The Chicago Bears welcome the St. Louis Rams to Soldier Field on Sunday where they will be looking to avenge an embarrassing loss to the Green Bay Packers, in front of what is expected to be a sold out – and likely very critical – crowd.
The Bears severely polarized the city of Chicago with the joke of a game they played last Thursday. One side of the argument states that it is only one game and early in the season. The other says the Bears will be plagued throughout the season by the atrocious play of the offensive line and poor decision making by the quarterback.
A majority of the players have gone on record stating that the game is behind them and they are looking forward to playing the Rams. If they want to beat the Rams, there are a few areas the club will have to focus on:
Balanced Offensive Attack – The Rams defense has been getting a lot of hype throughout the week. This is likely due to head coach Jeff Fischer being one of the better defensive-minded coaches in the NFL. However, when you look at the stats, the Rams are in the cellar in both rushing yards allowed (21st overall) and passing yards allowed (24th overall).
The Bears will need to lean on Michael Bush and any receiver not named Brandon Marshall. With Matt Forte out, Bush will be handling the load for the day, and Marshall will likely be doubled up throughout the afternoon. Therefore, it is imperative that Jay Cutler is able to check down to his secondary receivers.
Strong Run Defense – Let’s face it: the Rams aren’t exactly writing the book on passing attacks these days. Sam Bradford just doesn’t have the weapons at receiver in order to make a huge impact in this game (and don’t even try to tell me Danny Amendola is a stud).
If the Bears defense wants to make an impact in this game, they will have to shut down the Rams only weapon in Steven Jackson. I would expect some heavy fronts from the Bears where they stack the box and bring the sink in order to completely shatter the Rams’ hopes of running on them. Should be a fun day for Brian Urlacher.
All in all, I don’t really expect the Rams to give the Bears a ton of trouble unless the Bears completely implode like they did against the Packers.
It would be nice for the Bears to have to mix it up with the San Francisco 49ers or the Houston Texans this week as that would really show everyone if this team means business or is just along for the ride.
A great measure of character is how well one responds to adversity. Well the Packers gave the Bears all the adversity they could handle. Time to see how they bounce back.