The Chicago Bears make their home debut in Week 2 against the New York Giants. Here are some predictions for the game.
The Chicago Bears seemed to be sleepwalking through three quarters of their Week 1 game against the Detroit Lions. Then, suddenly, they woke up in the fourth and scored three touchdowns to pull an incredible come from behind victory.
Hopefully, the team plays more of a complete game in their Week 1 game against the New York Giants. It’s their home opener, though no fans will attend the game. They need to be more consistent if they want to continue to win games. Depending on fourth quarter miracle comebacks is not a recipe for success.
The New York Giants come in 0-1 after dropping to the Pittsburgh Steelers 26-16. Saquon Barkley, the Giants’ All-World running back, had 15 carries for only 6 yards. The Steelers made a commitment to stopping Barkley and dared quarterback Daniel Jones to beat them. Their plan worked.
The Bears need a similar plan to win. Jones has had his ups and downs (we Bears fans can relate to Giants fans on that) so forcing him to beat you is a good idea. Stopping Barkley could be a tall task, however. The Bears have a first-time nose tackle in Bilal Nichols. The normal starter, Eddie Goldman, opted out of the season due to COVID-19 concerns. Nichols bulked up but he’s still learning the nuances of the position. After taking on Adrian Peterson in Week 1, he has to take on Barkley in Week 2. That’s a baptism by fire.
Here are some predictions for the Chicago Bears’ Week 2 game against the New York Giants.
1. The defense needs to continue to pressure the quarterback
Some criticized Khalil Mack for not getting any sacks against the Lions. However, he recorded six pressures on quarterback Matthew Stafford. The coaching staff will take all those pressures every week.
The problem was that Stafford is an excellent quarterback who did a great job of getting rid of the ball quickly. That’s how you beat the Bears’ elite defense. If the quarterback makes a quick decision and throws the ball quickly, he’ll complete the pass before the rush gets there. The continual pressure did finally help in the fourth quarter. Stafford ended up throwing some bad passes, got sacked, and threw an interception.
Mack needs to keep the pressure on Jones. Jones isn’t the quality of quarterback that Stafford is, so the pressure can get to him even more and he’ll make mistakes. Additionally, having Robert Quinn make his debut after missing Week 1 helps Mack and the rest of the defense. He could put pressure on the quarterback as well so that just makes it more difficult for the quarterback.
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The Giants’ offensive line is still trying to gel. There are three new players on the line. The unit still lacks cohesiveness. In addition to not opening holes for Barkley, the line allowed three sacks and 26 pressures. The pressures were the most of any offensive line in Week 1.
The defense needs to take advantage of that. Bilal Nichols needs to make the center’s life difficult. If the guards need to help him, that makes life easier for Akiem Hicks and Roy Robertson-Harris. Furthermore, the pressure will give the secondary a chance to make big plays.
The Bears secondary has plenty of playmakers. Kyle Fuller and Eddie Jackson are former All-Pros and Tashaun Gipson is a former Pro Bowl player. Rookie Jaylon Johnson had a great debut, causing an interception and batting away the ball on the final play of the game. If the Bears’ pass rush does its job, the secondary will have plenty of opportunities to make big plays.
Prediction: The defense records four sacks and two interceptions.
2. David Montgomery builds on his good start
David Montgomery had a frustrating 2019 season. The rookie only averaged 3.7 yards per rush. It seemed like whenever he touched the ball he had three defenders in the backfield already waiting for him. He did finish with 1,074 yards from scrimmage, however. Additionally, he ranked in the top-ten in broken tackles.
Montgomery started out the 2020 season better than expected. He suffered a groin pull late in training camp and his availability for the start of the season was in question. Many speculated that he’d start the season on injured reserve.
Instead, Montgomery played and did a good job. He finished the game with 64 yards on 13 carries, an average of 4.9 yards per run.
The Giants’ defensive line allowed Benny Snell to gash them. Snell had 426 yards last season as a rookie. He got 26.5 of that total (113) in just one game in 2020.
Montgomery can build on his Week 1 performance. Last season, it took him seven games before he recorded his first 100-yard game. It then took him nine more before he got his next one (on the final game of the season against a Minnesota Vikings team that already clinched a playoff spot). If he gets his first one in Week 2, he keeps the Giants’ defensive front reeling.
Prediction: Montgomery finishes the game with 16 carries for 105 yards and a touchdown.
3. Trubisky needs to play a full game
Trubisky had a heck of a fourth quarter against the Lions. He went 8-of-10 for 89 yards and 3 touchdowns in that quarter alone. The problem was that he didn’t do much for the three quarters before that breakout. Entering the fourth quarter, he was 12-of-26 (46 percent) for 153 yards and zero touchdowns.
The Giants still have a suspect secondary, though they feel they made a big upgrade in the offseason. Trubisky needs to test that theory. In order to do so, however, he needs to have a more complete game. He cannot depend on a miracle comeback every week.
Trubisky still looked like the same quarterback, despite the word of coaches and teammates saying the opposite. They raved about a new quarterback, making better decisions, using better footwork, and improving his accuracy. Trubisky trained with a quarterback guru and he supposedly worked wonders on him.
What we saw, though, was the same quarterback making the same mistakes, at least for three quarters. He missed badly on passes. He stared down his targets and missed plays that could’ve resulted in touchdowns. Then the fourth quarter started and he flipped a switch.
The two teams played last season as well. The Bears allowed the Giants to hang on and Chicago ended up with a mediocre win against a team that was clearly not as good as them.
Trubisky has a better offensive line and the running game is better. He has to stop with the happy feet and use his tools to attack the Giants. He needs to play a complete game and perform well. If he doesn’t, the calls for backup Nick Foles that started after the third quarter will grow.
Prediction: Trubisky throws for 276 yards and 2 touchdowns. He runs for 46 yards and a touchdown.