Going into training camp last season, far before I wrote my first blog, I was of the mindset that the Bears were going to finish either 9-7 or 10-6 and contend for a wild card spot. Boy, was I wrong in the best possible way, as the Bears continued to exceed expectations week in and week out and finished 12-4. Last season, the NFL schedule-making algorithm, which consists of five NFL executives and hundreds of computers, gave us a first-place schedule due to that success. In addition, the Bears will be facing all four AFC West teams this season, as do all other NFC North teams. Bears fans, I am here to tell you not to panic, as I do not have us losing many games this season and truly do believe the Bears will be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy on February 2nd, 2020.
- WR: Cordarrelle Patterson, Riley Ridley
- RB: David Montgomery, Mike Davis
- CB: Buster Skrine
- S: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
- DC: Chuck Pagano
Week 1: Thursday, September 5th, 2019 vs Green Bay Packers
- Week 7: Sunday, October 20th, 2019 vs. New Orleans Saints
- Week 8: Sunday, October 27th, 2019 vs. Los Angeles Chargers
- Week 9: Sunday, November 3rd, 2019 @ Philadelphia Eagles
- Week 11: Sunday, November 17th, 2019 @ Los Angeles Rams
- Week 14: Thursday, December 5th, 2019 vs. Dallas Cowboys
- Week 16: Sunday, December 22nd, 2019 vs. Kansas City Chiefs
- Week 17: Sunday, December 29th, 2019 @ Minnesota Vikings
If the Bears win in week one, I have them going into the bye week 5-0 and undefeated for their week seven matchup with the New Orleans Saints. I believe the most important stretch of the season will be weeks seven through 11. If the Bears manage to go 3-2 or better in that stretch, there is no way this team doesn’t finish 12-4, which happens to be my official record prediction for this season. The Bears don’t have a true road test until week nine against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. I genuinely am not worried about anyone in our division, as I believe we sweep our season series with the Lions and Vikings with relative ease. The only game I have the Bears potentially losing is against the Packers in week one. Anyone familiar with football knows that week one is a vulnerable time for any team because you don’t truly know what you have for the season in that first matchup. The toughest games will be the matchups with the Saints, Chargers, Rams, Eagles, and Chiefs. Those five games should be a true measuring stick as to where the Bears stand in terms of being Super Bowl contenders.
While 12-4 is my absolute ceiling for this team in the regular season, we need to remain relatively healthy on both sides of the ball for that prediction to come true. Look for our offense to improve with a revamped backfield and a few new weapons for Mitchell Trubisky. The only unanswered question for the Bears is who will be kicking field goals for the club. It’s a question that has lingered all offseason after Cody Parkey ripped all of Bears fans’ hearts from their chests last season and double-doinked them off the uprights. The Bears defense should be everything they were last year and more, as I expect some new concepts to be put into play with Chuck Pagano calling the shots. This is the best team in the NFC North. While we don’t have the element of surprise like last season, I assure you this is our division to lose.
As far as the Bears being a true Super Bowl contender, I would tell you to believe the hype. The Chicago Bears have a 99% complete team; they just need that clutch leg to combat “Bear Weather” and our less than ideal field conditions. It’s crazy to sit here and think how much this one position haunted us all last season and still remains an unanswered question as the Bears go into training camp. The 2019 Chicago Bears will be high scoring, tough as nails on defense, creative from a playbook standpoint, and tough to beat at Soldier Field. Not to mention this team will have fun doing it and have a tight-knit, drama-free locker room for a second consecutive season. In my opinion, a lack of competition within the division only two true road tests will lead to the Bears winning the NFC North again and hoisting the Lombardi Trophy in February for the first time since 1985.
You can say I’m a homer or biased for this prediction, but I can assure you this team can bang with the best of them for 60 minutes week in and week out. See you in February!
Featured Photo: Pro Football Hall of Fame