Chicago Bears: New England Patriots offer interesting future blueprint

Chicago Bears (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bears’ rocky season will lead to major changes, but the team should look at New England to create a blueprint for the future. After an embarrassing loss to the Arizona Cardinals where Andy Dalton threw four interceptions, the Chicago Bears must prepare to face the future.

On the season, David Montgomery and Khalil Herbert have been the biggest bright spots for the Bears. However, the team continues to find itself throwing while being in major deficits.

With the impending firing of Matt Nagy and what is expected to be a major organizational shift coming in the 2022 offseason, the Chicago Bears must find a blueprint to build their team. Shockingly enough, the New England Patriots might just have that blueprint.

The “Patriot Way” has been something that teams have attempted to copy for the past 10-15 years. From hiring all of Bill Belichick’s assistants and executives, the closest any team has come to success under this way has been the Tennessee Titans under Mike Vrabel, who technically never coached under Belichick and only played for him.

In 2021, without Tom Brady, the Patriots have found success with a rookie quarterback. There have been three main reasons for their success.

The first is an elite defense. The Patriots defense ranks in the tops of almost every defensive stat while being one of the few teams to have not yet had their bye week.

The second is a top-notch run game. While the Chicago Bears are averaging more rush yards per game on the season, the difference is 125.1 yards for the Bears compared to 123.5 yards for the Patriots, the Pats have dominated in the last three games. In those games, the Pats have rushed for 153.7 yards per game, good enough for third behind Philadelphia and Indianapolis.

The run game features a trio of backs that can do everything. Damien Harris, Rhamondre Stevenson, and Brandon Bolden have each proven that they can dominate on the ground and be used in the air. While Bolden is used more in the passing game, he’s still used in the ground game.

In the win over the Buffalo Bills, the Patriots ran 46 times with their backs combing for 38 of those carries for 217 yards and 1 touchdown. In the strong winds and snow, the Patriots throw the ball three times and still won.

While the Patriots won while barely throwing the ball, the third key is accuracy. When the Patriots do throw, they hit a high mark of their passes. Mac Jones is currently third in the NFL with a 70.3% completion percentage, ranking behind Kyler Murray and Tua Tagovailoa.

Improving the defense and run game comes a long way to helping a young quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger won a Super Bowl in his second year behind a strong defense and run game. Justin Fields being put in a situation with more check-downs won’t hurt him, throwing 30 times a game with more than half being downfield throws behind a bad pass-blocking offensive line will.

If the front office can prioritize building around the defense, the run game, using both Herbert and Montgomery, and allowing Fields to become more of a game manager early in his career, the long-term implications would be positive.