The Chicago Bears (2-4) will battle the New England Patriots (3-3) on Monday Night Football, where Chicago will be looking to snap a three-game losing skid.
But there’s not a whole lot of confidence that the Bears can do just that against a Bill Belichick-led Patriots team that’s won two straight after a 1-3 start. Chicago was embarrassed on national television in a Week 6 loss to the Washington Commanders (2-4) last Thursday night, where the Bears’ red zone offense stalled despite an encouraging outing by the defense and another fumble doomed them.
Will Chicago snap their three-game losing streak and get back in the win column against the Patriots in Week 7? Our Bears Wire staff share their game picks for Monday night’s matchup.
Alyssa Barbieri (3-3): Patriots 24, Bears 16
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I have little doubt that the Bears will find a way to keep this game a competitive one. After all, three of their four losses have come by one score (and the only outlier by 10 points). But after an uninspiring prime-time loss to the Commanders, it’s difficult to pick Chicago to win this game.
The Bears offense has struggled to score in the red zone; the run defense is one of the worst in the NFL; and this team continues to shoot themselves in the foot. It certainly doesn’t help that Bill Belichick (5-1 vs. Bears) is notorious for making things difficult on young quarterbacks. As if Justin Fields needs things to be even more difficult than they’ve been through the first six games. Meanwhile, the Patriots have won two straight games after a 1-3 start, and they look to get back Mac Jones at quarterback.
Thankfully, this is the final prime-time game for the Bears this season, and we can soon go back to our regularly scheduled Noon CT time slot. But, hey, at least we should hear some solid commentary about Fields from Peyton and Eli Manning on the ManningCast.
Brendan Sugrue (2-4): Patriots 26, Bears 10
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The Bears haven’t beaten Bill Belichick’s New England Patriots since his first season with the team and their second win certainly isn’t coming this week. Whether it’s Mac Jones or Bailey Zappe under center, it won’t matter. The Patriots offense has done what the Bears offense has failed to do and that’s establish an identity and progress with a young quarterback at the helm. They did it with both Jones and Zappe, actually.
The good news for the Bears is changes finally appear to be coming. The offensive line will reportedly look different, the team looks healthy, and it seems as if they did some soul searching during their mini bye week. If they were playing against someone other than one of the great coaches of all time, perhaps they would have a chance. But the Patriots excel in all of the areas the Bears are lacking in. Their ground game has been effective, their pass rush is formidable, and they don’t allow teams to run on them.
I’m expecting to see some improvements, but they won’t result in a win. The Patriots get the victory and Belichick passes George “Papa Bear” Halas in all-time wins. How poetic.
Ryan Fedrau (4-2): Patriots 21, Bears 13
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I just don’t see how the Bears get past New England, whether it’s Bailey Zappe or Mac Jones. I do think it’s going to be a one-possession game though, because that’s been the story of the Bears season – so close, yet so far.
The Patriots are a well-coached, disciplined football team who make very few mistakes. That’s going to be hard to beat with how shaky Chicago’s offense has been.
Nate Atkins (1-0): Patriots 30, Bears 17
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Patriots win. The team knows that a win puts Bill Belichick ahead of George Halas for second in all-time wins. Similarly, they knew their coach’s history in Cleveland and were focused on getting revenge.
The Patriots are trending up and have something to play for. The Bears are trending down, and the noise from fans and media is getting louder. I don’t think playing spoiler is motivating enough for Chicago, even if Eberflus has been teaching the players about the team’s history.
Jarrett Bailey (5-1): Patriots 26, Bears 17
AP Photo/Steven Senne
The Patriots have one of the best ground attacks in the NFL. Conversely, the Bears have a bottom five rush defense in the league. The Patriots defense has been stellar all year, allowing the seventh fewest points per game, while the Bears offense has been very stagnant. If Bailey Zappe gets the nod, New England’s passing game will be a large factor, as well. Even if it is Mac Jones, though, the Patriots are better coached and in more of a groove than Chicago, and they’ll get the win.