All is well in Chicago Bears country these days. The team sits at a confident 3-1, the defense is playing some of the best football they've played in a long time, the offense is improving each week, and the ugly loss to the Green Bay Packers seems a further and further distant memory. Oh yes, everyone is feeling pretty well these days. I ask, nay, beg the Bears to do one thing:
Please don't forget you have to play the Jacksonville Jaguars next Sunday.
There is no doubt the Bears have some momentum going for them. They're 3-1, in a first place tie, and just finished off their most impressive win of the season. The Jaguars, meanwhile, are a scuffling 1-3, and are coming off a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals --a strong team in their own right. As the stats, standings, and logic all say, the Chicago Bears ought to win this game. There is just one problem: I hate games that are that one sided on paper. All it takes is an ill-timed egg-laying and the Bears are 3-2 going into their bye week. After which they will welcome the struggling Detroit Lions to Soldier Field. That game, despite the Lions' struggles, could go either way. Divisional games always can. If it goes awry, the Bears are suddenly 3-3 and the season is in early jeopardy.
Without undermining the Bears' talent or the Jaguars as an opponent, the Bears should win this game. I don't feel like it's a stretch to say the Bears are the better team. However, I know better than to assume this means they will win. Most of the arrows are pointed in the right direction for the Bears. The defense has been disgustingly good thus far, and the offense continues to improve each week. And per usual, Robbie Gould continues to be the definition of consistency.
In anything, but especially professional sports, I'm suspicious when things are going "too well." I'm not saying the Bears' win over the Cowboys was perfect, but they did a lot of things extremely well. The Cowboys' gaffes on offense made the performance look even better than it was, but the Bears played well in their own right. They duplicated that success by taking advantage of the opportunities the Cowboys consistently presented them with.
4-1 going into the bye week would be a nice position to be in. However, the Jaguars game has "trap" written all over it. Watch you step, Bears, you should win this game, but don't assume you will.
Brian is a lifelong Chicago Bears fan, having lived in Illinois his entire life and having followed the NFL throughout.Sources
- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
- Jacksonville Jaguars
- Chicago Bears