Chicago Bears: 3 Losers from Week 2 vs the Bengals

Chicago Bears - Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports
Chicago Bears - Credit: Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Chicago Bears were able to hold on and beat the Cincinnati Bengals at home in Week 2, and it was a gritty performance all around with the defense carrying most of the weight. In every win there are still areas of improvement. A few areas stood out more than others, and those will need to be addressed going forward.

A few players will come out of Week 2 as losers even though they won

Chicago Bears Loser No. 1: Duke Shelley

It is clear that the Bears are weak in the secondary. While Jaylon Johnson looks to be the guy at the CB1 spot, the names behind him are not so hot. Kindle Vildor has played okay so far this year, but the potential is there with him. He has shown flashes and could possibly develop into a serviceable boundary corner.

Duke Shelley has been awful to start the year. He was a healthy scratch in Week 1 and was the primary slot cornerback quarterback in Week 2. He has been getting targeted with great success for opposing offenses.

The Bears had Bryce Callahan a few years ago and he was great for the team. Buster Skrine was brought in after that and did not play up to expectations. After a secondary overhaul, Shelley found himself as the starting slot corner, and it has not been great so far.

Watching him operate it seems his awareness is not high enough to play at a competent level and he does not have crazy athleticism to make up for it. Joe Burrow and Tyler Boyd found a nice rhythm in Sunday’s game through the slot connection, and multiple times I found myself asking why Shelley was giving Boyd so much room on third downs.

Yes, some of it might have to do with Sean Desai’s play-calling, and Shelley has been known to be a good tackler in the secondary, but he just needs to be better. He needs to make better breaks on throws and understand his assignment more often. A slot cornerback plays a vital role on defense, and the Bears are going to need a lot better play out of Shelley.