THIS week is all about establishing some momentum going into our Week 10 Bye. We aren’t trying to make a statement. After all, this is only the Bears. Pushing a car already in Neutral, isn’t impressive. And this is pretty much that. The idea here is not to lose our grip, and get backed over by that same car.
With the Packers leading the NFC North at 7 – 1, and the Vikings right on their heels at 6 – 2, the 3 – 4 fourth place Bears, have to know that 2019 is already a wrap for them. Bears fans can whip out their calculators and do some magic math, but the rest of us can hear the Fat Lady clearing her throat.
While it’s highly unlikely that the giants will beat the Cowboys this week, such an outcome would put the Eagles alone atop the NFC East. So long as we also win this week. This means that we have extreme motivation, while the Bears are practically waiting for a mercy killing. Those are the stakes. So let’s get to choppin’!
So let’s talk about the Four Things we need to focus on this week versus the Bears :
1) Make OLB Mack a liability: The Bears play a 3 – 4, with Khalil Mack as a dedicated rusher at RDE/OLB. His dance partner this week will either be LT Jason Peters, fresh off an injury, or rookie LT Andre Dillard. That sounds like a problem for us, but it doesn’t have to be. Our game plan should include constant inside chipping by the RB, followed by his release into the Flat.
That would allow our LT to speed up his kick slide, and get set-up quickly on the outside, without fear of being beaten quickly inside. If Mack speed rushes outside, the LT is already there. If Mack dips inside, he gets blown up by the RB, long enough for the LT to step up, latch on, and rag-doll him.
That RB in the Flat, is a quick way to punish the Bears for rushing Mack in the first place. I like the idea of using RB Jordan Howard on this.
He’s a good pass protector, and given the bad rap that Chicago gave him as a receiver, it would be nice to see him grab 5 or 6 passes, in open space, vs a single DB.
2) Steal their crutches: The Bears awful QB throws a lot of short passes to his RB’s. This would be a great week to see one of our players jump one of those routes and take the ball back to the house. I’m looking at you OLB Nate Gerry! It would be nice to see you make a big play, OLB Kamu Grugier-Hill! Hey Malcolm! Get in the middle of one of these upcoming passes.
This is Nelson Muntz vs Tim Cratchit. We should be able to easily take away the short game, and force a bad QB, into making some pretty dumb throws.
3) Mix it up: While their offense is a punchline, their defense is no joke. Part of that is talent, but most of it is just plain old preparation. They see what teams rely on, and they prep to take away those strengths. While we shouldn’t abandon our strengths, we should throw them a few things they haven’t seen much from us.
Seeing some 11 Personnel with rookie WR J.J. Arcega-Whiteside in the Slot, inside of WR Alshon Jeffery, would be a look that inspires the coverage to roll that way. The aforementioned 5 or 6 passes to Howard in that alignment, could be devastating.
Maybe we could run a FB trap with TE Dallas Geodert? Or maybe a play-action, TE Quick Screen out of 12 Personnel (Heavy right, motion to Twins left)? Like this:
Surely Eagles coaches are as creative as I am, right? Right?! We’ll see.
4) Toss them an anchor: Usually I like to suggest two ways to attack an opposing defense and two ways to attack their offense. However, the Bears offense is so bad, that taking way their defensive strength, should be enough to cause QB Mitch Trubisky to try and stage a rescue.
He’s like a lifeguard who can’t swim. He’s like a squeamish surgeon. He’s like a tampon made of raw, ground beef. He just makes things worse. So we’ll just take away the run, and when their team needs saving, we will present them the option of Trubisky, more Trubiskly, and only Trubisky.
If we do all these things, we’re just about guaranteed to win. Now that we’ve covered what should happen, let’s get into what likely will happen:
Defensively, the Eagles are going to make a point of taking away the run. That should get the Bears coaching staff to do some of that cute, gimmicky shit, that they love failing at so much. Rest assured, Trubisky will give us opportunities. We just have to capitalize on them, when he does.
Offensively, HC Doug Pederson understands that we have to dictate the action to a defense as good as the Bears have. It shouldn’t shock you if he dials up a shot down the field on the opening drive. Not on the first three downs, but soon after we pick up our first first down. Expect to see the Eagles being the aggressor early in this one.
The Bears are catching us at the wrong time. I almost feel bad for them.
PREDICTION: EAGLES 27 – Bears 14