The Matt Nagy era in Chicago is entering its second game, and the Bears will be looking for their first win of the season when they take on the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night at Soldier Field.
The Bears appeared to be cruising to a victory in Week 1 against the Green Bay Packers, but Aaron Rodgers and the Packers came storming back and took down a victory at Lambeau Field to deny Nagy his first career win as a head coach.
With the Seahawks now on the schedule, what does Nagy’s team have to do to even their record at 1-1? Here are our three keys to a Bears victory on Monday night.
Exploit Seattle’s Weaknesses on Offense
The Seahawks have some big questions in their backfield at the moment, with Rashaad Penny and Chris Carson splitting carries for the team last week. They registered a combined 59 yards on 14 attempts, and 24 of those yards came on one rush by Carson in their loss to Denver.
If the Bears are going to win the game, they’re going to have to dare Seattle to run the ball with lockdown pass coverage and an aggressive pass rush. That should play right into Eddie Goldman’s hands, and he could have a big game if they’re able to get the Seahawks to run the ball more often than they want to originally.
Keep the Playbook Open
In the Bears’ Week 1 loss they seemed to go too conservative in the later stages of the game, to the detriment of the team. They lost steam after their initial successes, and the playcalling focused on short passing routes and run plays instead of allowing Mitchell Trubisky opportunities to throw down the field.
To have success on offense this week, the Bears need to get their vertical passing game going with Allen Robinson and Kevin White, and they will need to get their run game going with Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen.
Apply Better Pressure on Wilson and Company
The Bears’ pass rush hit paydirt numerous times against Aaron Rodgers and DeShone Kizer in the first half of their Week 1 game in Green Bay, but in the second half the Packers’ offensive line stepped up and really limited what the bears were able to do.
This time around, look for Vic Fangio to dial up more blitzes and to get Khalil Mack some better matchups, and with Roquan Smith potentially seeing more time and with Akiem Hicks and Goldman playing on the line, Mack should be able to get some chances at hitting Wilson in the pocket.