The Chicago Bears are going into a game against an opponent with the opposite record this weekend, the the Miami Dolphins sitting at 5-3 versus Matt Eberflus and company being 3-5.
Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is leading the NFL in passer rating (112.7). Wide receivers Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle have broken a record for most receiving yards by a duo through eight games (1,688).
The Bears defense was gashed last week by the Dallas Cowboys, who put up 42 offensive points and scored a defensive touchdown, nearly laying a 50-burger on Chicago.
The Bears are a rebuilding team that was never supposed to be competitive this season, yet have been in most games this season aside from last week in Dallas. Going into Week 9 against Miami, everyone may be led to believe that the Bears are going to shellacked. But, wait. There’s hope.
Believe it or not, there is reason to believe the Chicago Bears can keep up with the high-flying Miami Dolphins offense.
Let’s focus solely on the two offenses going up against one another. Of course, the Dolphins have the most elite, offensive speed in the NFL between Hill and Waddle. They are going to get theirs, believe it.
But, so will Justin Fields and the Bears — just take a step back and think on a few of these things.
The Miami Dolphins was a group built on takeaways a couple of years ago. They were a sneaky, dangerous group — but not so much, anymore.
Through eight games, the Dolphins defense ranks as follows:
26th in yards given up
29th in passing yards given up
5th-most passing TDs allowed
4th-most yards-per-pass-attempt allowed
5th-most rushing touchdowns allowed
26th in points allowed
Over their last two games, the Bears have totaled over 380 yards of offense per game. For context, that number would rank 7th in the NFL if it had been over the course of the season. Also in those two games, the Bears have averaged 31.0 points per game — which would be good for 2nd in all of football if stretched over the season.
Over the past two games, we have seen Fields start to break out. Luke Getsy is using him on designed runs — finally — which is ensuring that the opposing defense has to either stay honest, or they will see Fields run all over them.
The Dolphins’ defensive unit is not good — the numbers prove it. We’re at the point in the season where it is safe to make season-long assumptions. We know which defenses are good and which are not. Miami’s defense is not their strength. Fortunately, they have a lot of firepower offensively.
But, for the Bears’ sake, their offense is improving at just the right time to run into a defense that is hurting. Getting Chase Claypool acclimated this week should allow him to be on the field for a few select packages, so we’ll see his first action in the navy and orange.
Do not be surprised if we see a career day from Fields in this one — and don’t be too shocked if the Bears somehow pull this one out.
Look for the Bears to put up 30 points in this one, and they should come fairly easily. The question is, can the defense get a couple of stops and make this interesting? We shall find out.