By Ryan Bukowiecki (@ryanbski)
Not much in the way of encouragement has emerged from the on-field play of the Chicago Bears, so hopes and prayers are the bedrocks of optimism right now in Bears Nation.
Hope that this team can get better offensively and prayers that the Bears won’t play the New Orleans Saints as poorly Sunday afternoon as they played the Rams this past Monday night.
Chicago’s offense looks broken beyond repair and even though the defense is good, its not good enough to carry the team alone. A lot of pressure is on head coach Matt Nagy and his coaches to figure things out. But how much can you do with a broken offensive line at the center of these efforts?
On top of all this, the Bears have some major injury question marks heading into this game. Things look bleak right now but everything can change with a victory this Sunday.
It will be difficult but the Saints are not a challenge too great for the Bears to overcome. Here are the goals in order to pull off the upset.
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Prove Your Worth — In three years as Bears coach Matt Nagy has not lived up to his prior reputation as a potential offensive guru or genius. A winning coach here, Nagy still hasn’t separated himself from the class of young, offensive-minded coaches he can be compared to — primary among them, Sean McVay, who outclassed him completely on Monday.
If Nagy ever wants to earn the title of guru or genius again, or simply wants to instill more security to his job title, then it starts with getting some semblance of offense going this week.
Offensive Issues — What does a team do with a broken offensive line that stinks? Most teams eventually succumb to their terrible lines and fall hard and out of playoff contention, while good teams adjust enough to compete. Which route will the Bears take?
Who’s That Guy? — Wide receiver Allen Robinson looks to be 50/50 in terms of his availability for Sunday. Well, that’s a big yikes, because he’s been just about the team’s only consistent receiving option. Finding some trusted pass catchers, maybe one or two who we’ve yet to really hear from this year, will go a long way in a winning effort.
Defense Must Hold Strong — Nothing changes for the defense this week, they have got to keep the team in the ball game, simple as that. This Saints offense can cause some issues but the Bears defense must take advantage of their opportunities to take the ball from New Orleans and make them pay for being too comfortable.
Ryan Bukowiecki covers the Chicago Bears and professional football for WARR