Rumors are swirling around the future of the Bears organization as big changes loom. Meanwhile, the team has to contend with all three coordinators possibly missing Monday night's game at home against the Minnesota Vikings due to COVID-19.
Former offensive lineman for the Bears James “Big Cat” Williams gives us his thoughts on the game.
1. In the first half of the Sunday night game the Bears did everything they needed to do to beat the Green Bay Packers, but they weren’t able to sustain that level of play for the entire game.
The Bears jumped out to a 10-point lead after Jakeem Grant Sr. took a 46-yard sweep all the way to the end zone.
On the Bears’ next drive, quarterback Justin Fields is picked off by Rasul Douglas who takes it 55 yards for a pick six and the score is now 14-10 Packers. Fields regroups and on a nicely designed play hits Damiere Byrd out of the backfield for a 54-yard touchdown.
Then on the Packers’ next series they run five plays before punting the ball back to the Bears three-yard line where Grant Sr. comes up with his second big play of the first half, a 97-yard punt return for a touchdown to make the score 24-14.
The Bears went in at halftime up 27-21. After all the good things we saw from the Bears in all three areas — offense, defense, and special teams — they were only up by six.
All I could think was it wasn’t enough. Could the Bears come out in the second half and play just as hard and have the ball continue to bounce their way? The answer was NO.
The Packers came out after the half and had a nine-play drive for 75 yards and a touchdown. That was followed by a strip, sack, and a Fields’ fumble that the Packers would recover on the Bears 23-yard line and score on the next play.
It looked like the Packers made halftime adjustments and the Bears didn’t as the Bears were blown away 24-3 in the second half.
2. Going into the Packers game we knew they needed to slow down quarterback Aaron Rogers. This week against the Minnesota Vikings they have a different type of challenge ahead of them.
Running Back Dalvin Cook and that Vikings offense is going to be physical and run the ball right at the Bears. The defense is going to need to match that level of physicality and aggression. Cook went into last week’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers with an injured shoulder and they didn’t even know if he would play until the pregame warm-up. Cook came out of the game with 27 carries for 205 yards and two touchdowns.
With that being said, Justin Jefferson is the receiver to watch when the Vikings decide to go play-action and push the ball down the field.
3. Offensively, the coaching staff needs to come up with a plan to take advantage of the weapons that they have. This is going to be the first time the Vikings have seen Fields in person.
The first thing the staff needs to come up with is a game plant that puts Fields in situations where he can use his versatility and speed.
Second, don’t get away from running the ball with David Montgomery and Khalil Herbert. The Bears only handed the ball off two times in the second half of the Packers game, once to each of them. If left tackle Jason Peters is out, what’s the plan for helping the offensive line be effective in the run game and how do they help Teven Jenkins on the edge when needed.
The last thing would be to get wide receivers Darnell Mooney and Allen Robinson more involved to help Fields out.
Prediction: Bears 21 - Vikings 20