Will the Chicago Bears bounce back versus the Saints in Week 8?
The Chicago Bears must find a way to be balanced versus the Saints
From a strategic perspective, Nagy needs to resolve himself to having a balanced offensive attack against the Saints defense. It is not enough for the Bears to decide to attack a Saints secondary that is asking to be attacked. The Saints secondary has given up many big plays. However, the Bears have to set those passes up with an even balance between run and pass.
The decline of Nagy’s offense since late in the 2018 season is not a puzzle. The reason his offense has struggled for almost two years is that it is predictable. Earlier this season their offense clicked when Nagy started using play-action mixed in with run plays. The Chicago Bears have to both run the football and attack the Saints secondary.
The Bears best pass catcher, Allen Robinson, will be able to play this game after passing the concussion protocols. The Bears also have a dynamic weapon in Darnell Mooney. In Los Angeles, Mooney faked All-Pro Jalen Ramsey out of his jockstrap to set up what easily could have been a 95-yard touchdown. If he can do that to Ramsey, he can certainly do it again to a New Orleans secondary that has given up lots of long passes this season. Use the run to set this up and the Bears will be cooking.
On the other side of the ball, Chuck Pagano has to do what he has done all season. That is, call another bend but don’t break game plan using, primarily if not exclusively, four-man rushes. Blitzing Drew Brees rarely, if ever, is a good idea. Pagano is really good at moving his guys upfront around to find ways to pressure the quarterback.
If the offense can just do their part by scoring some points and eating up some time of possession the defense should be able to contain a banged-up Saints offense. What will make it easier for the Chicago Bears to contain the Saints is that their left tackle is nursing an injured elbow and is questionable for the game.
With all the injuries the Saints have, the one guy the defense has to focus on is Alvin Kamara. Kamara is deadly both on the ground and through the air. They have other good weapons on offense in tight end Jared Cook, wideout, Tre’Quan Smith, and running back, Latavius Murray. These guys are good but Kamara is great. Their focus should be to contain Kamara and hopefully the others will do little damage.