4 changes Chicago Bears must stick with after mini-bye in 2023

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Chicago Bears v Washington Commanders, Robert Tonyan
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2. The Chicago Bears heavy personnel is here to stay

This one is slightly by default when you consider the Chicago Bears benched and traded Chase Claypool. They also tried to bring up Equanimeous St. Brown, but he was injured in week five. Between St. Brown being banged up, Velus Jones not being a real wide receiver, and Tyler Scott being slow to adjust to the NFL the Bears have decided to lean into their heavier personnel.

That meant more Robert Tonyan, Marcedes Lewis, and Khari Blasingame than we have seen in recent weeks. Tonyan went from 30 snaps in the first three games of the season to 40 snaps in the past two weeks. That included a season-high Thursday night.

Lewis did the same. His most snaps came Thursday, and he played 43 snaps in two weeks after just 22 in the three weeks prior to that.

Blasingame played 41 snaps in the last two weeks and only 17 in the three weeks before that. Needless to say, they are looking at their tight ends and fullbacks to replace Claypool and not their wide receivers.

This trend should probably stick around. The Bears need to lean into their running game, and they need to help protect Justin Fields. Beyond that, Tonyan is probably the next-best pass catcher anyway. It makes too much sense, and if Getsy wants to call plays for his personnel, this is his best option.