In the NFC North division, the Chicago Bears seem to be one of the teams getting the most scrutiny when it comes to how they will finish the 2013 season. With former head coach Lovie Smith out and new head coach Marc Trestman in, the Bears are hoping for big things this season.
The success of an NFL franchise’s season is often dictated by whether or not they make the playoffs and how deep into the playoffs the team runs. Every team in the NFL wants to hold up the Lombardi Trophy showing they were the best team for that season. For the Bears, there is a best case scenario and a worst case scenario, which they hope to avoid.
Starting off with the best case scenario, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out the Bears have hopes for the 2013 season involving winning a Super Bowl. Although, overall for the team, it would just be a successful season if they can make the playoffs. The Bears were the Super Bowl runners up in the 2006 season and since have only appeared in the playoffs once, 2010. Each year has been a different tale for the team, and they seem to be a competitive team just about every other year.
The 2013 season’s success for the Bears may be judged on a different note rather than a playoff appearance. Was firing Smith and hiring Trestman the right move for the ball club or will it prove to be a fatal mistake? How Trestman handles his team on the offensive side of the ball and if they can compete with the big dog in the NFC North, the Green Bay Packers, will surely define their season.
The Bears are known for making a great start to the season and then having a major collapse and falling from glory. They hope to avoid this reputation for the upcoming season, but if they fall into a mid-season slump again, the season is yet another failure.
The worst of the worst scenario the Bears could face this season is having a star player or multiple star players fall to the injury list. Quarterback Jay Cutler often heads to the bench after just being tackled, complaining his thumb hurts or his shoulder hurts. Running back Matt Forte has had problems with his knee and ankle missing one week in 2012 and eight weeks in 2011. Wide receiver Brandon Marshall hasn’t missed a game since 2009, but it only takes one play to have a knee bent in the wrong direction like Dustin Keller recently suffered.
Setting the injury possibilities aside, the worst case scenario for the Bears could be that Trestman’s offensive style and game plan just won’t fit the team. Trestman has introduced his style of the West Coast offense, and if Cutler becomes flustered or his arm simply won’t hold up, the Bears could be in trouble and would have to go to a backup plan. Scrapping your entire offensive scheme at any point in the season is disastrous and more often than not doesn’t help your team finish strong.