Friday, July 1, 2022

It’s Time We Took A Realistic Approach To The Chicago Bears Rebuild


There are increasing rumors that Matt Nagy will be fired after the Thanksgiving game, if not then, the end is expected to come very soon. This would be the first time in the 101-year history that the Bears have fired a head coach before the end of the season. It is a move that sorely needs to happen for so many reasons, but the biggest is Nagy’s stubborn refusal to prepare and implement what is best for Justin Fields.

The Bears stand at 4-7 and with games left versus the Cardinals, Packers, and two against the Vikings, odds are slim to none that they will be able to make the playoffs. A five to six-win season looks more than likely and yet another disappointing effort to Bears fans who are fed up with mediocrity. The rest of the season needs to mean something, but how?

Change the Approach & Lose the Win Now Way of Thinking

It is becoming increasingly clear that the once-vaunted defense is a shell of its former self. The pass defense is a sieve that teams attack over and over again with ease, evidenced by yet another late-game collapse against the Ravens. Kindle Vildor has been exposed as an extremely weak link. Eddie Jackson has been a huge disappointment continuing his steady decline from his glorified heights of a few years ago. Many of the defense’s biggest names, Khalil Mack, Aiken Hicks & Robert Quinn are 30 or older. A makeover is sorely needed.

The Bears need to get away from the mentality that they are a contender whose defense will get them far. They are not. They need to accept who they are and treat the last six games accordingly. Give the fans reason to be excited by generating momentum towards a team filled with young cohesive talent ready to take off in years to come.

Generate a Future Core, By Using It!

The last couple of drafts have given the Bears young talent such as Cole Kmet, Darnell Mooney, Khalil Herbert, Larry Borom, Jaylon Johnson, and Fields. But so much of this promising core is not being utilized properly. Instead of emphasizing it, Bears instead give aging vets who should not be seeing the field ample playing time, names like Jimmy Graham quickly come to mind.

When Fields comes back from his rib injury, everything must be done to enhance his development and his connection with teammates. This starts with a vast change towards actually creating effective coaching that utilizes what Fields does best. Against the Ravens, Nagy decided not to use screen passes and utilize rollouts and bootlegs that Fields excels at. It baffles the mind why. So often, it feels like Nagy has no clue what to do with Fields and his game plans end up shackling him rather than allowing his exceptional talents to take over.

A rapport between teammates only comes when they play together, are refined under fire, and persevere through it. Fields, Kmet, Herbert, and Borom must see extended time on the field. Tevin Jenkins is close to coming back from back surgery. He must start immediately upon his return. Jason Peters has been a good fill-in at left tackle, but the Bears need to see what their young talent can do. Herbert who played so well when David Montgomery was hurt has now been relegated back to the bench. Why? He should have at least close to a 50-50 split with Montgomery with the opportunity for more. Build up his comfort level with Fields, create momentum and Bears potentially have a good trade chip that they can use in Montgomery to get much-needed draft capital.

Do the same on defense. Even with all the aging players, there is still enough of a young core to build off. Roquan Smith is the clear building block, a stud now, a potential defensive MVP in the future. Strengthen his abilities by developing others around him. Johnson has shown flashes and continues to build off what could be a shutdown corner in the years to come. Give him the toughest assignments, struggles will come but they will make him stronger. Bilal Nichols is another developing talent who can be emphasized even more. Get Trevis Gibson, Khyiris Tonga, and Joel Iyiegbuniwe on the field more often.

The Future Begins Now

Bears also have players like Dazz Newsome, Charles Snowden, and Thomas Graham Jr who have not gotten the chance to show what they can do. They need to play. This may lead to more losses and the struggles won’t be easy for fans to endure, but it needs to happen. Young talent can’t grow unless it plays.

Let the future begin now and this team can generate real momentum built around Fields. Fans have seen glimpses of his potential franchise talent, the right focus on his development will enhance it. There is an opportunity to become the team of the NFC North over the next few years with all the Bears’ rivals facing serious QB question marks, but they can’t wait to take advantage.

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