Sunday, August 26, 2012

Marshall Plan: Chicago Bears Season Preview

2011 Record: 8-8

2011 Ranks
Total Offense: 24
Run Offense:
Pass Offense: 26
Scoring Offense: 17
Total Defense: 17
Run Defense: 5
Pass Defense: 28
Scoring Defense: 14


The Bears offense was rolling last year before Jay Cutler went down with a season-ending injury. They had to start Caleb Haine, who was downright awful, down the stretch run and wound up missing the playoffs. This year, Cutler is healthy (though still playing behind a horrendous O-line) and is reunited with one of his favorite targets, Brandon Marshall - who the Bears acquired in a trade with Miami. Matt Forte is a solid all-around back who accounted for more than 30% of the offensive touches in the Bears offense last year. He led the team in both rushing and receptions. The Bears added QB Jason Campbell and RB Michael Bush in free agency to help hedge against injuries to Cutler and Forte. The addition of Marshall should help but this O-line is still a huge question mark.


Brian Urlacher suffered a knee injury at the end of last season and his status for the beginning of this year is still up in the air. Their defensive line is still anchored by DEs Julius Peppers who had 11 sacks last season. Their front seven should be as sound as ever, but questions remain in their ability to defend against the pass. With Matt Stafford and Aaron Rodgers in their division, this could be problematic.


This isn't the most common analogy, but the Bears are somewhat the New York Yankees of the NFL - they have acquired most of their talent through trades and free agency. This year was no different as they brought in Brandon Marshall, Jason Campbell, and Michael Bush to add playmakers and depth to the offense. The ability of their O-line to keep Cutler clean will be the key to their season.


The Bears were well on their way towards a playoff berth last season until Jay Cutler got hurt. With the addition of Brandon Marshall, the offense should be even better this season and the Bears will be right in the thick of things in the NFC North. 9-7

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