The Chicago Bears are headed back to the playoffs for the first time in eight years after dismantling their biggest rivals, the Green Bay Packers. It is clear who the top dog is in this division now. Even though the 24-17 score made it look like a close game, the Bears had control for most of the game. Even when it was 14-14 in the fourth quarter, there was little doubt, and the Bears simply showed that they were the better team as they dominated Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.
It was on October 1, after the trouncing of the Buccaneers, that I declared this season to be, “a cake walk to double-digit wins and a division title.” Not to brag, but here we are with 10-wins and division title with two games still to play.
Okay, so there are two weeks left to go in the season, what can happen? One more win and they will guarantee themselves the #3 seed. There is an outside chance at a first-round bye, or even home-field advantage, but they need help. The Bears hold the tie breaker against both teams ahead of them, the Rams and the Saints. Their most likely avenue to the #2 seed would be to win both remaining games, while the Rams drop one of theirs, which would make both teams 12-4. If each of the top 3 teams finish 12-4 (Bears win 2, Rams win one, Saints lose 2) then the Bears would capture the #1 seed by virtue of NFL tiebreaker rules. It is most likely that the Bears will hold onto the 3-seed but the NFL is a crapshoot, so it is also fun to look at these different scenarios.
Pro Bowl Participants
The Bears, tied with the Cowboys and Saints, lead the league for most pro bowlers, with five representatives. The five Bears that were voted in by the fans are Tarik Cohen (a human joystick), Eddie Jackson (a pick-six machine), Akiem Hicks (a monster), Khalil Mack (a QB’s nightmare), and Kyle Fuller (a lockdown corner). The Bears also have seven alternates, so their number of participants could go up. However, we hope that none of them play because they will be shufflin’ to the super bowl.
The Bears travel to San Francisco to play the 49ers who are 4-10. They have nothing to play for except to play spoiler and gain some respect. They’ve caught my eye the past two weeks after beating the Broncos and Seahawks. Those were both played in San Francisco. This team is 4-3 at home and is not a team to gloss over. The Bears are an inferior team, but they might suffer from a little hangover after the big division-clinching win vs Green Bay. However, Matt Nagy seems to have his head on straight and these guys do know what is at stake. They’re not done, there’s still work to do, play the game to win. Trubisky looked really good against Green Bay after a tough game vs. the Rams following that shoulder injury, and I expect him to keep it going down the stretch. There is no time to rest players, the Bears need to win and who knows, they might get a little help from the Saints or Rams.
Bears 30, 49ers 13