The 2018 Chicago Bears are Eerily Similar to 2013 Seahawks

SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 23: Mitchell Trubisky #10 of the Chicago Bears scrambles with the ball against the San Francisco 49ers during their NFL game at Levi's Stadium on December 23, 2018 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - DECEMBER 23: Mitchell Trubisky #10 of the Chicago Bears scrambles with the ball against the San Francisco 49ers during their NFL game at Levi's Stadium on December 23, 2018 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

The 2018 Chicago Bears draw heavy similarities to the 2013 Seattle Seahawks.

Earlier in the year, few had the Chicago Bears being in the position they are right now. Even fewer believed that the Bears really did execute the Los Angeles Rams‘ 2017 blueprint effectively. Going into the season, I believed that this Rams comparison was obvious and wrote and discussed it profusely. But this observation may be flawed and that too may be a good thing.

The 2018 Chicago Bears are more similar to the Seattle Seahawks than they are the Rams. While this may throw off some and disincentivize others, allow me to explain.

Heavily Scrutinized Quarterbacks

Russell Wilson was drafted in the third round of the 2012 draft and when he came out was immediately doubted for not only his size but inability to beat out his predecessors in college. That’s right Wilson transferred from NC State because Mike Glennon was seen as a better option.

Mitch Trubisky had his share of qualms as well. A lot of fans, analysts, pundits, didn’t like the decision to trade up one spot to nab him. They too knacked Trubisky for not being able to start over former Tar Heel Marquise Williams until Mitch’s senior year.

Both quarterbacks are former baseball products (Wilson much more than Trubisky) who had better than advertised athleticism with good work ethic and likable qualities. Wilson may be more athletic overall and have a little more shiftiness, but Trubisky doesn’t trail heavily behind in either quality. Both came in and took the starting job of veteran quarterbacks who were well-paid to come in and raise a franchise (Matt Flynn & Mike Glennon).

They both excel at making throws outside of the pocket, can make big plays with their legs, and have earned respect from their respective locker rooms as soon as they entered the league.

Wilson’s 2013 Stats:

3,357 passing yards, 26 TDs, 9 INTs, 63.14%, 101.4 passer rating; 539 rushing yards, one TD

Trubisky’s 2018 Stats:

3,060 passing yards, 24 TDs, 12 INTs, 66.4%, 96.0 passer rating; 405 rushing yards, three TDs

While I’m not saying Trubisky will traject to Wilson’s current productivity, keep in mind that Trubisky is in year one in a new offensive system while Wilson was in his second year with OC Darrell Bevell.

Behind An Elite Defense

It’d be unwise to believe that Russell Wilson’s development wasn’t expedited by that strong defense of 2013. Mitch Trubisky has one of his own.

I remember when Earl Thomas III, Richard Sherman, Bobby Wagner, Kam Chancellor, etc, etc, formed one of the most formidable units this league has ever seen. The Bears possess a unit that holds up admirably to the 2013 Seahawks group.

Adrian Amos is the thumper in the backfield much like Chancellor. Eddie Jackson is the playmaking safety similar to Thomas III. Kyle Fuller comparing to Richard Sherman is a stretch, but his seven interceptions this season would argue otherwise. Followed by a linebacking corp of Roquan Smith and Danny Trevathan matching up well against Bobby Wagner and KJ Wright, and a pass rush that may favor the Bears headlined by Khalil Mack.

2013 Seattle Defense:

4,378 yards, 16 passing TDs allowed, 4 rushing, 28 INTs, 4 defensive TDs

2018 Chicago Defense:

4,631 yards, 21 passing TDs allowed, 5 rushing, 27 INTs, 6 defensive TDs

Those comparisons are strikingly close and one has to believe that Trubisky is benefiting in many of the same ways that Wilson was able to thanks to the defense. With a unit playing like the two listed above, a young QB’s confidence must go up as well as his literal opportunities to touch the ball and score in favorable positions.

High-Energy Coaches

Pete Carroll much like first year coach Matt Nagy, are guys that teach with emotion. They handle locker rooms, disputes, casual day-to-day interactions differently than that of a Bill Belichick, or John Fox, or even an Andy Reid.

Nagy is a fiery, offensive mind that forms strong relationships with each of his players while also demanding focus and respect. Carroll, a former standout coach at USC, came into the NFL with that same collegiate energy and defensive brilliance. While Carroll struggled that initial year before acquiring Wilson, Matt Nagy has come and turned around a group that went 5-11 the previous year to an 11-5 contender.

Both guys joined an organization with a GM that drafts well and had a strong intent to change the culture. John Schneider of the Seahawks is the winningest coach in team history and his draft resume may be equally as impressive:

Wilson, Wagner, Sherman, Wright, Doug Baldwin, Frank Clark, Bruce Irvin, Tyler Locket.

Schneider may be the best GM in the league, but Ryan Pace may have made a case for Executive of The Year in 2018. Not only has Pace made some truly gutsy calls to change a franchise that endured a strenuous Marc Trestman era, he’s done so with no remorse. While both GM’s drafts are notorious for their differing demonstrations of conviction for their quarterbacks, both have drafted impactful players at other positions as well. Pace’s notable draft list includes:

Trubisky, Jackson, Amos, Smith, Goldman, Cohen, Leonard Floyd, Bilal Nichols, Cody Whitehair.

More from Bear Goggles On

I guess the overall comparison between the 2013 Seahawks and the 2018 Chicago Bears reside in the arm of Mitch Trubisky. If that were the case, many would automatically discount the Bears at having any chance to do anything in the foreseeable future. But if the numbers above and similarities mentioned didn’t resonate enough, remember that in Wilson’s 2014 Super Bowl run he threw for three touchdowns and no interceptions in that playoff run. Mitch can do the same I’m sure.

Both teams possess league-dominating defenses and culture changing coaches with innovative minds on their sides of the ball. Both teams benefited from a general manager that was willing to take risks and disregard intensive criticism.

With Trubisky and Co. a year ahead of schedule in their development, could they make a run in similar fashion to the Seahawks?