Will Chicago Bears play starters in preseason finale?
The Chicago Bears are going to simulate a full-game week as they prepare for their game on Saturday night against the Cleveland Browns. The game will be the team’s third and final preseason game, a new trend as there used to be four games during this time.
Because of that there are many teams still deciding how to treat the preseason schedule. It used to be that the starters would get a “dress rehearsal” in the third preseason game, then the fourth game would be for the bottom of roster spots getting extended looks.
With the new schedule, Matt Eberflus was asked about his plans for this game, and he noted that he is still up in the air.
"“We’re still working through that. We had one conversation so far about that, and . . . we’re not ready to make the proclamation of what’s going to happen in that game yet.”"
One thing that Eberflus did note is that the team is going to use this week of practice to simulate a game week of practice. This will be a dress rehearsal as they prepare, gameplan, and get in the habit of what the next 18 weeks will be like.
As for the game, it is still up in the air. There are pros and cons to both. For the Chicago Bears, this is a new staff, and they need the reps with the starters. At the same time, they do not want a big name to get hurt just two weeks before the NFL season kicks off.
On the flip side, the team could use an extended look at some of the back end of the roster position battles. The downside is that after the Bears had just a three-day turnaround between games one and two, they barely saw their starters against Seattle. They got a long look at backups then, so maybe this is the time to give Justin Fields the first half?
You could make an argument for both sides, and Eberflus may let the practice be his guide as to what he plans to do. However, we saw once that Matt Nagy told his starters they would play, then surprised them and told them to take the game off after a hard week of practice. That method did not go great.