Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?
I always like the Chicago Bears.
Even when they are laden with Covid.
But let’s not bury the lede. It’s Arlington Hambright Week!
Thoughts on the Tennessee Titans
The Titans are a pretty easy team to understand.
First, they are not good defensively. They give up nearly 400 yards and 26.3 points per game. They might have the least impressive pass rush in the sport. They do manage to take the ball away and their +8 turnover margin is a big reason they’re 5-2 and tied atop the AFC South.
But with the Bears starting this collection of misfit toys on the offensive line, will they even be able to exploit obvious deficiencies?
Second, and not surprisingly, their offense is all about Derrick Henry. In the era of running back committees, Henry is averaging 23 carries a game and he’s the most productive back around. If Henry is running well, that opens the play action game for Ryan Tannehill. (Hell, even if he’s not running well, he’s always one carry away from an 70-yard touchdowns.) Two things the Bears should be concerned about:
- The quarterback getting outside the pocket and picking up big chunks of yardage with his legs. He does this 2-3 times a game at pivotal moments. On third downs, I’d consider spying him with Roquan Smith.
- Jonnu Smith. When you put on Titans tape the kid jumps off the screen. After seeing the Bears struggle to contain a 78 year-old Jared Cook a week ago, the younger, more athletic Smith should seriously concern them.
Saluting Nashville: Five Favorite Dolly Tunes
(5) Islands in the Stream
(4) I Will Always Love You
(3) Hard Candy Christmas
(2) Why’d You Come in Here Lookin’ Like That
Haiku, Non-Football Edition
Got drunk in Nashville,
drinkin’ gas station Millers.
Bought a pair of boots.
Tweet of the Week
What happens when producers are awake for a million hours. pic.twitter.com/mZxdGri2Dj
— Matt Rivera (@rivera) November 4, 2020
Bears on the Hot Seat
Defense. Khalil Mack. He’s one of the best edge rushers in the sport and getting to the quarterback is his primary objective. But this week Mack needs to play with discipline and hold the edge. If Tannehill gets outside him he’ll be running for days and the Bears can’t allow the Titans to move the chains on broken plays.
Offense. Allen Robinson. Yes, I picked the best player on both sides of the ball this week. The Bears need Robinson to have a dominant day. Not 4-for-70. How about 11-for-140? How about one of those games where it’s apparent he’s a franchise wide receiver and deserves to be paid like one? Robinson’s numbers are hurt by poor quarterback play but he also can do more to create separation and make plays with the ball in his hands.
This was top-to-bottom the worst Titans performance of the season. But it’s worth taking to look to understand how Joe Burrow broke them down. Burrow is a superstar quarterback, and the Bears don’t have one of those, but it’s still informative.
Henry gets his 100 but the Bears tighten up in the red zone, forcing Stephen Gostkowski to kick five field goals. Cairo Santos kicks the one the matters, at the final whistle.
Chicago Bears 16, Tennessee Titans 15