The Cowboys enter Week 8 with a 5-2 record and some momentum with the return of Dak Prescott. On Sunday, they will host the Chicago Bearsand are currently favored by 9.5 points according to DraftKings Sportsbook. We spoke to SB Nation’s Chicago Bears site, Windy City Gridabout the 3-4 Bears.
Blog Boys: So what happened with the Bears last week? They looked like a different team.
Windy City Grid: The Bears actually had a mini Bye between Thursday night and Monday of the following week. It was the first time the new coaching staff had more time to assess the team’s performance in actual NFL games and it looks like they really took advantage of it. They made some small personnel changes – Michael Schofield was an upgrade at right guard – but more importantly, significant changes in the appeal of offensive play. The most obvious difference was designed for Justin Fields. These were generally effective, and their threat helped the rest of the running game and the passing game.
The Bears have come close to playing well in many games, but mistakes and poor executions at crucial times have been common this season. This game, the Bears’ mistakes didn’t hurt them. They had them — there were several fumbles they recovered — but the football gods decided to shed some light on the team not booing their sophomore starting quarterback.
BTB: What’s the thinking around Chicago on Justin Fields? Is it the future or is there still some way to go until this is known?
WCG: Today, he is the future and no one has ever doubted it. At its low point (after the Texas game) my timeline was riddled with nonsense like “he’s not”. I think most are cautiously optimistic about Fields. It will take a lot for Chicago to have any doubts about a quarterback, and Fields has made enough frustrating mistakes to remind us of past heartbreaks at that position. But he has incredible athletic gifts, he learns fast and works hard, and I think as he gets more comfortable with that offense and Getsy gets more comfortable calling plays for him , things will start to flow more smoothly.
BTB: The Bears just traded Robert Quinn. Was he just unimportant to the defense this year or was there something more behind it?
WCG: Quinn had a slack year but just won her best game. I wouldn’t say he was unimportant to the defense, but the Bears have young passing throwers in Trevis Gipson and Dominique Robinson who would benefit from more playing time and Quinn wasn’t going to be kept on course. next year anyway. The Bears’ front office doesn’t see them as legitimate contenders this year, and it’s the latest step in what has been a year of clearing and building for the future. Quinn was a valuable leader in the Bears locker room, but ultimately a 4th-round pick for a player who won’t be here next year anyway was a good move for the Bears.
BTB: Give us a few players who are having great years that we may not know much about.
WCG: Tevin Jenkins was a pleasant surprise at right guard. He was drafted as a 2nd round tackle last year, but hasn’t played much. There were rumors that he could be traded as recently as training camp, and Bears fans were feeling quite downhearted. But once he moved on to guard, he looked good right away and continued to improve every week. He is consistently making the difference in the running game and becoming more and more reliable at blocking passes. On defense, rookie safety Jaquan Brisker is having a great year, but after his one-handed interception during Monday Night Football, I’m sure everyone knows him. Edge rusher Trevis Gipson is another young player to watch. He’s shown flashes as a rotational player this season, and hopefully he takes another step forward in Quinn’s absence.
BTB: The Bears are great underdogs, currently at -9.5. Do you think they will cover this spread? Will they win? Give us your prediction.
WCG: I can’t resist the chance to point out that the Bears were 8-point underdogs last week and won by 19 after taking a knee at the 2-yard line.
I feel like this game will go two ways. Either the Bears will do a good job of finding a way to reduce the damage caused by Dallas’ pass rush, or the Bears line will be overshot and things will go badly. Right now I’m feeling good with our offensive coaching and I’m going to say the Bears cover the spread and have a chance for another upset win.