The Chicago Bears will play another biggest-game-of-the-year this Sunday Night at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia when they take on the 8-6 Eagles. The Bears have won two in a row and somehow find themselves back in first place in the NFC North. The Bears stand a game in front of both the Packers and Lions with two games to play in the regular season. The Bears got another Christmas present a little earlier then expected when Justin Tucker hit his sixth field goal on Monday Night to give the Ravens the two-point win. This weekend’s game is not going to be any type of walk in the park.
Last Sunday, Jay Cutler played admirably after opening with two interceptions, however he can’t spot Philly two possessions if he wants to lead his Bears closer to a divisional title at the end of the night. Nick Foles is currently the NFL leader in QB Rating at 117 to Cutler’s 90. Lesean McCoy’s also the NFL rushing leader with 1343, Matt Forte’s currently third with 1200. The Eagles top WR Desean Jackson is fifth in the NFL in receiving yards with 1275 and 9 touchdowns. The Eagles are currently second in the NFL in total yards and seventh in scoring. The Eagles record at home however is 3-4 which may offer some hope for Chicago, who hasn’t played well away from Soldier Field all year.
On the Bears’ side of things they have all the makings of a team that shouldn’t be able to stay with Philly defensively. The Eagles have an extremely well balanced attack on the ground and in the air with not only Lesean McCoy but also Bryce Brown and Riley Cooper. Chip Kelly uses all these weapons plus his tight ends who’re very effective when left alone. The Bears secondary and linebacking corps is banged up so preventing the Eagles from putting up 35 points is going to be a tall task.
The opportunity for the Bears is simple though. The Eagles defense is terrible; Philadelphia ranks 30th in total defense, and 17th in points-allowed. Chicago is second in the league in scoring at 28 PPG, while Philly gives up nearly 25 PPG. The Bears receivers will own Philadelphia because of their size and strength. No one in the Eagles secondary can cover Marshall or Jeffery, and if Cutler is given time he should be able to exploit the clear mismatches. Matt Forte is no slouch at 1200 yards rushing this season on top of his 522 yards catching. DeMeco Ryans is going to have a lot of responsibility this Sunday Night, and his secondary better figure things out quickly or the Bears could go off on Philly much like they did on Dallas a couple of Mondays ago. Philly’s pass defense is 31st in the league, while Chicago’s pass offense is 5th. If Nick Foles makes mistakes and Jay Cutler plays up to his potential then the Bears could be hosting on Wild-Card Weekend by the end of the weekend.