Sports Illustrated doesn’t think highly of Chicago Bears in new power rankings

Is a rough season ahead for the Chicago Bears? One publication seems to think so with their latest power rankings

The Chicago Bears have had their fair share of national critics this offseason. With the new regime of general manager Ryan Poles and head coach Matt Eberflus building and developing a depleted roster, the Bears fans are expecting the team to have growing pains this season.

Sports Illustrated thinks the Bears are more than just a fixer-upper, ranking the team 32nd in their new power ranking following the 2022 NFL Draft.

Here’s Conor Orr’s analysis of the current state of the Bears:

“Velus Jones Jr. isn’t going to fix the Justin Fields situation, even if he was better than any receiver in the country at causing missed tackles (or breaking tackles after the catch, according to Sports Info Solutions). I know I have been a bit of an alarmist about Fields, but it’s difficult to imagine him reclaiming a sense of normalcy this year despite a smart coaching change. Bears fans may feel otherwise, but how did this draft assuage any of our concerns about their young quarterback’s surrounding talent? A majority of Chicago’s picks were in the sixth or seventh round. Both of its starting tackles will likely be 2021 picks from outside the first round. This could get scary.”

A long ways to go

Yikes, 32nd seems a little harsh.

The Bears have a long ways to go to make the team a playoff contender—as Poles himself has noted. But the team has improved the defensive secondary and will be able to acquire more help for the offense in free agency. The defense should improve in Eberflus new 4-3 system enough to keep the Bears competitive in most games.

The Bears also hope that quarterback Justin Fields will be able to elevate the offense this season if he’s the true talent that earned him the 11th overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. Wide receivers Jones, Darnell Mooney, and Byron Pringle will be able to stretch defensive secondaries with their blazing speed. If tight end Cole Kmet makes more strides in his third season as a security blanket, Fields should have enough targets to move the ball downfield.

It seems a little early to condemn the Bears to the first pick of the 2023 NFL Draft.

Make sure to check out our Bears forum for the latest on the team.

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