The Philadelphia Eagles are coming off one of the most dominant performances of the 2011 season, playing at a speed the Dallas Cowboys seemed readily unprepared for. The Detroit Lions unceremoniously and quite sadly (for me, at least) ended the Tim Tebow era in Denver and rebounded soundly from their back-to-back losses at home. Both the Eagles and Lions share the tavern floor with a group of second-tier contenders in the conference – Giants, 49ers, Bears, Saints, Falcons – as they vie for the attention of the bartender up in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Attention will be paid these next two weeks. The Bears meet the Eagles under the primetime spotlight of Monday Night Football and the Lions late Sunday afternoon as the now national game of the week on FOX. Win both and the Bears will be considered the number one contender to the NFC Championship crown. Split em and the Bears will see their playoff fate determined by how they performance against the AFC West. Lose both, fall to 4-5, and the Bears will need to a lot of games as the hungry fans and rabid members begin their droning call for the heads of Lovie Smith and Jerry Angelo.
This is why it’s fun to be a fan. The weather has turned cold around the country and the Bears are playing meaningful, exciting football games in the month of November. The stakes? Meaningful, exciting football games in the month of December and beyond.
There will be no guessing. No hypothetical opinions of the Chicago Bears after these next couple of ballgames. The Bears are will play quality teams in an effort to prove they are a quality. It will be decided on the field. And I can’t wait to watch.