem Carey. He’s done decently in his limited opportunities. The Bears can’t expect Forte to have as many touches in the second half of the season as he did in the first half. If they have any hopes of saving some tread on Matt Forte’s tires, they’d best start using their rookie runner more.