The Bears offense has been the topic of conversation (debate, really) all season long. What was supposed to be a breakout year for Matt Nagy and Mitch Trubisky has devolved into a weekly discussion of what went wrong and how the offense can be fixed.
One of the primary talking points through the first 10 weeks of the season has been Chicago's lack of identity on offense. But why is that? Is it because the Bears can't do anything right? Or is it because Nagy is too stubborn to keep calling plays that work.
Former Bears center and NBC Sports Chicago analyst Olin Kreutz offered his thoughts on the Football Aftershow on Sunday.
"You go back to their first touchdown of the year this year. It was late in the third quarter in Denver, which is the first sign already that maybe their offense isn’t going to be very good this year, and it’s a nine-play drive, eight of those plays are runs," Kreutz said. "That tells me right there what your identity is. It’s not that the Bears’ offense doesn’t have an identity, it’s that they don’t want to be what their identity is.
"They have an identity, right? They have a way they move the ball, they have a way they score. It’s just, no one turns the film on and says, 'Let’s go to our very few touchdown drives this year, and let’s see what were we actually doing on that drive?' The only drive, guys, that they were actually who Nagy wants to be was the second TD drive of the Eagles game last week. And how did they start that drive? They threw up I-formation boot to Allen Robinson, he dropped it over the guy, he went to jump over the guy’s head, not gonna say he dropped it, but Allen Robinson went for it. But that kinda got Mitch in his groove, you get him into a boot, let him throw the ball out, and then they start with their Will and their zone read. And that’s what they wanna be, but that was really the only successes they’ve ever had in that style of offense until today."
Trubisky and the Bears were more productive against a lowly Lions defense and managed to put up 20 points in the team's 20-13 win. But the passing game accounted for just 173 yards while David Montgomery churned out 60 yards on 17 carries. There were some nice moments for sure, but could a performance like Week 10 even compete against some of the NFL's better defenses? Likely not.
Kreutz is right on the money. Nagy has to stop trying to force Trubisky into the quarterback he wants him to be and instead let the offense become what it's meant to be based on the personnel on the roster. Trubisky will never be Patrick Mahomes, and that's OK. He can be 'Mitch Trubisky,' which based on Sunday's win at Soldier Field is good enough to at least keep the Bears competitive.