Chicago Bears Week 10: Takeaways

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12.) The Bears secondary is getting better

The Rams aren’t known for their passing game and probably have one of the worst group of wide receivers in the league, but it’s still impressive to hold an NFL team under 200 passing yards (191). After a rough start to the season, Kyle Fuller has played three strong games in a row in coverage and continues to be a force against the run.

Tracy Porter had probably the two best 3rd down pass breakups of the game and blanketed whoever he was matched up against. Rookie slot corner Bryce Callahan had the hardest match-up verse slot receivers Tavon Austin and Wes Welker, but held his own and was just inches away from deflecting the ball on two of the catches he gave up.

The Bears seem to have found three competent corners who have put together a few good games in a row. Safeties Adrian Amos and Antrel Rolle both played solid if unspectacular games as well. As a whole it was arguably the best performance by the Bears secondary this season.

13.) The Bears played their cleanest game all year

The Bears had a season low 4 penalties for 44 yards. There were no pass interference calls, no dumb roughing the passer penalties, and even Vlad Ducasse didn’t have a false start for the first time all season! On the other hand, the Rams had twice as many penalties, three of which were on third down and one negated a Tavon Austin TD run. The Bears played smarter, cleaner football and it had a significant impact on the final score. I’m never going to like John Fox’s ultra conservative style, but he has the Bears playing significantly better football than they played last year and has implemented a winning mindset.

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

14.) The Rams safeties reminded me of Chris Conte and Major Wright

The Bears took two short passes 87 and 83 yards for touchdowns and the Rams safeties were nowhere to be found on either play. I haven’t seen that kind of incompetence at safety since Chris Conte and Major Wright were roaming the Bears secondary in 2013.

15.) The Bears WRs did a great job blocking on Sunday

Alshon Jeffery had a great block on Zach Miler’s long TD, Marquess Wilson blocked well on Jeremy Langford’s long catch, and Josh Bellamy had two good blocks on 1st down catch and runs. The Bears wide receiver depth chart may look much different next season, but fringe roster players like Wilson and Bellamy made a case for sticking around next year with excellent down field blocking.

16.) Playoffs?

After starting the season 0-3 it seemed more talk was focused on the Bears getting the #1 draft pick then making the playoffs, but after two consecutive wins the Bears record is 4-5 it’s not a joke to consider their chances making the playoffs. The Bears next two games (DEN, @GB) looked like sure losses on paper before the season, but with Broncos QB Peyton Manning likely out next week and the Packers losing three consecutive games neither win seems impossible.

Broncos QB Brock Osweiler will be making his first NFL start in likely a cold and hostile Solider Field and Aaron Rodgers is playing the worst football of his stellar career right now. With Jay Cutler playing his best football as a Bear and the team starting to believe they can beat anybody, the Bears have at least a chance of pulling out a victory in either game.

Even if the Bears can split their next two games leaving them at 5-6, they play only one team with a winning record (@MIN) over their last five games and could conceivable end the year with 9-10 wins, which would at least but them on the playoff radar. It’s a long shot, but the fact that it’s even conceivable is something I didn’t expect to be discussing this late in the season. Go Bears!