Kansas City Chiefs

Bears fans got to spend the bye week watching Pat Mahomes and Deshaun Watson be transcendent football players

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USA Today

Bears fans got to spend the bye week watching Pat Mahomes and Deshaun Watson be transcendent football players

The NFL calendar takes no prisoners, which makes the precious off week hours valuable for, you know, peace of mind. Go outside and read a book! Stay inside and read a book! The Bears will provide you ample opportunities to yell at them for the next 11 consecutive weeks, so there's no point in getting worked up over today's football, right? 

Right! So what Bears fans did is they went and got worked up over today's football. Pat Mahomes and Deshaun Watson -- both of which, you may have heard, were available to Ryan Pace during the 2017 NFL draft -- played one another for the first time in their pro careers, and it was magnificent:

This of course did NOT go over well on BearsTwitter, which is weird because usually Twitter is such an appreciative and understanding place. You know how they say that are only six types of storytelling? The same thing applies to Tweets. 

There are Angry Tweets: 

There are Sad Tweets:

There are Trolling Tweets: 

https://twitter.com/patsfandave32/status/1183469905485664257

And finally there are Over-Written Tweets That Love The Dramatic Standalone Final Punchline:

Hope everyone's enjoying their peaceful week off! 

As defending NFC North champs, the Bears are embracing all that comes with the national spotlight

As defending NFC North champs, the Bears are embracing all that comes with the national spotlight

When the Bears head to D.C. next Monday, it'll be their second nationally-televised game in three weeks. It's not dissimilar from 2018's start, when they started with back-to-back Sunday nights: first in Green Bay (remember?!) and then the home opener vs. Seattle. 

Last year, that Seahawks game would be the last nationally-viewed Bears game until they played in Detroit on Thanksgiving almost two months later. Flexed Sunday night games against the Rams and in Minnesota made it 4 on the season. 

Things are a bit different this season. As it stands today, the Bears are scheduled to be on national broadcasts five more times this year, and seven times on the season.  Two weeks after D.C. they'll be in London against the Raiders, and then have Sunday night games against the Rams, Cowboys, and Chiefs. Throw in another noon Thanksgiving kickoff in Detroit and that's a whole lot of exposure. 

"Bring the prime time, bring the prime time," linebacker Danny Trevathan said. "That’s what we strive for, that’s what we wanted. Coach talked about being 100… that’s prime time." 

There have been a lot of night games in the Matt Nagy era, a testament to how quickly he brought the franchise back into the national conversation. It's not without it's cons, but that many late kickoffs means you're doing something well. 

"There’s a little bit more attitude when you’re playing on Thursday night, Sunday night, Monday night," said Allen Robinson. "You know the whole world is watching – there’s only one game on at that time." 

"Everybody’s watching," Trevathan added. "And it’s a chance for us to go ahead and play our type of ball, come away with a dub, and put it on for the whole world to see."

Looking ahead: Bears ’19 schedule marked by upheaval – and added difficulty

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USA Today

Looking ahead: Bears ’19 schedule marked by upheaval – and added difficulty

While the Bears have been struggling to right their offensive ship and not looking any further ahead in 2019 than their own next game, their 2019 schedule has been flung into some turmoil through just two games, both good and bad. The 2019 schedule was going to be difficult anyway; certain performances project to make it even a little rougher.

The biggest shock to the lineup awaiting them was the very publicized thumb injury suffered by Drew Brees. The injury was expected to require surgery and to sideline the New Orleans quarterback beyond the Oct. 20 date when the Saints come to Soldier Field the weekend after the off week.

As for the immediate present, the Washington Redskins are expected to be without left tackle Trent Williams next Monday despite rumors that the seven-time Pro Bowl’er.

After Washington, the Bears have Minnesota coming to Soldier Field, led by quarterback Kirk Cousins, one of only four starting quarterbacks with a lower QBR number (15.8) than Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky (27.5).

The Bears don’t see the New York Giants until the weekend before Thanksgiving but when they do, the Giants presumably will have rookie Daniel Jones, the No. 6-overall pick of the 2019 draft, at quarterback instead of Eli Manning. Coach Pat Shurmur benched Manning in favor of Jones after this season’s 0-2 start left the Giants at exactly 116-116 over Manning’s 15 years as their starter.

The good news: The Bears don’t see the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs until going on three months from now. The bad news: They draw the Chiefs and Cowboys at all this year.

Patrick Mahomes, a Kansas City draft choice while Matt Nagy was Andy Reid’s offensive coordinator, is continuing to play at his ’18 MVP pace and getting the Kansas City Chiefs to 2-0. The Bears get the Chiefs at home, but KC has opened this season with road wins by 14 points at Jacksonville and 18 points at Oakland.

But as good as Mahomes has been, Dallas’ Dak Prescott has been arguably as good or better: through two games, 51-of-62 passing (82.3 percent), 10.9 yards per attempt, 337 yards per game, 142.2 passer rating, 96.2 QBR – all even higher than Mahomes’ performance indicators.

The Detroit Lions are off to a 1-0-1 start with quarterback Matthew Stafford playing above his career levels for completion percentage (65.3), passer rating (102.6), QBR, yards per game (315), yards per attempt (8.5).

Fun factoid noted by longtime legendary NFL reporter Peter King in his “Football Morning in America” this week: The Oakland Raiders have five games over the next 48 days, including vs. the Bears in London. Every one of the games is more than 1,900 miles from Oakland.

 

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