When ESPN publishes sweeping pieces that compare all 32 NFL teams, it's usually – pardon my expression – bad news for the Bears.
There were the QB rankings, and the offensive rankings, and the future outlook, and the offseason grades; whatever the topic is, things usually don't end well for Chicago. But not today Bears fans. Not today.
Today, ESPN's Bill Barnwell published a piece titled 'Projecting future Hall of Famers for all 32 NFL teams.' It's a fun look at every team's best players, and for once, it doesn't have to be a hate-read for Bears fans.
First up, obviously, is Khalil Mack. Barnwell lists Mack in the 'likely' range, giving the edge rusher a 70-99% chance of heading to Canton:
He has made five consecutive Pro Bowls and has three first-team All-Pro nods to go with his Defensive Player of the Year trophy from 2016. He has been one of the five best players at the second-most lucrative position in football over the past five years, and the fact that he was traded for two first-round picks and then delivered a wildly successful season with all of that attention in 2018 helps him. He probably needs two more All-Pro seasons to finalize his case.
Fair enough. Next up is Eddie Jackson (!!), who Barnwell says is "in the running" (40% to 69%):
A starter from Day 1, Jackson was a first-team All-Pro while leading the league in interceptions in 2018. Jackson and teammate Kyle Fuller both slipped last season, but each earned Pro Bowl nods, and that's going to matter more to voters 15 years from now than how either player actually performed in 2019. The reason Jackson is in this section and Fuller's in the next group is that Jackson has made two Pro Bowls in three seasons, while Fuller has two across six years.
The last two cases Barnwell examines are Fuller and Jimmy Graham, with the irony of the later being *chefs kiss.* He ultimately goes against putting Graham in, noting that, "[Graham's] peak is Hall of Fame-worthy -- he has two of the three best seasons in fantasy football history by a tight end -- but it really only lasted four seasons."
So there you have it. Anytime you read another article about how abysmal the Bears' offense is, just remind yourself that it's happening during an era where the defense has 2-3 Hall Of Fame caliber players! That helps right?