The Chicago Bears are in first place of the NFC North for the first time since week 16 of the 2013 season.
The Chicago Bears are sitting at 2-1, with wins over the Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals. Some could argue they should be 3-0 if it weren’t for poor play in the second half of an epic collapse in Green Bay.
But what’s the story behind this 2018 Bears team so far? It appears to be the same as it always has been, the defense is carrying the heavy weight of a lackluster offense. Khalil Mack has brought this defense to a new level, and the results are showing. Every single player on the Chicago defense is better with Mack on the field. Although a phenomenal defense is nice, that’s not what I’m going to talk about today. The offense has not been on par with what it should be.
The offense hasn’t been horrible, but it needs to improve if Chicago wants to contend with the better teams in the NFC. The defense is phenomenal, but they can’t put up enough points to win a football game. So what has the problem been offensively? It all comes down to second-year quarterback Mitch Trubisky and the run game.
The Chicago Bears will go as far as Mitch Trubisky can take them
A great defense can only take you so far; offensively you still need to perform. So far the Chicago offense has, but not well enough for anyone to be comfortable. The offense has struggled just as much as it’s succeeded so far in the young season. Understandably, the Bears are learning a brand new complex offense with all new personnel. Things aren’t going to look pretty the first few weeks, but things must improve in the next coming weeks if they are serious about contending by the end of the season.
Trubisky hasn’t looked terrible so far this season, but he hasn’t looked great either. This all comes back to his inexperience and learning the new scheme. Giving up on Trubisky this early would be insane, as he flashes potential to do everything at the position at a high level. He needs to put it all together. His footwork has been better, but could still be improved. His vision needs to improve, and his downfield accuracy could be better. But we’re talking about a kid, not everyone is going to have a Patrick Mahomes start to their career.
Speaking of which, the media loves to compare the two since Trubisky was drafted before him. I thought it should be mentioned that Trubisky had a total of 572 passing attempts in 13 starts in college. While Mahomes had 1,300+ attempts and Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson had 1,200+ attempts. Trubisky is going to be a work in progress as he is young at the position, only time will tell how he is going to perform and develop.
Something that will help Trubisky throughout the season is getting the run game going. Jordan Howard is arguably the best offensive player on the Chicago Bears. They need to get him the football and run downhill with him 20 times a game. He is a power runner and would do great things for this team if they can get him over 100 yards every game. This would open up play action passes, and allow the passing game to be easier for the young quarterback.
Coach Matt Nagy’s offense is a complex system, but if things start flowing well there is no doubt in my mind the Chicago Bears can be an elite football team. As of now, the offense is holding this team back. Thankfully the season is still young, so the team can afford to make errors and learn from them. Although, that isn’t going to last much longer.
The Bears need to show improvement on the offensive side of the ball, and quickly. Trubisky needs to show growth and be able to lead this offense consistently. If these things happen, the Chicago Bears will be a playoff team. If not, it will be the same old Chicago story. A great defense crippled by a poor offense. Don’t worry Chicago; there’s plenty of time for improvement in the 2018 season!