The Chicago Bears defense has suffered at the hands of its own offense for a long time. Previous generations suffered in silence, for the most part, doing the best they could to carry the team alone. Is it possible this latest incarnation is taking matters into their own hands? That is the somewhat wild theory former player Michael Robinson offered during a segment of Good Morning Football on NFL Network.



Like many people in the media, Robinson is of the belief that Bears head coach Matt Nagy is making a mistake by not playing Justin Fields. Though Andy Dalton might be more experienced, he is not the better quarterback. He is also somebody at the mercy of the supporting cast around him. Especially the offensive line. Inexperienced or not, Fields gives this team the best chance to win. By sticking with Dalton, it puts more pressure on everyone else to play their best.

Something certain people in that locker room might be tired of.

Enough to possibly self-sabotage the team as a form of protest? That is Robinson’s theory. He suggested that the defense might’ve not played their best in the opener against Los Angeles on purpose. Blowing multiple coverages, missing so many tackles, and not rushing the passer well. The idea behind it? Put the pressure on Dalton to pick up the slack, watch him fail, and accelerate the timetable to get Fields in action.

Is it crazy? Of course it is. The idea that an entire unit conspired to play like crap just so they could get a change at quarterback is ridiculous. Still, it’s not hard to understand why this idea would come up. There have been multiple instances dating back to 2019 where the Bears defense has seemed to lack energy. Almost knowing that they weren’t going to get any help from the offense. That often leads to mistakes and bad games like everybody saw last Sunday night.

Chicago Bears defense maybe just isn’t what it was anymore

Like it or not, they’re getting older in some tough spots. Kyle Fuller is gone. Eddie Jackson is a shadow of his former self. Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks are both in their 30s. Danny Trevathan is on Injured Reserve. This defense lacks key pieces and the benefits of youth. Throw in a rookie defensive coordinator in Sean Desai? Nights like Week 1 in Los Angeles can happen.

That said, it doesn’t mean the undercurrent surrounding Dalton and Fields is untrue. Rumors have circulated for the past few days that some inside Halas Hall aren’t happy with Nagy’s approach at QB. They feel the rookie is ready to go. His talent is obvious but it’s his maturity and natural aura of leadership that really has guys excited. The Chicago Bears defense wants to see that just like everybody else.

Maybe another loss might do the trick?

As crazy as Robinson’s theory is, it’ll be hard to discredit if the Bears have another clunker at home against the Bengals. Without them to lean on, the original plan of letting Dalton play ball-control offense is out the window. They’ll need to score points to win. Fields gives them the best chance to do that.

SOURCEJayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Educated to be a writer at the prestigious Columbia College in Chicago, Erik has spent the past 10 years covering the Bears.