Cory's Corner: Chicago's Ineptitude Is A Win

The Bears cannot get out of their own way offensively. 

The Bears have one of the best defenses in the league. 

Chicago gets to the passer just as well as the Rams and it stops the run better than the Rams who have the luxury of playing Aaron Donald — arguably the best defensive player in the league.

But I don't care. Chicago's defense is respectful. It hasn't given up on the season and is still playing very hard. However, the offense is absolutely pathetic. The Bears scored zero offensive points last week vs. Minnesota and were an awful 2-for-11 on third down. 

"At some point, something has to click," Bears coach Matt Nagy told the Chicago media this week. "At some point. You would think. There are two choices — you either quit or you fight."

Even Nagy is grasping at straws right now. The Bears have throwsn 16 touchdowns and 11 picks, been sacked 25 times and Chicago hasn't rushed for over 100 yards since Week 3.

How bad is it in Chicago? The Bears are averaging just 52 rushing yards a game in their last seven games. 

And here's another gift in Green Bay's stocking: Mitchell Trubisky will be under center on Sunday night. You remember him right? He's the guy that was mediocre at the University of North Carolina and that mediocrity turned him into a backup as a professional. Trubisky has 32 picks as a pro in 3 1/2 years as a pro. Jaire Alexander, Adrian Amos, Raven Greene, Chandon Sullivan and Christian Kirksey are all tied with the team lead with one interception this year. Every single one of those guys has a great chance to take the team lead because Trubisky is going to put at least two balls up for grabs and the defense has to take advantage. 

This is an offensive league and the Bears have been just offensive. Granted, the Packers defense has proven that it cannot stop the run, but now it will go up against an opponent that it can confidently stop. And that's because the Bears stop themselves moreso than any other team. 

This game is about Aaron Rodgers making the right reads, not taking too many chances and being patient against a very good and experienced unit. Green Bay is easily the best team in the division and these are the games where they need to prove it. 

This is a game the Packers should easily win. Now they just have to do it. 

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Cory Jennerjohn is a graduate from UW-Oshkosh and has been in sports media for over 15 years. He was a co-host on "Clubhouse Live" and has also done various radio and TV work as well. He has written for newspapers, magazines and websites. He currently is a columnist for CHTV and also does various podcasts. He recently earned his Masters degree from the University of Iowa. He can be found on Twitter: @Coryjennerjohn

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Comments (40)

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Archie's picture

November 28, 2020 at 07:20 am

I'm expecting the Bears' A game. National TV and they seem to play the Pack harder at Lambeau than when they at home. Add to that they are two games back of GB with 2 head-2-head games remaining. They win and they are back in it - they lose and it is all over. So this game is their entire season. And David Montgomery is back so maybe the run game will pick up. Their biggest problem seems to be their OL. But our front 7 can't rush the passer or stop the run so that looks like a push to me. I expect the Pack to win the game but the Bears getting 9.5 points could be an early x-mas present.

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jannes bjornson's picture

November 28, 2020 at 02:55 pm

Doubt the Pack cover the spread, especially at home.

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Bure9620's picture

November 28, 2020 at 10:11 am

I know everyone loves to crap on the Bears but I am not over confident.....Trubisky has been awful yet I expect him to play with a fire lit under his ass Sunday night....he knows his chances are nearly out to be a starter so he is auditioning now, not even necessarily for the Bears........Strangely, I would rather face Foles right now.......This is a huge game, the Bears trail by only 2 games in the Division......A win and we nearly seal it, a loss and this thing gets interesting.....

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 11:06 am

I agree. Foles is immobile behind a beaten up O line that wasn’t great to start with. Just not a recipe for anything positive. Trubisky is mobile. He is therefore a potential threat. The question is, to score points for which team.

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dobber's picture

November 28, 2020 at 02:36 pm

Packers need to pressure Trubs, keep him in the pocket, and actually catch the ducks he'll be throwing...

What could go wrong? ;)

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Lphill's picture

November 28, 2020 at 07:47 am

As long as JK Scott is punting it will be a close game he will hand them a short field all night , this game is no cake walk. Trubisky needs to make a statement and this is the perfect game.

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 08:11 am

If he punts like last week, the Bears have the ability to get 7 from one play when you add in our recent ST blocking. Crosby had better be kicking through the end zone on kick offs too, not something he can be relied on to do.

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jannes bjornson's picture

November 28, 2020 at 03:46 pm

Cordarrell Alert !

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NitschkeFan's picture

November 28, 2020 at 08:38 am

My prediction, the awful Bears rushing attack ("averaging just 52 rushing yards a game in their last seven games") against Mike Pettine == the Bears will rush for well over 100 yards.

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 11:08 am

Well, Montgomery is back, so their running game just improved. Question isn’t how many yards but how many rushes it takes. It’s not impossible that Trubisky runs for more than Montgomery either.

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mrtundra's picture

November 28, 2020 at 08:57 am

Underestimating our opponent cost us a win vs the vikings. We cannot underestimate the Bears, especially since they are also NFC North foes. Trubiscuit is the QB this Sunday. He could always find ways to move the ball, and against the Packer defense, I think he will find more ways to move the ball. Lots of running the ball, screen passes, play action passes and under the coverage passes could put this defense on it's heels. That is, of course, if our defense does not shake off the cobwebs and finally begins to play like they did last season, instead of the last two or three weeks. Our defense may have to rely on Aaron Rodgers and the Offense to score a lot of points to have an insurmountable lead, late in the game. I think this game will be a lot closer than advertised. GO PACK, GO!!!

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jlc1's picture

November 28, 2020 at 08:56 am

Yeah, SB caliber game when the GB O and Chicago D are on the field. Jets intrasquad scrimmage quality with GB D and Chi O.

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PeteK's picture

November 28, 2020 at 09:14 am

When you compare our D to the rest, it's a bit better than avg . However, the frustration occurs because most expected better,

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13TimeChamps's picture

November 28, 2020 at 09:55 am

.

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TarynsEyes's picture

November 28, 2020 at 09:58 am

"However, the frustration occurs because most expected better,"

Frustration occurs because they can't deliver better.

Frustration occurs because denial is a disease.

Frustration occurs because of blind optimism.

Accept what they are and enjoy the boost in play against the lesser.

Accept the reality and enjoy what you know them to be.

Accept a win over Chicago(?) and don't make it more than it is, a seal for a Division Title.

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Bure9620's picture

November 28, 2020 at 10:15 am

I don't think it is blind optimism to say defense is slightly above average because that is what they are. The numbers, both yards and points allowed reflect this. That would be 20/20 reality...

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TarynsEyes's picture

November 28, 2020 at 11:13 am

Las week before the game Indy was rated the 6th best defense in the league, but was tossed aside by some here because Indy hadn't beat a team with a winning record, though the same was true of GB, and yet, the at best middle of the pack rating of GB is being propped up as above average.

Above average defenses are more likely to have a weekly consistency value on the positive side, not the negative, which GB has been more consistent, regardless of their 7-3 record with wins against teams with losing records.

Come playoff games, which will likely be the statistic that counts? The bs ranking against losing teams or the more and obvious fails against teams with winning records? I will venture the latter, even though that number will be far below the other in total games played, because that is the reality that awaits, and any expectations based on the false blind optimism implanted in the mind s of many here will occur, because they are what they are, and nothing has been done by the team to alter that reality.

BS rankings are the tools used to brainwash the easily duped already submersed in fantasy.

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NitschkeFan's picture

November 28, 2020 at 01:02 pm

Taryn I think you are implying that statistics can be misleading or can be used selectively to arrive at a conclusion that the user desires. But there are enough different ways of assessing a football team to get a reasonable statistical picture (keeping in mind that after only 10 games that a statistician will tell you that is a very small sample size).

By adjusting for the teams the Packers have faced (as Football Outsiders does) the team defense is ranked 18th. I watch a lot of NFL games and that seems a bit generous to me but not wildly off the mark.

If you look at yards allowed per pass attempt they rank 25th

If you look at yards allowed per rushing attempt they rank tied with several teams around 20th.

That matches up with my eye test, somewhere in the 20-25 th range. Definitely below average and lucky that in many early season games the offense dominated time of possession so the total yards given up by the defense didn't seem too bad.

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TarynsEyes's picture

November 28, 2020 at 01:17 pm

"(keeping in mind that after only 10 games that a statistician will tell you that is a very small sample size)."

I'm not implying but stating it.

Keeping in mind that the ranking is based on each week's play and therefore any larger sample size to make a ranking based on a larger sample size is at this time moot. Although, if the larger sample size is the season total of 16 games, based on the sample size now, it is, as the media does, concede to numbers and decide a finding that hasn't been completely played out or manipulated, and GB's defense is what they are, below average and the spot on the ranking chart is moot.

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jannes bjornson's picture

November 28, 2020 at 03:51 pm

Turnovers generated and getting three and outs @ critical points in the game is how I look at a solid defense.
Their job is to get the ball back in Rodgers' hands.

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Bure9620's picture

November 28, 2020 at 02:59 pm

That is pretty true of everything in the playoff as you only play good teams in the playoffs.......season rankings for every category are based on 32 teams......not sure the logic, I would say Seattle has a terrible defense as they really cannot stop any team....you play whom is in front of you

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 11:13 am

Just because this D is worse than I think it should be, and has at times been helped by the Offense, it’s nowhere near as bad as some out there. With another coach it might be decent, or if LaFleur can actually make Pettine play aggressively.

This is a bad O line with a mobile QB. How will Pettine play that? That gives me qualms it is true. Echoes of Capers.

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TarynsEyes's picture

November 28, 2020 at 12:01 pm

"...it’s nowhere near as bad as some out there. With another coach it might be decent, or if LaFleur can actually make Pettine play aggressively."

Agree, but how far apart are the numbers that separate teams in any given defined column for a statistic?

Whether another DC could get more is and will be an unknown until they make the change. If not, what is there that can make anyone believe the defense will or can be better for the positive and not more negative? Outside of blind optimism, the overrated low level play against poorly ranked offenses, and the signing of basement furniture to feed the easy buy-in optimism of many, where is the positive increase in defensive play coming from?

We play tomorrow, as many accept as true, one of the worst offenses in the league, based not only on the ranking, but by the eyes of many willing to endure the watching of it. What will be the consensus if Chicago puts up 28+ even if GB wins 31/34-28. Will it be that GB is still an above average D or show that rankings allotted by mere stats are not a true reading, but the result of numbers only and not actual play.

I trust numbers in many situations, just not the use or determination implied by such in football. They're too easily manipulated to paint a picture that would be set ablaze for the falsehoods it imposes.

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Demon's picture

November 28, 2020 at 12:23 pm

However, the frustration occurs because most expected better,

Frustration occurs when it has been a decade since the D has been respectable.

Frustration occurs when teams consistently set new team records and NFL all time records against our D

Frustration occurs when a team is thoroughly humiliated in the NFC title game and the front office decides to draft for 5 years down the road.

Frustrations occur when you have a 1st ballot HOF QB that the front office doesnt feel the need to capitalize on his remaining years.

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ricky's picture

November 28, 2020 at 10:06 am

Trubisky has the ability to tuck the ball and run, which could work against the Packers. Especially if the linebackers (the Smiths, especially Preston) fail to set the edge, and instead crash into the backfield hoping for a sack. The Bears are playing for their playoff lives; Trubisky is playing to stay in the league after this season. And the Packers will have to be ready to play a full sixty minutes, rather than their usual two excellent quarters, then go into hibernation on offense.

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 11:16 am

Be interesting to see if our O line can hold up and give Rodgers time or open a run lane or two. This could be Tampa if we don’t. However bad their O is, we have to put up points and make sure their D doesn’t.

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jannes bjornson's picture

November 28, 2020 at 03:59 pm

Bears w/out Goldman up front and less speed w/out Cohen in the backfield. Robinson should school the secondary and Miller 50/50 to make a play or deliver a turnover. Clark has to dominate the Bear's front and get Gary into the starter's spot regardless of his pay scale.

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 04:33 pm

Cohen was a huge loss. He gave them another dimension beyond Robinson and provided easy relief for their QB while doing so.

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dobber's picture

November 28, 2020 at 06:30 pm

Agreed. They don't have another athlete like Cohen...at least, not one who could do as many things. Without him, they're very vanilla.

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wildbill's picture

November 28, 2020 at 12:42 pm

I’m worried as it seems we consistently play down to the level of our opponent. These games are almost always tight regardless of each teams records. This is a game we must win the turn over battle as we have a habit of making average QBs look great with our soft pass defense

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

November 28, 2020 at 02:42 pm

Just as it can be hard to predict what happens when strength meets strength, it is hard to predict what happens when weakness meets weakness.

CHI can't run the ball. GB can't stop the run. Hmmmmm.

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Coldworld's picture

November 28, 2020 at 04:34 pm

Montgomery is back and, if healthy, alters that assumption somewhat.

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dobber's picture

November 28, 2020 at 06:36 pm

Montgomery has been really lousy this season, though, in no small part due to an inconsistent and--at times beat up--OL. It's more his pass-catching than his running that has me concerned.

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Packers0808's picture

November 28, 2020 at 04:00 pm

If Packers D doesn't show up and they can find a way to run the ball, it could be a long night game for the Packers. We better score and score often thru whole game not 1/2!

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pacman's picture

November 28, 2020 at 05:50 pm

Do we all agree that if the Packers cannot motivate themselves to play all 4 qtrs against the Bears then we have a real problem on our hands?

This is a must win game for that reason alone. I don't have much hope for a SB as it is with this D Lose this game and the season basically ends.

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joejetson's picture

November 29, 2020 at 05:36 am

Terrible Bears offense versus lousy Packers defense.
To paraphrase the old saying, "A Resistable Force versus a Moveable Object".

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blacke00's picture

November 29, 2020 at 07:31 am

I have a bad feeling about this one. The Packer"s D can't stop the run and surprisingly the Bears will suddenly be able to run the ball...who would guess?

If the Packers lose this game then some serious self reflection is needed at 1265.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

November 29, 2020 at 10:58 am

I'd like to see more Gary and less Preston. I'd like to see more Martin and less dime defense. Pettine really needs to start integrating some of our young talent. I like the hustle and talent I'm seeing from these two. Give them more reps!

I'd add we all know Chicago needs to run the ball to win. Trubisky will ru often. Have a spy focused on Trubisky. Stop the run and the Packers win.

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KnockTheSnotOutOfYou's picture

November 29, 2020 at 10:59 am

I'd like to see more Gary and less Preston. I'd like to see more Martin and less dime defense. Pettine really needs to start integrating some of our young talent. I like the hustle and talent I'm seeing from these two. Give them more reps!

I'd add we all know Chicago needs to run the ball to win. Trubisky will run often. Have a spy focused on Trubisky. Stop the run and the Packers win.

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Branden Burke's picture

November 29, 2020 at 01:40 pm

Trubisky is an upgrade over Nick Foles unfortunately. They may have accidentally fell into the better QB. Two out of the three losses green bay has had, the QB's have thrown under 160 yards. Thankfully chicago's run offense is inept and they have a bad head coach. But I don't trust the edge defenders to stay home and keep trubisky in the pocket either. He defaults to running for his life after looking for one or two wr's. His statistics when rushed are horrible. They should be bringing 5 guys often. Allen Robinson is a stud. Kings size matches up better but robinson will eat him alive.

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