Bears show promise as season nears halfway point

The Bears Defense stepped up against the Patriots in week seven. photo

The Bears Defense stepped up against the Patriots in week seven.

By Zach Mears, Staff Writer

The 2022 Chicago Bears got off to a decent start this season, and almost halfway through the season they had a 3-4 record and were tied for second place with the Packers in the NFC North division. The Vikings are  the NFC North division leaders.

In their successful week seven matchup against the New England Patriots, the Bears really showed their fans that they have plenty of time to improve this season. The Bears showed off some amazing offense and defense in the game. They had 390 total yards in the game. The Bears by far pulled off their most dominating win of this season as they would win 33-14 over the Patriots.

The Bears had quite the start that nobody expected for them to have.

In their week one matchup against the San Francisco 49ers, the Bears had a struggling offense for most of the game. Bears quarterback, Justin Fields was sacked twice and threw one interception.

It looked as if the 49ers had the win in the bag, but with the Bears showing some good defense, the Bears came out of nowhere to come back and score an upset victory over the 49ers 19-10. Even with the 49ers having more yards in both rushing and passing the ball and having more time of possession than the Bears, Chicago still scored the win.

In week two, the Bears scored their first lost of the season against the Packers 27-10. In a postgame conference from Justin Fields, he expressed his thoughts on the tough loss against the Packers.

Fields was quoted saying, “Coming out with a disappointing loss like this, it hurts but we just got to respond.”

The Bears struggled quite a bit in offense as they only had a total of 48 passing yards in the game while the Packers had a whopping 211 passing yards. When Fields was asked what is missing in their passing game, he responded, “To be honest I’m not really sure.”

In a wild week three matchup against the Houston Texans, the Bears once again struggled on offense in passing yards. However, their rushing yards improved as they had a total of 281 in rushing yards.

Fields was sacked five times and threw two interceptions. It looked as if the Bears were going to lose again, but with the help of their defense and running the ball more often than passing, the Monsters of the Midway just squeaked a victory as their kicker, Cairo Santos kicked a 30-yard game winning field goal over the Texans.

In a postgame conference from Bears Head Coach, Matt Eberflus stated his thoughts on the team’s performance throughout the second half.  Eberflus was quoted saying, “We were built for the second half and the guys did a great job at executing when they needed to in the second half of this game. Also coming up with, obviously, the big interception at the end to seal the deal, and then the kick by Cairo to get the win.” Eberflus added, “That’s our biggest takeaway for us is just being resilient.”

In another postgame conference from Fields, he states how frustrated he was at his performance of the game. “Straight up, I just played like – well, I’d like to say the A-word, but I’m not going to do that,” said Fields. “But I just played like trash. I played terrible, and really just got to be better.”

With three weeks being in the books in the 2022 NFL season, some Bears fans are not really surprised by the performance of The Monsters of the Midway.

“Looking at their opponents they played, anything could happen,” said longtime Bears fan Don Cooper. “It doesn’t surprise me that they are 2-1. They always surprise us out of nowhere.”

Cooper, from McHenry, also said, “I think their rushing the ball good but not passing the ball. I think if they can figure out what’s going on with their offense, Fields and the other offensive players can improve.”

Any team can struggle with anything very early in the season and can have plenty of time to improve.

Another Bears fan from McHenry, Kristin Brezinski said, “They always start with a good record most of the time, but start to fall, so I’m not surprised.

“The Bears have got to keep their offense strong and they have a lot of work to do,” Brezinski said. “They have to find out what players are struggling with and once they do, I think they will improve.”

The Bears played against the New York Giants in week four. While their passing yards started to improve slightly, the Bears would lose to the Giants 20-12.

The Bears would fumble the ball three times and Fields was sacked a total of six times in the game. With a loss to the Giants at New York, the Bears were still looking for first road game win.

In week five, the Bears would face the Minnesota Vikings, who are currently in first place in the NFC North division. In the first half of the game, the Bears would struggle heavily on both offense and defense forcing the Vikings to score three touchdowns in the first half.

Going into the second half in the game, the Vikings were leading 21-10. The Bears would start getting both their offense and defense and ended up coming back and take the lead for the first time in the game. The number of yards in passing for the Bears was once again decent as Justin Fields would throw the ball longer while also throwing short passes.

Their one point lead they had would be short lived as the Bears forced a late fumble and the Vikings would take the lead again and went on to win the game 29-22.

Matt Eberflus talked about his thoughts on the Bears’ performance in the second half in a postgame conference.

Eberflus was quoted saying, “Defense did a great of stopping them there and forcing the field goal and blocks it, which was again the momentum changer. The offense scored in all of the drives in the second half except for the last one.” Eberflus also said, “This is the message for the guys in there, which was just hey in the NFL, it’s never going to be perfect. It always comes down to the end. We have to make the plays to finish the game and seal the deal.”

In week six, the Bears looked to remain undefeated when playing at home. They were playing against the Washington Commanders, who were 1-4. Both the Bears and Commanders offense was extremely slow in the first half, but started to improve in the second half. In the fourth quarter, the Bears had a one-point lead over the Commanders. After the Bears forced the Commanders to go to fourth down, the Commanders would punt and that meant the Bears would get the ball back. Bears wide receiver, Velus Jones Jr. was intended to catch the ball and try to get to the Bears end zone as best as he can. Unfortunately, he would fumble the ball as he would drop the football trying to catch it. The Commanders would recover the ball and would easily score a touchdown. The Commanders would then go for the two-point conversion, but would miss.

With less than a minute to go in the game, the Bears were on first and goal just a few yards away for scoring a touchdown. After going on fourth down, the Bears would go for the touchdown to pull off a game winning touchdown. The Bears unfortunately couldn’t pull it off and would lose 12-7.

The Bears had more passing and rushing yards than the Commanders, but just couldn’t get the job done.

With only ten weeks left in the regular season, the Bears still have time to turn their season around. The offense is starting to improve, but not enough to win games. Some Bears fans still have hope that they can improve later on this season. The one thing that matters the most during the season for any team is how they finish.